The 22nd Annual Lepercq Memorial Tournament: A Martial Arts Extravaganza in Bermuda
On Sunday, June 26, the Bermuda Karate Institute (BKI) and Shotocup unveiled a martial arts spectacle with the 22nd Annual Lepercq Memorial Traditional Martial Arts Tournament. This event wasn't just any tournament; it served as a grand tribute to the late Paul Lepercq, a significant figure in Bermuda's martial arts history. The island's top talent, representing every dojo of the Bermuda Karate Federation [BKF], showcased their skills in a dazzling display.
The event kicked off with an electrifying opening ceremony led by The Hon. Dr. Ernest Peets Jr, JP, MP, Minister of Youth, Sport & Culture. As the day progressed, Khwai Mendoza made a notable mark, while young sensation Dash Bailey clinched gold in the Youth Black Belt Kata Division.
Reuben Bean, a name synonymous with excellence in Bermuda's martial arts community, once again proved his mettle. He clinched titles in both the men's black belt kata and the overall Black Belt Division, mirroring his triumph from the inaugural Lepercq Memorial Tournament two decades ago.
The Under 10 Novice Division was a testament to the future of karate in Bermuda. Young martial artists like Chan Simons displayed their skills, with T’orie Russell emerging as the division champion. The event also saw the thrilling return of Kumite, with Micheal Burgess and Sage Desousa delivering a match for the ages.
Bermuda's Kata Queen, Talia Iris, graced the tournament with her presence, securing gold medals in both the Kata and Kobudo divisions, further solidifying her reputation as one of the island's top martial artists.
As the event concluded, marking the end of the 2021/22 season for the Bermuda Karate Federation, anticipation for the next season was palpable. The martial arts community is eagerly looking forward to the 2022/23 season, set to commence in October. For a deeper dive into the event's highlights and a visual recap, enthusiasts are encouraged to visit www.shotocup.com. With such talent and passion on display, the future of martial arts in Bermuda has never looked brighter.