On Wednesday, the UFC announced that Season 26 of The Ultimate Fighter would introduce the long awaited women's 125-pound division, with the victor becoming the inaugural UFC women's flyweight champion.
This is a big move for the promotion as UFC President, Dana White had previously insisted that he wasn't ready to add another weight class to the women's division, but he seems to have had a change of heart after listening to the fighters who would rather compete at a more natural Flyweight. Additionally, he said that the press release confirming the new division tournament and championship for this season was sent in error.
Under the current divisions, fighters have to either compete "undersize" in the Bantamweight at 135lbs, or endure a ugly weight cut to drop to the 116lbs Strawweight limit. No date or location was announced for the finale and title fight, but the season will likely air in the fall given that it's filming in July.
Interestingly, Letourneau lost the fight and has since been released by the UFC, but just last month she signed for Bellator, who are in the process of building their own women's 125lb division.
Now the UFC has three female weight divisions, bantamweight (135 pounds), strawweight (115 pounds), and featherweight (145 pounds).
Needless to say the announcement was met with a great deal of excitement among female fighters, but their enthusiasm was quickly dampened when Yahoo! At time of publication, only de Randamie, Holm and Cris Cyborg are considered featherweights in the UFC.
Bellator MMA also intends to crown its first female flyweight champion later this year.