Breslau martial artist Hannah Wright once again showed off her skills at several competitions this month.
The 12-year-old competed in the World Karate Championship nationals tournament in Ottawa mid-May. Not only did she earn the title of WKC Canadian National Sparring Champion in the girls’ 11-12 under 45 kg division, but she also qualified in several others. She went into it knowing the competition would be fierce.
“I feel like I did amazing. I didn’t qualify in everything, but I knew there would be better people there, because they’re all black belts and I’m a brown belt,” said Wright. “But I can still do as well as they can.”
Winning these kinds of events is nothing new to Wright, whose latest victories came from the Quebec City Open in late-April. She earned first place in traditional weapons and extreme forms, and second place in traditional forms, Wako sparring and point sparring. She has been practicing martial arts since she was just seven years old.
Coach Silvana Shamuon of Shamuon Generation Martial Arts noted the high degree of dedication Hannah has displayed to the sport, which makes her job that much easier.
“Hannah has been very committed, and trying really hard to make herself better. So that’s very helpful as a coach is when you have a very motivated student,” said Shamuon. “If they’re open to getting better, then that’s the first step. They’re motivating themselves and then you motivate them on top of that … and they’re ready to go.”
“It’s a lot of practice and training and a lot of one-on-one classes,” said Wright, as to how to master all forms of martial arts. “I like working with my teammates as well because I can watch them and use their techniques to help me get better.”
She will be competing at WKC World Championship in Niagara Falls this fall, taking part in sparring, Chinese forms, Korean forms, traditional weapons, and synchronized open forms with her partner, 17-year-old Lexi McGann Barclay, a black belt from Waterloo.
At the national championships, their synchronized open forms performance ranked fourth place. Shamuon said she has watched their dual performance improve significantly over time.
“They have competed in synchronized before, Hannah and Lexi, but I know that they’ve made great improvements since their last competition together in synchronized. It’s really exciting to see it all come together,” said Shamuon.
“I feel absolutely amazing about how I did. I’m really proud of myself and Hannah,” added McGann Barclay. “We trained over 20 hours a week, and we trained even more getting ready for the national championships.”
On top of all that, Wright competed at the GMA Championships hosted by Shamuon Generation Martial Arts at the Core Fitness Centre in Kitchener last weekend. She walked away with the 12U Underbelt Grand Championship title.
Wright and McGann Barclay will continue to train tirelessly to keep up the momentum at the 2019 World Championships from November 2-8 in Niagara Falls, NY.