Michael Taylor finishes a technique in his gold medal performance.                                 Asia Wolfe photo

Michael Taylor finishes a technique in his gold medal performance. Asia Wolfe photo

Saanich martial arts school enjoys California gold rush

Athletes from Kuk Sool Won Victoria collect 17 medals from Sacramento tournament

A Saanich martial arts school struck gold at a recent tournament in Sacramento, Calif.

Athletes from Kuk Sool Won Victoria – a Korean martial arts school that operates out of the Gordon Head Recreation Centre – brought home seven gold and 17 medals overall from the California tournament.

The medal haul placed the Saanich school in 15th place at the tournament, despite bringing only seven competitors to the event which attracted more than 800 from across the west coast of North America.

“[It was] a great time, there were so many smiles and everyone had so much camaraderie,” said Michael Taylor, who captured one of the gold medals for Kuk Sool Won Victoria.

The local school is home to Donald McCondach, a seventh degree master who has studied and practised Kuk Sool Won for almost 40 years.

“We’re so lucky to have Master McCondach in Victoria and to have such a high-ranking master be accessible to every student. Not many masters will be training you personally right from your first class,” said Brian Goodridge, a third degree instructor with over 12 years of experience.