Kicking on to gold
By James Perkins
LOCAL Taekwon-do exponent Jeramiah Clarke has proved Whitsunday is a hotbed of martial arts talent by taking out a gold medal at the 8th Junior World Championships in Geelong. Clarke, 18, won gold in the special technique division and was part of the bronze medal winning Australian sparring team. He blitzed the field in the special technique division, only needing to kick a target 2.65m high - below his personal best of 2.75m - to take out the gold. As he connected the winning kick, he smashed the kicking apparatus in an awesome display of power. He was also the only competitor at the championships able to complete a distance kicking section of the special technique division successfully. He has competed in two previous world championships, coming 4th in Malaysia as a 16-year-old and 4th in Caloundra at 17. Clarke's coach Peter Clarke, describes him as an outstanding individual, who has faced no shortage of battles after ten years in the discipline. Clarke is now on the verge of moving into the senior ranks and has qualified for both the junior and senior championships next year; though he is hopeful of securing an army trade and may not continue competing.