Stephen's aims for Oceanic fight team
MARTIAL ARTS: If Rachael Stephens can fight her way to a gold medal in the National Taekwondo Championships, she'll secure a position in the Oceanic team.
The Coominya Cho Dan Ba (red-black belt) secured her place on the Queensland team bound for Bendigo this month after claiming two gold and a silver at the Queensland State Selections.
But with more competitors at the National Championships, Stephens will be in for a good fight.
"I'm used to only having about three competitors,” she said.
"I'm a bit nervous now because it's a lot more competitors than I'm used to.
"It's a bigger competition than the other ones I go to.”
If Stephens claims a gold in Bendigo, she'll head to Fiji for the Oceanic Championships - a goal she has her sights firmly set on. Stephens will be in full training leading up to the championships having had a few weeks off with a broken toe.
During the state selections, Stephens broke her toe in the sparring event during the first round.
But that didn't hold the 12-year-old back, as she went on to claim gold in the pair poomsai and in her sparring weight divisions.
"I haven't been able to do anything for the past few weeks because of my toe,” she said.
Stephens started taekwondo three years ago, and has since progressed to coaching other fighters at the Russell McCarthur Taekwondo in Coominya.
For the past six weeks, she's coached a small group of students, while conducting the lessons in Korean.
"Taekwondo helps with my fitness, self defence and to protect myself,” she said.
She trains five nights each week as well as coaching.