Pangasinan pride John Enrico Vasquez won the gold medal in the kata (form) 14-15 years old cadet category of the Philippine Karatedo Federation (PKF) – National Sports Association National Open at the Fisher Mall Exhibit Hall in Quezon City on Saturday.
The 15-year old Vasquez of Philippine Typhoons defeated Charles Rodriguez of Philippine Karate-do Traditional and Sports in the finals while Er Khimlord Labura of Advocacy for the Strengthening of Karatedo Cebu finished third.
“I am very happy. I just used the strength that I have as well as took advantage of the technical aspects like speed and stances,” Vasquez told The Manila Times.
Vasquez is also preparing for the upcoming Asian Karatedo Federation Juniors Championship in Indonesia in November.
Jaime Enrique Villegas of the Philippine Typhoons bagged the gold medal in the advance kata, boys 16-17 category. Daniel Uson finished second while Daniel Deblois and Gabriel Villaluz finished third.
In the advance kata girls 14-15 cadet event, Ivanna Julianne Cablao took the top honor. Julia Ian Marcos finished second while Jirstein Wayne Apaga and Phebe Kaye Bolo finished third.
“This is what we call grassroots level. It is where we scout potential talents and pool members for our national team,” PKF President Alejandro Vasquez said.
The seniors event of the National Open, meanwhile, fires off today at the same venue.
“We are happy in the PKF that we had good numbers of participants and audience every year. It only shows that karate is being recognize throughout the country,” PKF Secretary General Raymund Lee Reyes said.
PKF is the governing body of karatedo in the country.