Historic seventh Dan for record man Harry

Wednesday, 13 September 2017

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REN Bu Kan Judo Club coach Harry McGuigan (pictured) has just become the first person in the history of the Irish Judo Association to be promoted to Black Belt 7th Dan.
The honour was bestowed on Harry by the International Judo Federation and was officially announced at the weekend.
In judo you can only get as far as 5th Dan by fighting for points in major competitions.
In 2005 the Irish Judo Association gave Harry, who was a 5th Dan, the honorary grade of 6th Dan in recognition of his achievements over the years to Irish judo making him only the second person in Irish Judo to achieve this.
However, the Dungannon man didn't stop there, he continued fighting in the Masters(veterans) events all over the world and won five world championship medals as well as three Europeans.
He has been Open champion of five different countries and in 2014 at the age of 73 he became Irish judo's oldest ever World Champion. His club Ren Bu Kan has consistently been in the top three clubs in Ireland both for success and for numbers.
The Irish Judo Association cannot award higher than 6th Dan but the board of the IJA submitted Harry's record both as a coach and competitor for the 12 years since he was awarded his 6th Dan to the International Judo Federation and they decided to award him with a 7th Dan, making him the first person in Irish Judo to achieve such a prestigious honour.


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