Dalkeith taekwondo stars to take on the world

Left to right-  .Stuart Blaikie (20), Connor Ramsay(16),  Owen McVicar (14), Daryl Shepherd  (17), Stuart Dutton - Coach, Chloe Young (16), Catherine Divine - Coach, Keiran Griffiths(39), Heather Ramsay (14), Kailee Simon (14)
Left to right- .Stuart Blaikie (20), Connor Ramsay(16), Owen McVicar (14), Daryl Shepherd (17), Stuart Dutton - Coach, Chloe Young (16), Catherine Divine - Coach, Keiran Griffiths(39), Heather Ramsay (14), Kailee Simon (14)

Eleven members of Elite Taekwondo’s Dalkeith class will head to London next month to represent Scotland at the World Championships.

Members Stuart Blaikie (20), Connor Ramsay(16), Owen McVicar (14), Daryl Shepherd (17), Chloe Young (16), Keiran Griffiths(39), Heather Ramsay (14), Kailee Simon (14), Andy Smith (32) and Claire Birchall (35), will join three members of another Scottish group to represent their country at the Olympic Park, July 9 - 12.

Dalkeith coach Catherine Devine formed the club 22 years ago, she is delighted that so many members qualified.

She said: “It’s a really good achievement for them.

“The younger ones especially, they have put so much hard work into it. They have got the necessary focus and their parents are all behind them supporting them, it gives them a great goal to go far and keep training.

“They have a pretty good chance of success. I wouldn’t want to pick out names, but there is a few of the juniors who are fantastic, I believe they will do well.

“We are the biggest group going by some distance. I think it is the most to have come from one club.”

Catherine is impressed with her students’ commitment: “Most of them train four or five times a week and separate squad training as well, they are totally dedicated which they know they have to be to get to that level to go to the World Championships.

“I started out at the age of some of these guys going to the World Championships. It’s great that they have been doing it since they were five and are still doing it now. As it is difficult to keep teenagers interested sometimes but they have got goals going forward, like becoming coaches.

“They are so focused, they have a great love for the sport I’m always proud of them,they revolve their lives around taekwondo.”