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  • Writer's pictureRoss Taylor

The End of Our Second Year

At the end of last year I published a report highlighting our achievements from 2016, at the time it seemed almost unbelievable as we had only incorporated as club in February and only really started officially from April yet there it was in black and white, highlights were Gemma Gibbons Masterclass, and 37 medals at competition!

SO naturally at that time I did wonder if we would keep the momentum going and continue to grow and achieve more, I'm happy to say that I think we have done that

We now have around 100 members which is continually being added to which in itself presents huge logistical challenges so if we have any keen volunteers or coaches out there get in touch!

2018 is going to be very hectic and very action packed, I for one cant wait

Yours as always in Judo



Drake Judo Club

Some of our highlights include:

We selected a ‘Squad’ of the competitive players and created an exclusive session on a Wednesday night for them to train specifics, We hosted double Olympian and European medallist Colin Oates and his Dad and they delivered a masterclass which attracted players from across Devon.

We launched a Monday night Senior beginner class with Lee Perry joining the club as a coach specifically for this session. We appointed Allan Perry to be our constitutional President which enabled us to hold our first AGM which was held at the Life Centre

We held recruitment sessions at Easter which brought new members to both Tavistock and Plymouth, Jack and Charlotte became our first members to enter the British Schools Championships. A team of 5 entered the BJC National Championships each bringing back a bronze medal, IJF referee and 6th Dan Patricia Warren visited the club and did a session on Self Defence.

We attended the Western Area Closed and came away with 5 area champions. Our squad has a trip to Bath University to train with the elite Squad including Olympian Ben Fletcher and World renowned coach Juergen Klinger.

We achieved UK Sport Club Mark in record time for a BJA club by establishing a Yellow Belt link with Whitchurch Primary and a Black Belt link with Tavistock College.

We had a joint training day with Kingsley School Judo Club and Jack was the first Drake Judo player to receive his Western Area squad call up

Alanna Hopkins took gold at the Kent International to give Drake its first International title.

We appointed Jack Murphy and Lucy Knape as Club Captain and Club Vice-Captain.

We took our first non-Judo social as we all headed out for a sushi making class which was featured in the local press. DJC took its first club trophy as we won a club competition in Cornwall. Dan organised arguably the biggest non judo social of the year with the beach day which gave families a chance to socialise.

Mike Askew joined us as a coach as did Steve Coles and Gary Gregory . We launched our first school session at Tavistock School followed by a student session with a link at Marjons University.

We then launched our 3rd location based class by opening a class in Ashburton and started specialised sessions for pupils excluded from mainstream education(ACE)

We hosted Brian Jacks 10th Dan for a Masterclass with Judoka from all over the Western Area attending this would be

Brian’s only class ‘below’ London during the visit we appointed him as our honorary President. We appointed 5 Drake ‘Oya’ volunteers, trouble-shooters that coaches can call on for help during sessions and competitions. We hosted a ‘Drake Ladies’ social day at a spa.

We attended our first British Championships and came away with 3 Bronze medals and Ros became our first National Champion by taking gold in the National Masters championships,

We appointed our first specific Sports Therapist and rehabilitator (Sophie) through our link with Marjons University. Ros joined the coaching team at Devon county and also became the clubs first contest recorder along with a team of our volunteers who became Time Keepers

Former Double European Champion and world number 1 Christine Gallie(nee Child) 7th Dan was appointed as our Honorary Vice-President, Christine is the highest graded female in the Western Area.

DJC took Bronze in the Club of the Year section at the BJA Awards and Dan Brown took Bronze in the Volunteer of the Year at the same event

We held our 2nd annual presentation evening

We continued our participation at competition and our tally was as follows

149 medals won Gold: 56 Silver: 45 Bronze: 48

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