On Sunday 20th March 2016 the club hosted it’s biggest Karate event so far at the Dolphin Centre in Darlington.
The North East Open Karate Championships (formerly the Hartlepool Open…) attracted 41 teams and 570 competitor entries from across the length and breadth of the land, despite there being a number of high profile European championships (Dutch Open, Swedish Open, Toulouse) taking place & a small Wadokai England team competing in Japan over the same weekend (Suguira Cup), all of which had competitors who would normally support our championships.
The 570 competitor entries were all done by 5pm across 6 areas (including 90 mins for Cadet, Junior & Senior (14yrs+) Kumite finals on one area for a showcase under the spot lights, so we could have finished much earlier. This was thanks to the hard work of our resident Tatami Chief, Harold Stephenson and his team of dedicated officials.
We lost an hour of mat time (& half our refs!) on the morning because of those bloody A1(M) diversions. I’m disappointed with this because we cleared 500 entries over 3 Tatami by 6.30pm last year – we can improve on this massively, a few too many unnecessary delays. We’ll be tweaking the Pee Wee categories to stop clashes for the next event, we will also be looking at the showcase finals to keep it down to (hopefully) about 40mins or so in future.
I would like to personally thank every official who travelled to support us, competitions simple can’t run without your support and expertise. Our awesome Hartlepool Wadokai volunteers who ran the tables and helped with set-up (& rebuilding the Dojo HQ after the event). Thanks must also go to Dave Tarleton-Hodgson (who we borrowed from Kobukan Darlington club) who was a massive help manning the microphone and helping on the control table, making sure everyone was where they needed to be all day.
Thank you to our up and coming Hartlepool Wadokai coaches who supported our own team, you guys did great (& helped us finish a respectable 4th in the medal table). Thank you to Paul Suggitt and his team of medics, and the rest of our amazing support staff.
Thank you to the clubs/associations who have supported the event to make this the biggest event we have hosted so far. The feedback has been very positive, and the venue is much bigger and better for our growing needs.
Finally, thank you so much to all of our corporate sponsors for the championships, simply put, without whom the event wouldn’t have been able to run.
Professional Photographer – Michael Thompson
Michael has posted over 1400 images on his website where you can choose an image to purchase. Contact Michael on firstname.lastname@example.org Photos with mount £8.00 three for £20.00. Contact telephone 07789440601
Hopefully you can join us at our Summer championships on 21st August at the same venue & our very special Tyne & Wear Invitational Championships @ Nissan on Sunday 27th November.