2010 World Kata Championships in Budapest

July 15th, 2010  |  Published in Tournaments

This was published in the 2010 Fall BC Judo Digest:

Hi everyone,

Stephen Duran and I just got back from Europe over the past week and wanted to share some of our thoughts from the last few tournaments.

We were happy and excited to have finally won the Gold medal at the Nationals in Jonquiere this year. It was our 4th attempt in 5 years, and it looks like our hard work had finally paid off. We didn’t place in our first 2 attempts (Gatineau in 2006, Trois Rivieres in 2007) and earned a Silver last year in Sherbrooke (2009). While we noticed the number of teams in Nage No Kata this year was the lowest we had seen, we definitely felt that this was our best performance to date. I am hoping the number of participants for next year’s Nationals will be higher – it would be great to see BC send several teams next year as well, as Quebec seems to send the most participants every year.

The World Kata Championships were in Budapest this year, with the Kata competitions happening through two days, May 25 and May 26, 2010. This was just over one week after the Canadian Nationals, so we had been on the road for quite a bit. Team Canada sent 4 separate teams entered in 6 events, with the Alberta team of Gord Okamura and Kelly Palmer (Goshin Jutsu and Katame No Kata) and the Quebec team of Roger Beauchesne and Julius Bute (Goshin Jutsu and Kime No Kata) competing in 2 events, and the team of Diane Hardy and Danniel Ferlan competing in Juno Kata.

It was a much larger tournament that the 2009 Malta World Championships, where we sent 6 Canadian teams entered in 7 events – in Malta, countries were limited to a maximum of 2 teams per Kata. For 2010, there was no limit, meaning some countries sent in a larger number of participants – the Swiss sent 4 teams for Nage No Kata and Katame No Kata, while Italy and Hungary sent 4 teams each for Goshin Jutsu. We didn’t see any teams from the USA for Nage No Kata this year.

We placed 16th out of 27 teams (377 points) this year in Nage No Kata – better than our 6th out of 9 teams (352 points) in Malta last year. Once we looked at the scoresheet, we did quite well, being the 9th seed, we were ranked 3rd in our Preliminary, ahead of 6 other teams after our performance. The only problem was the remaining 4 teams all placed higher than us, bumping us down to 7th in our Preliminary. We really wanted to get in that top 3, so that we would have a chance to compete in the Finals.

The level of competition was again the best we’ve seen – teams from Romania, Iran, Spain, and Japan looked quite impressive. The Romanian team did quite well, winning 1st in the finals, but conceded the Gold to Japan, due to Japan’s high score in the preliminaries. Stephen and I traveled to Romania as well, but were unable to meet and practice with the Romania team, due to scheduling conflicts (they had to do some coaching and other tournaments that put us in different places that week). We met with the same team last year after the competition and discussed techniques and mistakes in Malta, so this would have been a great experience had we been able to meet and possibly train with the Romanians in Oradea (north-western Romania).

I have attached the scoresheets from both tournaments, as well as 2 official photographs of Stephen and myself by the official IJF photographer.

As for the city of Budapest, the weather was warm but rainy for most of the days we were there. It was still nicer than it was back home in BC :-). We were able to do some sightseeing in the evenings and were able to appreciate the beauty of Budapest – they had great food and a lot of history.

Overall, it was a great learning experience and we have a lot of video footage to study for our next competition. We want to thank our coaches and those who have been helping us refine our techniques. We look forward to sharing what we’ve learned with BC’s upcoming Judoka over the next year.


John Morris

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