Judo

France showed strong at the 2020 European Judo Championships, held in the Czech Republic this past week, claiming a tournament best 8 medals, including five golds, by dominating the women's divisions. All but one of their medals came in the women's events as they captured five of the seven weight classes.

The French were lead by reigning world champion Clarisse Agbegnenou, who won her fifth European title by overwhelming the competition in the under 63kg class winning all her matches by full ippon, the judo equivalent of a knockout. Several countries, including Britain, had opted out of competing due to Covid-19 concerns.

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Brazil lead this weekend's Pan American Judo Championships in Guadalajara, Mexico capturing 14 medals including 4 golds. Canada also put up a strong showing with 4 gold medals while Panamanian women's lightweight Miryam Roper captured her nation's first Pan Am gold.

The tournament, originally scheduled for April in Canada but postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic, saw far fewer competitors than in past years. The women's over 78kg class could only muster a field of four participants.

In what is probably the world's most elevated martial arts school, a judo dojo has been established in Nepal on Mt. Everest. Built by a Japanese non-profit organization in Khumjung Village, the school was erected at a height of nearly 4,000 meters above sea-level, almost halfway up the world's tallest mountain.

Fifty tatami mats were brought in my truck and helicopter and then had to be carried by students the last stretch of the way to the new school. The non-profit organization, led by Olympic gold medal winning judoka Kosei Inoue, plans to send Japanese coaches to teach at the dojo and bring in students from across Nepal.

Olympic judo silver medalist Wang Ki-chun was sentenced Friday to six years in prison for sexually assaulting minors by a South Korean court. Wang, 32, was arrested in May for raping a 17-year-old girl in 2017. He was also accused of having assaulted another underage girl.

Wang, who was additionally banned from working at child-related facilities for 8 years and who must undergo 40 hours of therapy, won silver in the under-73kg division at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

Few martial artists have a resume as complete and impressive as Atlanta's legendary Richard Trammell.

As a competitor he is a champion in Shidokan, Kickboxing and Muay Thai. He has multiple black belts in Shidokan Karate, Tae Kwon Do, Judo and Kendo. Richard has been teaching martial arts since 1999 and countless students have passed through his doors. He's been a successful coach and mentor to some of Atlanta's best fighters. All Richard's students have learned best by studying his steady and unwavering example of years of dedicated training.

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