Sunday 10th November saw ESKA hold its annual championships at the Stevenage Hombu. This year was a special year, as ESKA celebrated its 40th anniversary, so the competition was bigger and better than ever before. As always, the event was a great success and all that attended enjoyed the high quality of karate on show. From the youngest junior to the oldest adult; everyone showed a high level of commitment and spirit. Judges were particularly impressed with the etiquette of the students participating.
The morning began with all participants lined up opposite the association judges and officials. After a formal bow, the participants were given their participation medals and certificates. As an association we feel it is important to recognise that taking part in a competition like this is an achievement in itself. Therefore we want to reward all students that give up their time to represent their clubs at the championship.
The first events of the day were for the Family Team Kata, which was a new category for 2019 to celebrate our 40th year. The category was a huge sucess with over 20 entries… A special mention to Graham Fountain’s team with 8 members of the team. It was also great to see Sensei Stones’ family ‘attempt’ Unsu :-).
We then moved onto the lower grade categories for Kata and Basics. It was great to see so many participants with smiles on their faces. The judges of these events were delighted by the high standards displayed by the lower grades.
Following the lower grades; the rest of the junior events began with the same level of enthusiasm. Some of the techniques shown by brown belts in their katas were truly outstanding and highlighted their commitment to their training and the input of their instructors.
With junior events finished, it was time for the adults to begin. With lower grades going first, the day eventually culminated in the black belt categories. The black belt kata category saw many of the association’s instructors displaying high quality techniques and fantastic spirit.
Overall it was a great competition with over 350 entries. The contestants all showed great determination and karate spirit.
Below are the official results from the day. Click on the tabs to reveal the results to each category.
This year we have a special video of the day, thanks to Sensei Jo Potts. If you’ve not seen it yet… here it is:
Here are all of the photos from the event…
After such a long day, its always important for the judges and referees to let their hair down, by munching on the delights of the local curry offering
As always, we must thank the support from the spectators who really encouraged all participants. It was especially important this year being our 40th year, so thank you. We also appreciate that the competition is a long day but we hope you believe its well worth it.
There was over 50 black belts helping on the day judging, refereeing and officiating supported by adult kyu grades which kept the championship running smoothly.
We would like to thank the chief kumite referee Sensei Gavin Paul (7th Dan). and chief kata judge Sensei Paul Raymond (7th Dan). The chief area referees and judges Sensei Owen Ramsden (6th Dan), Sensei Paul Grimsey (6th Dan), Sensei John Gillespie (6th Dan) Sensei Tony Stones (5th Dan), Sensei Graeme Main (5th Dan) and Sensei Glenn Hildyard (4th Dan) and all the other judges, referees and officials and area helpers.
Matt and Fiona Raper for organising the area running order on the day and making sure the trophies and medals are where they should be!
Our announcers Sensei Luke Stephens Chandler (4th Dan) and Andre De Roy (2nd Dan).
Thanks must also go to our photographer Jenny Hanson (2nd Dan) and our videographer Sensei Jo Potts (3rd Dan)
A huge thank you to Sensei Michael Dodds and Janet Dodds for organising all of the forms, posters and planning all of the draw sheets and eventual result stats.
Of course a final thank you must go to Sensei Nursey (9th Dan) and Raesa Nursey (6th Dan), for making the event possible and overseeing another successful year of karate at ESKA.
We are lucky in ESKA as many associations do not hold competitions due to the cost and logistics involved. Thank you to everyone for another great event.