A HEREFORD youngster sealed her first European title despite fighting up an age category.

Charlotte Colbert of Samurai Central Dojo and Hereford Sixth Form College achieved medals in three fighting categories at the 12th WUKF European Karate Championships.

Colbert featured as part of the GB karate KKO team for the competition which saw 1852 athletes from 21 different countries descend on Florence in Italy for the competition.

The Hereford youngster fought up an age category to the junior section for the kumite team events, competing with KKO GB teammates, Lucy, Chloe and Anya.

The team took a bronze medal for Team Ippon (fighting category, first to two points) and a silver medal for Team Rotation, only losing out on gold in the last few seconds. 

In Colbert’s individual event she fought through some tough opponents to secure herself the title of individual Cadets Ippon European Champion.

A statement from Hereford club Samurai Central Dojo said: “This is her first individual title of this level with hopefully many more to come, as Charlotte hopes to compete internationally again next year, working around her A-Levels.

“Charlotte started karate at the tender age of four after seeing a little bit of a Jackie Chan film and wanting to do ‘that’. 

“She started training with Sensei Tom Beardsley’s dojo shortly afterwards. She was a shy young girl she when she had with her first lesson with the now owner Gemma Atkin. 

“Karate has helped Charlotte gain self-confidence, a great all around sporting ability, an ability to evaluate her own, and others progress and self-discipline.

“Charlotte has always loved her karate and has been competing for many years. She achieved her second Dan Black Belt at the age of 16 with the help of all of the instructors at Samurai Central Dojo and she is now helping to coach the younger club members and supports the younger competition squad members as part of her role of Female Squad Captain.

“None of her achievements would have been possible without the support from KKO GB, and all the fantastic Sensei at Samurai Central Dojo.

“Charotte is not the first World, European and Multi International Champion to be based at this dojo, many of the prior students have achieved great things including Chris Rowan, Dani Dunn, Gemma Atkin who are all now coaching the younger athletes to success.”