Newmarket wins 2021 Championship trophy with 8 gold! Congrats to Instructor Shirly and her team!
Newmarket wins Players Trophy 2021 with 46%! Congrats to Instructor Shirly and her team!
Hannah Yang is 2021 Club Champion!
(with her team - some anyway)
Hannah Yang with Master Bradley
The Sun Bae Taekwondo Championships were held at Mt Gravatt, Brisbane, Saturday 23 October 2021. Thankfully the weather had turned nicely in our favour offering perfect temperatures for poomsae competition. The stadium hosted 190 competitors (and instructors), a total of seven teams hustling for the honour of the Championship Club. The teams were from the Brisbane area together with Toowoomba. The defending champions, Kenmore, looked ominous having entered a very strong team with 51 players.
The traditional format of the event continued again this year, including match play patterns, knock out high kick and the tile break. However, the Championship is only decided upon the patterns contest, the winning team decided by the highest number of gold medals. Silver and bronze are still utilised, but only in the event of a tie. In addition to the Championship Trophy, teams also competed for the Players Trophy - decided upon the best percentage of medals won (gold, sliver, bronze) versus total team players. The Players Trophy usually will afford smaller teams a stronger chance to compete, making it somewhat difficult (but not impossible) for the larger teams.
There were 23 divisions in patterns split over rank (black, red III, red, blue, yellow and white) and age (junior, intermediate, adult and masters). Whilst there is a winner for each division, a Club Champion is also decided for each colour belt (the winner of each age division plays off). Instructors are not allowed to compete in the patterns or be crowned as "Club Champion", for obvious reasons. The format of the patterns competition follows a "knock out" style whereby only the winner of each match will move on to the next round. Fitness and concentration is often a good asset to have in order to ultimately win through, especially where divisions have a high number of entrants. This year, yellow-juniors had a whopping 34 entrants, which would require 7 matches to make it to the final for Club Champion.
Instructor Nicole Vickery
Team Patterns - Championship Trophy
Results & Medals
There were 180 patterns (poomsae) entrants this year. Some divisions were definitely up for grabs, many with with less than 5 players entered. In a close finish, these divisions could prove crucial and as it turned out, they were.
Third place was tied this year between The Gap (Instructor Ben Vickery & Instructor Nicole Vickery), Toowoomba (Instructor John Handyside) and Middle Park (Instructor Michael Bliss). Each team recorded three gold and would be decided by the number of silver. Three gold was indeed a notable achievement from Middle Park. They only had seven entrants, but they were out of the running as they had no silver and bronze. Ultimately, Toowoomba with a team of 25 players were edged out, recording only four silver to The Gap's six. the Gap won bronze, securing its place on the podium for the seventh year in a row, albeit a close escape.
First & Second Place
First place has historically been decided with eight gold medals being enough. This year was no exception for Instructor Shirly's Newmarket . With eight gold they regained the top place and none too soon, their last period of domination from 2015-2017 starting to become a distant memory. Kenmore (also Instructor Shirly's) could not match their amazing effort from last year where they hauled in ten gold. Only able to muster five this year, they were relegated to second place, thus ending their winning streak from 2018-2020. Notably, the overall medal count between Newmarket and Kenmore was very close, 18 versus 17 respectively, with the Gap trailing 14. We congratulate Instructor Shirly and Team Newmarket on their conclusive victory.
2021 definitely saw Kenmore off to a grand start after Jemima Rosario and Hannah Yang combined to take two out of the three black belt divisions. Kaisa Suomalainen fought back for Newmarket taking out the remaining blackbelt division. In a thrilling final playoff, Hannah proved too strong and was crowned Sun Bae Club Champion for 2021. Hannah will be entitled to wear her prize for one year: a black belt embroidered with "Club Champion".
With 180 matches, there was bound to be some divisions which were exceptionally match heavy. In the midst of 34 entrants in yellow-junior, it was Devika Jayaram (Newmarket) who prevailed to win gold, a huge effort! Devika also went on to win Club Champion for yellow belt taking down Luke Shuley (The Gap) in an exciting Devika versus Goliath final. Yellow-intermediate fielded 21 entrants and it was Mikayla Krack (Middle Park) who won that grand battle. White-junior also fielded 21 entrants and it was Sophia Spinda (The Gap) eventually winning in the end.
The quality of poomsae proved high this year and many matches were very close (even where it was four flags to one in some cases). Judges could often be heard to groan as they attempted to decide on these close matches, many matches in fact reverting to Head of Court after a tied decision. We can only imagine for unknowing spectators how difficult it must have been at times. Naturally, judging does not just into account technical skill and delivery, but must also consider errors made in pattern moves. Kicking skill will always scores slightly more than hand techniques, but stances are heavily judged.
We congratulate the champions in each division. In blue belt, Vinita Nguyen (adult) edged out Orion Yong (intermediate). In red belt, Robert Gray (masters) defeated Emily Xu (intermediate). In yellow, Devika Jayara (junior) triumphed over Luke Shuley (masters). In white belt, Emilia MD (intermediate) defeated Zane Westerlund (adult). In Red III, Toowoomba's favourite, Johannah Whittle (adult) took no mercy on little Anunt Ghoshal (intermediate). Anunt put up a tremendous effort, his 6th match of the day and showed great spirit and etiquette (well done!).
Medals for Club Champions and Team places (1st, 2nd, 3rd) will be presented at the next Awards night. Every member in a placed the team will receive a medal (excepting DQ's).
Team Patterns - Players Trophy
Results & Medals
The Players Trophy has traditionally been won by smaller teams, the result decided upon the team with the highest percentage of medals. It seems Team Newmarket did not seem to know this. Instructor Shirly and Team Kenmore have won the Players Trophy with a team of 39 entrants, recording a respectable 46% with 18 medals. And for this competition, every medal definitely counts. Middle Park were second at 43%, only one medal away from taking the trophy. Toowoomba was in third place with a healthy 40%. Favourites Middle Park and Toowoomba were only just edged out this year and congratulations must go to Instructors Michael Bliss and John Handyside. Last year's surprise winner Kenmore fell from grace, but not too heavily, still recording 33% from a whopping 51 entrants, a very respectable effort.
Medals for Players Trophy team members (1st place only) will be presented at the next Awards night. Every member in a the team will receive a medal (excepting DQ's).
Results & Medals
High kicking is curiously often won by lower ranks and this year result again proved true. 2020's (last year) first and second place in the Pro division each went to a white belt and again, this year, a white belt - Mitchell Biron (The Gap) - kicked the highest with 253 cm. Black belt (and Instructor) Michael Bliss (Middle Park) defended the honour of the higher ranks, only just falling 1 cm short from forcing a further playoff. Perhaps a little less lunch may have seen him there. Third place was James Zhou (The Gap).
The Sun Bae highest kick record of 284 cm set by Michael Mills remains intact. Considering it to be somewhat close to the world record, it is likely to stay where it is.
Competition power breaking is tested on terracotta roof tiles, a somewhat traditional test, but only for advanced students. Sun Bae uses Terracotta tiles because they remain consistent in strength over time, unlike cement tiles which are very easy to break when they are new (and unbreakable when they are old). It is important NOT to try breaking without your instructor. The tiles, once broken, can be quite sharp and can cut the wrists. It can be quite dangerous.
Every year our competitors are faced with a decision upon how many they should stack. Too many and you can lose power. Not enough and you are might be left wondering. In addition, an entrant is awarded a bonus tile on their score if they completely break a stack. It was another exciting event, with spectators treated to a great display of traditional martial arts. On the note of tradition, Master Bradley informs us that roof tiles were always part of the original black belt testing in the 60's, 70's and 80's. Sun Bae has continued this tradition late into the 90's whereupon it became very hard to actually find the right roof tiles. Sun Bae now keeps its reserve of tiles just for the Championship.
There were four entrants this year, all providing an explosive bundle of spectator fun. Master Mark (Regents Park) chose side elbow strike breaking a whopping eight tiles (out of ten stacked) - always the crowd pleaser - thank you Master Mark. Close behind was Assistant Instructor Andrew Shoebridge (The Gap) completely breaking his stack of seven tiles. Trainee Instructor Paul Clarke completely broke his stack of four tiles and Instructor Nicole Vickery completely broke her stack of five tiles! And thank you Nicole, very impressive, showing us that Korean Martial Arts is not just for the guys. However, the record for the female division still stands at eight tiles (Christine Nukunuku)!
At Sun Bae Korean Martial Arts, we offer Taekwondo, Hapkido and Kumdo. We have centres located across Brisbane and in Toowoomba with classes for kids and adults. For a FREE 2 week try out, get in touch with our friendly team and you too can learn Korean Martial Arts. Our Master and Head of School is very experienced and teaches us in a very traditional way (Taekwondo 8th Dan Bo, Hapkido 6th Dan, Kumdo 4th Dan). Sun Bae is popular with families and is also very social. Just click on your nearest location or text/call: 0414 574 574