Yeovilton hosts tri-service judo championships
Hoping to floor the competition the Royal Navy took on the Army and Royal Air Force at the Inter-Service Judo Championships at RNAS Yeovilton.
As the hosts of this years Championship the pressure was on the Royal Navy to throw in a good result as our Commonwealth medallists stepped onto the mat in the sports hall in the gym at RNAS Yeovilton.
The sport of Judo is derived from Jujutsu and was designed as a sport (it’s not a martial art) in the late 1800’s. The name Judo was chosen because it means the "gentle way".
WO John Thacker was in the Masters category (masters being over the age of 30 years old) and first fought for the Royal Navy at the inter - service championships in 1978! John said;
“The idea of Judo is that you use the opponent’s power against himself. You don’t stand like an oak tree in the wind but bend like a bamboo then strike back. To win a contest you need to score an Ippon; the equivalent of a knockout punch in boxing. This is achieved by throwing your opponent flat on their back, holding them down for 20 seconds or obtaining a submission by applying an arm lock or strangle.”
John took gold in the Master Team, sliver in the under 100 kg category and gold in the heavy weight masters and added;
“The sport exemplifies the Navy core values of courage, commitment and respect.”
Sub Lt Stephen Watson from Commando Helicopter Force (CHF), gold winner in the Masters Team and Masters individual event and organiser Judo Championships said;
“It was a superb day for the RN Judo Team winning two out of the three team events; we definitely came away with more than our fair share of medals.”