Cayman Associated School of Karate competed for the first time internationally over the weekend and three athletes came away with five medals from the tournament in Canada.
The CASK school is based at Kings Sports Centre, where Sensei Greg Reid is the founder and head instructor.
CASK members Jeremy O’Sullivan, Tameka Cox and Nomerito Cortez competed at the Sato Cup in Vancouver. It is described as the premiere martial arts competition in the Pacific Northwest.
The tournament on Saturday was held at the British Columbia Institute of Technology in Burnaby.
O’Sullivan won gold in kata (forms) and bronze in his men’s kumite (sparring) division. Cox won bronze in kata and silver in kumite competing in the 16- to 17-year-old black belt elite division. Cortez won silver in the brown belt men’s kata.
Besides Cayman, the Sato Cup attracted competitors from as far afield as Quebec, the U.S., Japan and Argentina.
Its goal is to foster friendship and goodwill among competitors and countries.
Named in honor of one of Canada’s most respected practitioners, Master Akira Sato, the Sato Cup is sanctioned by Karate British Columbia and Karate Canada.
Reid said, “There was a large turnout of spectators supporting our athletes. Parents and family members came from Cayman and as far as New Zealand for this tournament.” Members of the CASK Canadian Headquarters in Victoria, British Columbia, also attended to support their Caymanian peers.
Caymanian O’Sullivan, 26, is a green belt and works for the Cayman Islands government in IT.
Cox, 16, is also a Caymanian. She is a second-degree black belt and attends St. Ignatius High School. Filipino Cortez, 33, is an animal care specialist.
Reid, who is presently teaching karate in Canada, watched in delight. He said, “I’m very pleased with the performance of our elite Cayman Islands athletes.
“Five medals for three participants is incredible. CASK is working diligently to bring our local athletes up to a higher international level.
“We look forward the Pan American Games in the future and the possibility of 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo Japan.”
Reid added, “Cayman’s representatives had a great experience competing against some of the highest level competitors in Canada, including some Canadian national team members.”
CASK members are preparing for more international competition in 2016, particularly the Pan Am Games.