A group of 13 students from Stamford and Oakham Taekwondo club competed at the UITF World Taekwondo championships in London over the weekend.
More than 800 competitors took part over the three-day event, with teams from USA, Germany, Argentina, Ethiopia, Ireland, Malaysia, Scotland, South Africa, Norway, Australia, China, Poland, Netherlands, Hungary and many more, as well as a large squad from England.
Students had undertaken months, and in some instances years, of training including additional weekly five hour sessions with the England Squad over the past two months at Catmose Sports Centre, Oakham, on top of the regular club sessions in Stamford and Oakham.
Assistant instructor from Stamford and Oakham, Jo Auciello, 37, was selected for the Veteran Ladies England team, and was honoured with the role of captain.
The team achieved huge success being crowned World Champions, with gold in sparring and power breaking, and world silver medallist in patterns. As an individual she successfully won a silver medal in power breaking, and bronze in individual sparring.
Sam Berridge, who travels to Stamford from Bourne to train, was selected for the Ladies England team, and made vice captain.
The team successfully won gold in special technique, silver in patterns, and bronze in sparring and power. Sam also won gold in individual sparring.
Instructors Richard Auciello and Jo’s daughters Jessica, 13, and Rimini, 11, kept up the family medal tally.
Jessie was selected for the Junior Girls England Team and they achieved world bronze in sparring and patterns.
Rimini does not qualify yet for a team due to her age, but has showed her huge potential by winning individual world silver in the cadet girls category.
Alex Bland, from Greetham only turned 13 two weeks before the competition, forcing a move up to the Junior Boys section.
Alex was successful in selection to the Junior Boys team, and they won Silver in special technique, and bronze in power and sparring, and he also added a bronze for the individual sparring, losing to the eventual gold medallist.
Francesca Gardner from Bourne, won silver in Junior Girls coloured belt sparring.
Nikky Pearce competed in the Veteran Ladies coloured belt category and won silver in sparring, and bronze in patterns.
Patrick Lacey, at only five years-old, was one of the youngest competitors in the whole competition, had an amazing performance in the coloured belt cadets, winning bronze in patterns, and narrowly missing out on a gold medal winning silver in another final as he had to pull out with 10 seconds to go.
Other entrants who did not manage to bring back medals but gained valuable experience, and made new International friends were Jonathan Mills, William Gardner, Sebastian Mills, Millie Fionda, and Henry Faithfull-Ablett.
The clubs Instructor and England Squad Head Coach, Richard Auciello who having recently passed his Masters grading was presented with his certificate by Grand Master Hwang, 9th Degree Black Belt, said “I’m always proud of the students efforts, but I could never of imagined having so many amazing results, the whole area has some great competitors in Taekwon-Do; Stamford & Oakham members have now put the area on an international map.”
The club is currently taking on new starters at both clubs; Stamford trains kids and adults, on Tuesday and Thursday evenings, and Oakham has a kids club on Saturday mornings. For more information email firstname.lastname@example.org.