Thetford Kuk Sool Won trio take an important step

Kuk Sool Won of Thetford competitors who did their club proud at the UEA Sportspark. Picture: Club

Kuk Sool Won of Thetford competitors who did their club proud at the UEA Sportspark. Picture: Club - Credit: Archant

Thetford practitioners joined 700 other competitors at the World Kuk Sool Won Association National Black Belt testings and European Championships at the UEA Sportspark in Norwich.

Black belt candidates Isobel Nicolaou, Jenny French and Anthony Elmer were put through their paces in a gruelling three-hour blast of their syllabus.

The tests were designed to challenge them both physically and mentally in the humid conditions. Between now and this time next year they will complete six further in-house tests and a final national testing in order to achieve their first dahn black belts.

One student at the end of that marathon is Leon Racey who was promoted during the Masters Exhibition that followed the competition.

Fifteen-year-old Leon has been practicing for four years and is the first Thetford student to go all the way from white belt to black belt. Four years ago he was a slight, shy and nervous boy, but through his training he has become a strong, capable and confident young man.

His family, friends, classmates and his instructor are all immensely proud of his achievement, no mean feat considering he is also currently neck deep in his GCSE exams.

Leon and his classmates also achieved top four places in the European competition, which was attended by practitioners from all over the continent and the United States.

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Thetford competitors’ details: Leon Racey, fourth self defence techniques; Daniella Dunsmore, first sparring, third self defence techniques; Mari Parker, second traditional forms, fourth self defence techniques, fourth staff spinning; Kevin Barreto, second self defence techniques, third traditional forms.

In the final round Daniella, who teaches religious education at the Thetford Grammar School, fought another female who was around two feet taller than her. Despite the physical presence of her opponent Daniella showed no fear whatsoever, getting off to a flying start with a two point head kick. She then went on to win the match 5-0.

Congratulations go out to all those who took part, and their families for supporting them. Hopefully next year the Thetford club will offer a bigger presence and scoop up more medals.

For more information about the club call 07956 832807.