INJURY curtailed Stourbridge Fencing Club's push for success at the British Veterans Championships last weekend.
The club was represented by only three competitors due to illness and injury, two of which then got hampered during the championships.
Peter Baron failed to win his 70+ age category when a knee injury flared up and hampered his movement, finally losing in the Last 32 to the eventual bronze medallist Carl Morris.
Janet Baron’s long lay-off through illness then caught up with her and she finished in an uncharacteristic low place.
Despite the introduction for the first time of a category for older fencers at the European Veterans Team championships in May, it is likely to be one of the few times that both miss out on selection.
Steve Potter, on the other hand guaranteed his selection – despite being another who has virtually not trained since the Veterans Winton Cup in September. He won all his first round fights in the Sabre event but dropped one in the second round. In the knockout stage he cruised through to the semi-final where he knocked out Morris. In the final he lost by a single hit 10-9 and had to settle for silver.
His wife, Emma Potter, is another on the injury list. She fell and banged her head on the floor at the National Championships in December and was taken to hospital with suspected concussion. She was discharged the same evening but was later found to have injured her neck.
Ranked 11th in the country prior to the event, Emma could have moved into the top 10 with a good result. Not only did she miss out on that opportunity but she has not yet been given the all clear to train.
Better news for the future of the club is that the new junior groups are flourishing, now with two groups meeting on a Tuesday and Thursday. Children can join these groups at any time, subject to vacancies.
For older would-be-fencers the club has re-introduce fairly regular free taster sessions. Those hooked by the sport can then join one of its beginners’ courses. Details of the various classes are on the club website at stourbridgefencingclub.co.uk