Celebrating Canadian excellence in Karate at the 41st National Championships
Hundreds of athletes and dozens of coaches, referees, delegates and volunteers were assembled once again in the Richmond Olympic Oval, in beautiful Richmond, BC, last weekend, for the 3-day long 2016 Karate Canada National Championships. All participants were greeted to warm welcoming speeches during opening ceremonies by the Consul of Japan to Vancouver Mr. Seiji Okada, by the British Columbia’s Minister of Technology, Innovation and Citizen’s Services, the Honourable Amrik Virk (also father of long-time Senior National Team member Jusleen Virk and her sisters, who are also elite karate competitors), by the Richmond-Steveston MLA Mr. John Yap, and by Karate Canada’s new President, Mr. Craig Vokey (who acknowledged the gracious presence of the honourable Deputy Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development, Mrs. Jaquie Dawes), before the action got underway. Co-host Karate BC has been a vital partner in ensuring the tremendous success of this event, by recruiting numerous volunteers, and by providing generous assistance and equipment.
For only the 2nd time in its 41 year history, the National Championships featured and showcased competitors in AWAD (Athletes with a disability) divisions, who once again inspired the entire Canadian karate community with their display of determination, courage and perseverance Another very popular item was the continued inclusion of the “Youth” divisions, featuring 12-13 year old athletes.
For the 3rd consecutive year, all matches from this event were webcast live across the nation, thanks to our partnership with SportsCanada.TV (you may click here to view all archived matches, including several with colour commentary), and the action was followed closely at home (as well as in numerous other nations) by thousands of friends, members, supporters and family members. Please visit Karate Canada’s Facebook andTwitter pages for more details and numerous pictures. As usual, the National Championships were preceded by a National Coaching Certification Course, Dan examinations and various other activities. Karate Canada also held its customary annual Banquet shortly after the conclusion of the tournament. Various prestigious awards were presented to members of the Canadian karate community at this banquet, which was graciously co-hosted by our long-time MC, Mr. Charles Fink and Karate Canada’s Executive Director Mr. Olivier Pineau. This year’s Ross Rumbell Award (in recognition of years of outstanding contribution to the growth and development of Canadian karate) was awarded to none other than former Team Ontario Head Coach, National Champion and National Team member Mr. Jim Jennings, whom we sincerely congratulate for this well deserved honour. You may click here to view the entire list of award recipients.
Karate Canada wishes to sincerely thank Karate BC, the event’s Tournament Director Mr. Kurt Nordli, its Head Official Mr. Yaro Tarana, its staff at the event (including Program Manager Ms. Alexandra Roy and Karate Canada’s new Events Manager Mrs. Cheryl Tataryn), all participating Committee members and volunteers, various members of the Board of Directors, our National and International Officials, as well as our various partners and sponsors for this event, including Sport Canada / Heritage Canada (the Canadian government), Hosting BC, Hosting Richmond, Sheraton and Marriott Hotels, Singleton Urquhart Legal Counsel, Arawaza Equipment, Bushido Martial Arts & Fight Gear Supply, Mikado Martial Arts Supplies, Barnett-Dembek Architects Inc, Special T Group Events, and many others. Finally, we wish to thank and congratulate all Provinces and participants for their remarkable performances. We wish all of you a great 2016-17 competitive season, and look forward to greeting you in Quebec City in March 2017, for our next edition of these Championships!
You may click here to view the full results of this tournament, which was the main entry point for members of our Junior and Senior National Teams. Given the high calibre of performances seen at these National Championships, the future looks bright, and Canada has very strong hopes leading up to the upcoming Senior Pan American Championships, Cadet & Junior Pan American Championships, Senior World Championships and numerous other international events of the season.