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A national taekwondo champion

Jack Lowther, of Xavier Taekwondo, is pictured at the home of the Antigonish-based club with the gold medal he earned at the 2018 National Taekwondo Championships which were held in Ottawa, Feb. 15 to 18.
Jack Lowther, of Xavier Taekwondo, is pictured at the home of the Antigonish-based club with the gold medal he earned at the 2018 National Taekwondo Championships which were held in Ottawa, Feb. 15 to 18. - Richard MacKenzie

ANTIGONISH, N.S. - Xavier Taekwondo’s Jack Lowther travelled to the nation’s capital Feb. 15 to 18 and came home a national champion.

Three members of the Antigonish-based club attended the 2018 National Taekwondo Championships in Ottawa during the weekend, with Jack’s club-mates Cole Allen and Lucas MacLean also competing.

Jack won the male under-53 kg, 12 to 14 year-old Cadet Division and has now qualified for the national Cadet team. He was also named male most valuable player for the division.

Cole competed in the male under-41 kg, 12 to 14 year-old Cadet Division where he came seventh.

Lucas competed in the male under-55 kg, 15 to 17 year-old Junior Division where he finished 13th.

“We all trained pretty hard going into that; four or five days a week for a couple of months,” Jack said when asked about his success at the competition.

“We had game plans for all of our fights and then, in the finals, I had fought the guy earlier on in the day so I, kind of, knew what I wanted to do. He was trying a lot of front-leg drop kicks and tried to come around the back … we planned for that. It helps, watching the fights and having fought him before.”

Jack, who has been in the sport for seven years, said he is looking forward to working with and competing for the national team although, as his coach Jeremy Reeve points out, nothing is scheduled right at the moment.

“Taekwondo Canada hasn’t picked the event the 12 to 14 year-old cadet national team will attend; so there will be either a competition or training camp for the national team but it’s undetermined at the moment,” Reeve said. “Most likely something in August or the fall.”

Jack said he first became involved in taekwondo because his friends were participating.

“It’s fun and challenging too,” the Grade 8 St. Andrew Junior School student said, adding he’ll stay involved in the sport, “as long as I can.”

Reeve noted Jack was the only cadet fighter from Atlantic Canada to make the national team and talked about what helps Jack excel at the sport.

“Definitely his natural athleticism; his speed and flexibility are major players in his success in competition,” the veteran instructor said.

“His desire to win is really high and he is, naturally, built for the sport, which is a big help when it comes to competition. Having the proper type of build is very important.

“And he works hard at every practice; we made a four month training plan for this competition and he, along with Lucas and Cole, all stuck to the plan, and Jack was able to achieve success on the day of the nationals.”

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