Karate (2007)Mark Minarik is a fourth degree black belt registered with the International Traditional Karate Federation and he has competed at seven world competitions, six Pan-American events and three invitational world tournaments. He was born in Esterhazy, Saskatchewan, in 1962 and as a young boy, savoured the fruits from the family garden. Mark started training in 1978, won his first titles at the provincial finals in 1980, and he enjoyed first national success at the Canadians in Regina in 1988. In 1991, he was a member of the Saskatchewan team which competed at the nationals in Montreal, where he participated in the kumite free sparring events. He competed in the Pan-American championships in Mexico City in 1992, where he won bronze in both kumite and kata. Mark was a member of the Canadian team at the world championships in Montreal in 1992 where the team took third in kata and enbu. He was also part of the Canadian contingent which took second in kata and fourth in enbu at the world championships in Italy in 1994. Mark moved to Saskatoon from Regina in 1995 and became chief instructor for Midwest Karate. He won the silver medal at the Pan-American championships in Argentina in 1995 and admits he has to stop the blocking with his face. Mark gained the gold medal in kata at the Pan-American championships in Colombia in 1997. He got a chance to train with world champion Avi Rokah while at the World Cup in Poland in 1999. Mark posted a bronze medal victory for Canada at Chile in 1999 and shares the moment with Randy Peters, Brian Dube and coach Don McKenzie. He emerged with another bronze medal in kata at the world championships in Italy in 2000.