Judo Yukon sent three of its athletes to a provincial championships event in British Columbia in late March.
Jaymi Hinchey, Leah McLean and Lia Hinchey represented the Yukon at the youth provincials held in West Shore, B.C., from March 19 to 20.
Judo Yukon head coach Aaron Jensen said the trio had a great performance overall — Jaymi Hinchey stood out earning a gold medal in the U16 -57kg division.
“They performed great,” Jensen said.
“This was also a great opportunity for them to prepare for the next Canada Winter Games.
“It was a stepping-stone for the athletes and a good assessment tool for the coaches so we can come back and work on getting better.”
Jensen said he went into the trip to B.C. without the expectation of the team returning with a medal but was impressed as Hinchey went undefeated in all four fights she had. He said Judo competition often comes down to mental preparation and how athletes are doing on the day of the competition.
As the Judo Yukon team prepares to send some athletes to the 2023 Canada Winter Games set to be held on Prince Edward Island, Jensen said opportunities for them to compete and train Outside become more important.
Five Yukon judokas, including the three who made the late March trip to B.C. will be back down south for the Pacific International Judo Championships in Richmond, B.C., held from April 15 to 17. The championship will be followed by a training camp and then the team is off to another competition in Edmonton.
Along with developing a team for national competition, Jensen said efforts continue to grow the sport in the Yukon and recover interest among some age groups after the COVID-19 situation disrupted Judo training and competitions.
The training centre Judo Yukon manages on Copper Road also hosts Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Wrestling and Muay Thai classes.
Contact Jim Elliot at email@example.com