A STUDENT from Bradford Tomiki Aikido Club managed to break an astonishing international record over the weekend in Dartford.

On Saturday 16 July, a day after his 16th birthday, Bradley Godsman became the youngest international medalist of all time in the British Aikido Association.

He claimed a bronze medal with partner and trainee instructor, Bradlee Clarkson, and the Bradford Tomiki Aikido Club pair went on to shine in performing an 'Open Kata', a detailed choreographed pattern of martial arts movements made to be practised alone, however, it can also be reviewed within groups and in unison when training.

With Godsman only turning 16 on the day before the event, he was able to qualify as an Uke (someone who helps demonstrate a kata) in the senior competition and his partner, Clarkson, was overjoyed with the16 year-old's display.

He said: "For me, I've known how to perform the kata for quite a long time, so I think a lot of the praise should go to Brad (Godsman). He has been a member of the Bradford Tomiki Aikido Club for around ten years now and he's really excelling.

"For a junior that is learning a sequence of techniques which are very difficult, especially at that age, he has picked up a lot of different techniques and skills that would be the equivalent of earning your black belt. That's the direction Brad is going; usually you see students working towards that level when they are 18,19 and 20 but Brad is only 16 so it shows the level he is working at. He's performing well ahead of the curve and I have no doubt that he'll be an international medalist one day."

Clarkson added: "Myself and everyone at the club are extremely proud of Brad. Personally, I've only known him for around four years but Garrett (lead instructor at Bradford Tomiki Aikido Club) has watched him develop since he was around five years old and we are both thoroughly impressed with the steps he is taking to continue improving.

"I do feel he has got a great future in the sport and the weekend proved that. He was approached by the Great Britain team to attend some future training sessions, and me and him will be heading to Japan for the World Championships next year, so it's all very exciting."

The competition in Dartford had a total of around 200-300 competitors from seven different countries such as the Netherlands, France, Ireland and Ukraine, and England.

Bradford Tomiki Aikido Club took a team of around 20 competitors (Juniors and Seniors) with them and succeeded with bronze, silver and gold awards all around in various age categories.

Reflecting on the event, Clarkson said: "I've got to say, I was really impressed with everyone who competed; it was a great standard of competition and everyone from our club did very well.

"Not only that, it was brilliant to be back at an international level championship, with the last couple of years putting a halt to that. The event was run well and everyone seemed to ennjoy themselves which was great."