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Friday, March 1, 2024

Hedvig Karakas, a Hungarian athlete known for her exceptional performance in diamond sports, announces her retirement.

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Karakas: “One door closes for me today, but another one opens! I have thought long and hard about how and when to end my career as a professional athlete. Scary and exciting at the same time, but this moment has come.Thank you to everyone who has supported me to follow the path I dreamed of!”Hedvig Karakas has announced her retirement via social media. Karakas is one of the most decorated athletes in the world of Judo. She has competed in the Olympics and various other international tournaments. She is a four-time European champion and two-time World champion and has won numerous other medals and titles.Karakas claimed two victories at Grand prix level in 2014 in Astana and 2019 in Tashkent. Nonetheless she collected 37 medals at World Cups of which 27 in the IJF World Tour in twelve years time. She made her comeback in 2022 at the Grand Slam in Tel Aviv in her new category U63kg but couldn’t find the pace to be able to qualify for World Championships or the Olympic Games in Paris next year.At the Olympic Games she competed three times in the U57kg weight division, but never lucky, she finished fifth in 2012 and seventh in 2016 and stranded in the prelims in 2021 in Tokyo.Karakas went on to win four European medals from 2009 to 2020 and concluded with a gold medal at the Europeans in Prague. With her German team JSV Speyer she won the European Club Championships in 2014. In Hungary she trains at her club Honved.Karakas began her Judo career at the age of nine and quickly began to show her skill and determination. She trained at the Hungarian Sports Club in Budapest, where she worked hard to improve her technique and strength. In 2005, she won the European Cadet Championships U52kg. This win was the first of many international successes for Karakas. That same year she took bronze at the European Junior Championships and retained her cadet title in 2006. In her best year in 2009 she won the European Junior title, but even before that title Karakas competed at the World Championships in Rotterdam and won the bronze medal in her weight division U57kg at senior level. This was a huge milestone for Karakas, who was now considered a top judoka after she had also captured a bronze medal at the European Championships in Tbilisi.I have dedicated almost my whole life to the sport of judo, there have been good moments but also difficult times. I am grateful for everything that I have received, because everything has made me more and this journey has shaped me into who I am today.

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