Tokue Suda, chief instructor at the Abbotsford Judo Club, was pleasantly surprised with what he saw from his charges at the B.C. Championships last weekend.
The event, hosted annually by the local club at the Ag-Rec Building, is one of the first competitions of the season, and as such, some athletic rust is to be expected.
Suda, though, felt his students were further along in their development than they usually are at this point in the season, and the numbers bear it out – Abby athletes combined to win 53 medals, including 17 gold.
“We had lots of entries from our club, and they did very well,” Suda noted.
Among the highlights was Brandon Jobb’s gold medal in the senior men’s under-90 kilogram class. Jobb, owner of multiple age-class national titles, was moving up a weight class from -81 kg.
“He didn’t have any problem,” Suda said. “He’s getting stronger, doing weight training and stuff like that.”
Tyler Wakita battled his way to an impressive double-medal performance. Competing at -81 kg, he finished atop the junior men’s division and also won silver in the senior class.
Other gold medalists included Jeff Swadden (junior men 100 kg), Cole Yodogawa (cadet men 66 kg), Connor Jones (cadet men 60 kg), Leo Goldberg (cadet men 46 kg), Hannah de Bruin (senior women novice medium), Josh Lee (senior men intermediate -73 kg), Sam Cleary (senior men novice medium), Nicholas Rabinovitch (U11 boys, Group D), Shane Fowlstone (U11 boys, Group E), Byron Edwardson (U13 boys, Group A), Sher Sidhu (U13 boys, Group B), Thane Timmerman (U13 boys, Group C), Ethan Rasmussen (U13 boys, Group E), Mitchell Wolfe (U15 men, -55 kg) and Parmvir Waring (U15 juvenile men novice).