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1st WTF World Taekwondo Poomsae Championships Wrap Up in Success
1st WTF World Taekwondo Poomsae Championships

The 1st WTF World Taekwondo Poomsae Championships concluded its three-day event in Seoul on Sept. 6, 2006 in a resounding success.

The inaugural WTF-promoted poomsae event, which took place at the Olympic Gymnasium in Olympic Park, drew 590 athletes and officials from 59 countries.

"Based on the performances and the keen participation of 59 countries over the past few days, I am heartened to say that the 1st WTF World Taekwondo Poomsae Championships have been a resounding success," said Dr. Chungwon Choue, president of the World Taekwondo Federation, during the closing ceremony of the championships.

WTF President Choue said, "Korea has dominated the championships this year and I congratulate the Korean team on that. Nonetheless, I take heart in the dedication of all athletes of all nations." "Based on the performances of these past days, I believe that other nations will very soon enhance their standards and produce worthy champions of their own. I look forward to that."

He continued to say, "With more accomplishments, I believe that the discipline of poomsae will someday be an important sport of the International Paralympic Committee." "For this reason, I am pleased to announce that next year's poomsae championships will feature athletes with disabilities as well. We aim to reach out to all poomsae enthusiasts and be a global sport-for-all."

"The emergence of poomsae and the inauguration of Taekwondo Day is testament to the important role that the World Taekwondo Federation can play in the international community," he said. "I believe the World Taekwondo Federation has the potential to be an omnipresent partner in the propagation of the Olympic Movement."

The 2nd WTF World Taekwondo Poomsae Championships are scheduled to take place in Incheon, Korea.

Samsung, the global partner of the WTF, sponsored the inaugural poomsae championships. Samsung also sponsored the 6th WTF World Junior Taekwondo Championships in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, on July 26-30, 2006. It will also sponsor the 1st WTF World Cup Taekwondo Team Championships scheduled for Sept. 14-18, 2006 in Bangkok, Thailand.

Prior to the closing ceremony, WTF President Choue honored six international referees for their "outstanding and exemplary" officiating at the Poomsae Championships. The six are Mr. Kang-in Kim of Korea, Tong-wan Shin of Great Britain, Varo Darid Barragan of Panama, Carmen Navarro of Spain, Teong Chin Lim of Singapore, and Nar Syshidah Binti of Malaysia.

Of the 59 participating countries, 13 countries earned at least one medal at the inaugural Poomsae Championships. Korea swept all the 16 gold medals up for grabs, followed by Iran with four silver medals and three bronze medals and Turkey with three silvers and two bronzes.

Spain came next with two silvers and six bronzes, followed by Australia with two silvers and Germany with one silver and one bronze. Vietnam, France, Denmark and the Netherlands each clinched one silver medal. Chinese Taipei won two bronzes, while Italy and Russia earned one bronze.






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