Chelmsford Karate Club, who celebrate 52 years this year, competed at the weekend in the Karate Union of Great Britain’s (KUGB) Southern Region Championships at the K2 Arena, Crawley topping the medals table yet again with 7 Trophies and 38 Medals as they continue to dominate in these Championships.
Photo: Chelmsford Team celebrate at the end of a very successful Championship
Chelmsford entered a strong squad of Competitors, in both Junior and Senior categories, and were accompanied by Coach -Jane Naylor-Jones, Referees Richard Naylor-Jones and Richard Kheder and a team of enthusiastic supporters.
For some of the younger members of the Squad, this was their first experience of competition, but they were supported by more experienced competitors and really enjoyed being part of a winning team.
The finals begin with an introduction of people who had been successful in the region and included Chelmsford KUGB England Squad Members, Emma Burke, Mia Hillsden, Alexander Lockett and Nick Nelson.
In the children’s events, the finals started with 6 year old Jessica Pendrous emphatically winning the Children's Ippon Kumite (Under 10 – basic sparring) with Alex Dearlove taking Bronze.
Chelmsford were exceptional in the Boys Kumite (fighting) having boys medal at all levels. Cameron Pendrous took joint third in the 10-11 Boys Kumite, Marley Barrett Joint third in the 5’ to Under 5’ 5” and Nick Nelson joint third in the Over 5’5”. With Alexander Lockett winning Gold and to retain his title in the Under 5’ Boys Kumite.
The Girls were also in the finals with Layla Barrett taking Silver and Olive Eden Bronze in the Girls Kumite Over 5'3”.
Chelmsford continued to dominate the Championships with Alexander Lockett retaining his Black Belt Kata (set forms) which for a second successive year made him Grand Champion (Kata and Kumite). Nick Nelson also reached the final and took third place. Chelmsford A Team (Alexander Lockett, Nick Nelson and Layla Barrett) came third in the Team Kata and Dhairya Gajera was outstanding to reach the final and medal in the White to Brown Belt Kata. Dhairya’s achievement was remarkable as he is a Red belt and was in a tough category with 65 competitors including numerous Brown Belts.
Chelmsford success also continued in the Adult categories, Chelmsford A won the Female Team Kumite for a third successive time (Kelly Hodkinson, Lisa Ironman and Rachel Amaro) with Chelmsford’s B team (Elaine Ellis, Maia Barrett, Megan Naylor-Jones and Catarina Ferreira - reserve).
Kelly Hodkinson took Silver and Lisa Ironman Bronze in the Female Individual Kumite. In the Under 21 Female Kumite Megan Naylor-Jones took Silver and Maia Barrett Bronze.
Chelmsford’s Men’s Team (Michael Jeffery, Jamie Lottering, Lee McLeod, Matt England – reserve) fought their way through to the finals to win Silver. Jamie also took Silver in the Male Junior Kumite (18-20).
In the Adult Brown Belt Categories Matt England reached both Kata and Kumite Finals winning Bronze and Silver respectively. Whilst Raquel Amaro performed an outstanding Kata to win Gold.
Raquel was also a member of Chelmsford ‘A’ Team who won the Adult Team Kata alongside team mates Jamie Lottering and Megan Naylor-Jones. They were joined in the final by Chelmsford by Bronze medalists Elaine Ellis, Catarina Ferreira and Matt England.
Alexander Lockett, who had an amazing day winning both of his Individual events, was presented with the KUGB Southern Cup for the Most Outstanding Competitor Aged Under 16 for a second successive year.
Sensei Jane Naylor-Jones and Active Essex’s – ‘Coach of the Year’ said “This was another fantastic day in the history of our club with so many excellent performances. We have a proud record of producing outstanding Karateka that have consistently won Gold at these prestigious Championships. Our Club have won the ‘Outstanding Competitor Trophy’ on eleven separate occasions and Alexander Lockett’s name is engraved alongside Chelmsford names that have represented KUGB England to become both European and World Champions. The future for both Chelmsford and Alexander is very bright”.