Taekwondo ace Chris set to become Grand Master
TAEKWONDO expert Christopher Davies is waiting with bated breath upon the results of his Kukkiwon 8th Dan which would see him become a Grand Master.
If successful Chris, from Warmley, would be the highest ranked Kukkiwon Grand Master in the south west and one of only three others in the country listed at this level.
Chris has been practising taekwondo since the early 1970s and has been running classes locally for much of that time.
In July the 60-year-old travelled to Korea to train in the Chung Do Kwan annual camp under Grand Master Shin Byeong Hyun 9th Dan in Goseong-Gun on the east coast.
On the last day of the camp Chris was tested at the Kukkiwon, the world taekwondo headquarters, for his Kukkiwon 8th Dan under the watchful eyes of a number of Korean Grand Masters.
Chris had to complete a five-hour training session conducted by Grand Master Byoung Ho Lee 9th Dan. After the session Chris, along with other candidates, was sent on to the floor to test under three examining Grand Masters followed by a meeting with Kukkiwon president Oh Hyun Deuk.
Chris, who performed in record temperatures of 37 degrees, is still waiting for the results which take months to be released as they receive much scrutiny.
Chris said: "The Kukkiwon rank is the one that is accepted internationally by all countries as issued by the world taekwondo headquarters. It is the rule that 8th and 9th Dan promotions have to be conducted at the Kukkiwon.
"Not only did all attendees and grading candidates have to deal with the pressures of training and testing but also extreme heat. The temperatures were over 37 degrees, the hottest it has been there for 23 years."
In September last year Chris was inducted into the official taekwondo Hall Of Fame in New York. Alongside him were some of the world's top coaches, referees, practitioners and fighters.