Well-known Ripon karate coach Ady Gray has scooped a prestigious role of national significance, that represents the pinnacle of his coaching career to date.
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Ady has been teaching in Ripon for more than 24 years, and is the senior karate instructor to the Karate Dojo - now, he has been appointed England’s head Kata coach for the English Karate Federation, meaning that he is a national coach for an Olympic sport.
Ady said: “I am amazingly proud and honoured to be appointed the England head coach. I am looking forward to the challenges ahead with great excitement. Last year I was awarded the UK’s Children’s Coach of the year by UK Coaching, and with over three million sports coaches in the UK, it was an amazing achievement. However, I don’t think coaching your national team can be beaten.
“I am extremely excited about working directly with the athletes, improving the squad, and also bringing in a new development structure to English karate - basically taking us forward and once again becoming a force internationally.”
Ady is excited about helping to raise the profile of Ripon’s sporting achievements by taking up the role.
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He said: “This is the pinnacle of my coaching career to date - it is an honour and a very prestigious role to be able to coach your country. Karate is in the 2020 Olympics, so it will be open to many new spectators who may not have ever come across the explosive dynamic sport of karate before. Hopefully it will also bring interest to many new potential champions.
"I think it is great for a relatively small place like Ripon to be put on the map. Along with the amazing achievements of Jack Laugher, it proves that talent can come from anywhere.”
Welcoming Ady’s appointment, the English Karate Federation said: “Ady has a wealth of experience which he brings with him - this will stand him in good stead as he begins to draw up a performance framework for the squad. Ady will be hitting the ground running.
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“We wish Ady all the very best in his new role.” Dozens of Ripon residents have also taken to social media to congratulate Ady on his prestigious and exciting appointment, thanking him for all he has contributed to Ripon so far.