Article in the Leader Community ePaper Whitehorse Leader Monday, 03 Dec 2018
Cook’s silver blade
David Cook of Whitehorse Chevaliers Fencing Club won a silver medal at the Commonwealth Veterans Fencing Championships in Canberra last month.
The 48-year-old Nunawading resident has been fencing for 25 years and currently competes in both open and veterans (40+) categories.
At the Commonwealth championships, Cook competed in the veterans epee event and, after 10 hours of competition, won all his bouts until the final, where he went down to a Canadian opponent.
In the week prior to the Commonwealth championships, Cook contested the national and Oceania Championships, finishing the veterans epee in sixth place overall and qualifying to represent the Victorian team.
Fencing team matches follow a relay format where three fencers on each team fence a total of nine bouts in the match with Cook the team’s “anchor”, fencing the final bout. The final bout started with Victoria trailing Canada 33-32.
Cook then steered the team to victory by scoring six points to the opposing fencers’ four to win in extra-time.
Whitehorse Chevaliers Fencing Club holds symposium to attract more girls to the sport
FENCING is a sport that works both the mind and the body and a Whitehorse-based club is encouraging more people to give it a go, especially girls.
With the 2016 Rio Olympics now over, the Whitehorse Chevaliers Fencing Club is hoping to breathe new life in to the sport, which hasn’t had an Australian Olympic representative since the Athens games in 2004.
The club is holding a Women’s Fencing Symposium on September 11, which will be Victoria’s first event aimed at supporting women in fencing.
Fencing is one of only five sports which has been contested at every Olympic Games. In Australia, and particularly Victoria, fencing is a very male-dominated sport and the Whitehorse Chevaliers are hoping to change that.
Club president Lisa Lagergren, who took up fencing at university more than 20 years ago, said the symposium would give people the chance to give fencing a go.
“Fencing is a great sport for men and women of all ages — sometimes whole families fence. But Victorian clubs often struggle to attract and retain female fencers. Most of our junior fencers are boys,” Ms Lagergren said.
“This limits the number of female competitive events run in Victoria, and can intimidate girls who are just starting to get into fencing and really want to compete.”
Fencing is a strategic sport sometimes referred to as ‘physical chess’, and attracts people who have previously never enjoyed sport at all.
It is one of only a few sports where people can begin at any age and fitness level, and still go on to fence competitively.
Ms Lagergren said fencing worked both the mind and body.
“It is great exercise and you have to out think your opponent. Then there is also the romance of the sword. If any of those things interest you, then fencing might be the sport for you,” she said.
She said despite the sword, fencing was actually a very safe sport and that there was no body contact involved.
The symposium will offer fencing sessions for all ages, guest speakers and the chance to buy and trade fencing gear.
It will be held on September 11, 3-5pm at St John’s Primary School, 494 Whitehorse Rd, Mitcham.
Details: 0450 556 330 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Nunawading-based Whitehorse Chevaliers Fencing Club taking the sport from obscurity
DESPITE being an Olympic sport with a long and rich history, fencing remains something of an unknown activity in Australia.
And Lisa Lagergren, president of Nunawading-based Whitehorse Chevaliers Fencing Club, can attest to that.
“We do get a few calls from people in the area asking if we can fix their fences,” she said. But, not content with remaining in sporting obscurity, the club has made great strides forward in recent years and boasts an impressive number of members, a number that appears set to grow.
“We have about 60 members at the moment,” Lagergren said. “Although, with Star Wars [and its light sabres] coming out next year, we expect that number to grow.
“We’re planning a few years of growth, trying to get up to 100 by expanding our junior classes. Then, maybe, we can look to getting a building of our own.”
And, with the club’s growth, encouraging results are starting to roll in.
“We’ve had some veteran fencers win a few titles over the year and one of our juniors won gold at the state championships,” Lagergren, herself a former competitor at a national level, said.
The sport features three, disciplines – foil, épée and sabre – with each featuring slightly different weapons, rules and strike zones. While it is a sport that demands great speed, agility, focus and discipline, Lagergren said fencing was something anyone could learn.
Whitehorse Chevaliers will welcome anybody interested in taking up the sport, from the age of five onwards, and more information is available at whitehorsechevaliers.com or by contacting Lisa Lagergren on 0450 556 330.
Article in the Leader Community ePaper Whitehorse Leader Monday, 18 Aug 2014
People flock to fencing club in épée proportions
IF YOU step into the Nunawading Community Centre on a Saturday morning, you had better be en garde.
Each week, members of the Whitehorse Chevaliers Fencing Club can be found practising their moves.Since forming the club four years ago, president Lisa Lagergren said she had received a good response from players and other people interested in taking up the sport.“It’s very physically active and very tactical, and once you get the hang of the basic moves it still keeps you busy for a lifetime,” Ms Lagergren said.
The club is attracting plenty of success, with members including David Cook and Tim Davis among those to win medals this year.
Cook, who has been fencing for more than 20 years, is the No.2 ranked veteran in Australia. He said he enjoyed the physical and mental challenge of fencing.
Davis, who has been competing for two years, said he had been excited to win a bronze medal in the Schools League Epee in May.
“I enjoy the amount of mental work that goes into it,” Davis said.
The club also runs classes for beginners and juniors.
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