NORTHBOROUGH – Northborough has a new, young karate champion after 8-year-old Smit Roy won a gold medal at the National Karate Championships in Spokane, Washington.
The event was held from June 30 to July 3.
Smit’s gold medal is in Individual Kumite, where competitors fight and have to land punches and kicks on their opponent for points.
“I was happy, and I was proud of myself,” Smit said in a recent interview with the Community Advocate. “My parents were also proud, and I’m happy that my parents supported me to go there.”
Smit also won a silver medal for team kumite, where three people form a team and must win two one-on-one matches against another team.
Smit then won bronze medals for team kata — a synchronized movement with different karate techniques — and mixed kata — which has boys and girls performing together.
He competed in the 8-year-old novice division, which is restricted to those at the green
belt level with one to two years of experience.
Smit’s mother, Dona Roy, said that he started karate because she wanted him to learn self-defense.
He has been learning karate at the MassDojo in Westborough.
“He never misses a class, he’s always there practicing,” said Dona.
Dona said that, because Smit was enjoying karate, they decided he should try to participate in a competition. He attended the U.S. Open for karate in Las Vegas in 2021, where he won gold in individual kumite.
As a result, he was selected to compete in Spokane.
Smit said that he looks up to Clay Morton, a Junior World Cup champion who taught Smit kata at MassDojo. He also thanked his instructor, Eric Rossini, for teaching him karate.
Smit wants to represent the United States in the Olympics and become a world champion in karate. He previously competed against other nations at the Junior International Cup, also held in Las Vegas in 2021, where he won a silver medal in individual kata and kumite.
“I’m really proud and glad that he’s sticking to his karate,” Dona said. “He finally went to nationals and got the gold, and he can call himself a champion now.”