I took the opportunity to catch up with an only slightly jet-lagged Rafferty following his return from the Caribbean last week.
Rafferty was first introduced to the world of Karate at the age of 4 since when, in just 7 short years, he has been propelled to the dizzy heights of the World Championship Competition in Curacao! On his return flight he ran the risk of being charged for extra baggage as his luggage included two splendid Silver Medals!
Inspired in his early years by Kung Fu Panda(!) Rafferty currently follows a rigorous training schedule which includes up to 6 classes a week across the county and beyond. His competition focus includes the disciplines of Kata and Kumite. In the former, the focus is on points scoring, not hurting the opponent, whilst the latter discipline demonstrates the art of self-defence through a series of set pieces or ‘pretend fighting’, without a partner. These moves are accompanied by vocal calls or shouts designed to frighten off any opponent.
With his sights set firmly on the Olympics in 2024, Rafferty has the focus and determination to achieve everything he sets his mind to – second in the world at age 10? Rafferty is on top of the world and looks set to stay there!