Harlan Searle is on top of the world after Birmingham success

PUBLISHED: 18:52 01 August 2018 | UPDATED: 18:52 01 August 2018

Harlan Searle with the gold medal he won at the Tae Kwon Do World Championships held in Birmingham.

Harlan Searle with the gold medal he won at the Tae Kwon Do World Championships held in Birmingham.

Archant

Exmouth youngster Harlan Searle won gold at the recent Tae Kwon Do World Championships held in Birmingham.

Action from the Birmingham World Championships where Exmouth youngster Harlan Searle won a gold medal. Picture CONTRIBUTEDAction from the Birmingham World Championships where Exmouth youngster Harlan Searle won a gold medal. Picture CONTRIBUTED

Harlan, who has just finished primary school education and moves up into secondary education this coming September, loves all sports, but has a particular passion for both tae kwon-do (TKD) and rugby.

He may well be just a tender 11 years of age, but he is a powerful competitor on the mat and he was good value for his gold medal win in the Junior Boys’ Blue Belt Patterns discipline that was contested by youngsters from the ages of 11 to 14 with over 100 youngsters battling for a podium spot!

Harlan’s mother and father were at Birmingham to see him win while his three siblings were back at the family home in East Devon waiting to hear the hoped-for good news!

Harlan first started tae kwon-do in January 2016 as a member of the local club in Exmouth, which in turn is part of the Tae Kwon Do Association of Great Britain and Tae Kwon Do International. The TAGB is the largest martial arts organisation in Europe.

Harlan Searle on the podium in the gold medal spot after his win at the Tae Kwon Do World Championships held in Birmingham.Harlan Searle on the podium in the gold medal spot after his win at the Tae Kwon Do World Championships held in Birmingham.

The competition in Birmingham saw 4,000 competitors taking part, making it the largest ever held in the UK.

Harlan’s TKD instructor, Ben Cheriton, fourth degree black belt, said: “Harlan has worked so incredibly hard alongside the other 27 students from Exeter and Exmouth TAGB that were in action at Birmingham.

“There were well over a hundred in his division, so it really is a phenomenal achievement.

“I am extremely proud of him for the gravity of this achievement and the humility he has displayed in winning.

“He continues to work hard and I cannot wait to see where the next stage of his tae kwon-do journey takes him.”

The next Commonwealth Games, being held in Birmingham in 2022, is expected to feature TKD for the first time and, who knows, perhaps Exmouth will have presentation at that event!

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