A Tribute to a True Master
Recently our Maitre Claude Seguin celebrated his 65th Birthday. A
milestone by any means, but for someone like Claude it is also the marking
of a 40 year career in Fencing, almost 34 of which have been set in
Saskatchewan. You cannot say the word “fencing” in Saskatchewan and not say
the name Claude Seguin in the same breath, for they are one and the same.
We have a presence in this sport thanks to the dedication of this Maitre
who was born in Ontario, but chose to head out West to make his mark on the
sport. A Maitre who has been sought the world over for his expertise, but
who instead of leading the glamourous life he might have had in New York, or
Europe decided instead to create his own legacy right here on the Prairies.
Here are just a few (not all) of his accomplishments:
Claude Seguin – A Timeline in History
- 1973 – began his coaching career in Ontario.
- 1976 – coached in Manitoba for the next 3 years.
- 1979 – became head coach of the Saskatoon Fencing Club and
Provincial Coach of the Saskatchewan Fencing Association.
- 1983 – Coach of the Saskatchewan Team at the Western Canada
- 1986 – The first Canadian to achieve the title of Maitre
(Achieved NCI Level IV in all three weapons)
- 1987 – Coach of the Saskatchewan Team at the Western Canada
- 1988 – Saskatchewan Dairy Producers Coach of the Year
- 1990 – Coach of the Saskatchewan Team at the Western Canada
- 1990 – 1996 – Vice President of the Coaches Association of
- 1990 – 2000 Coach of Saskatchewan Team at 10 World Cadet
- 1991 – Coach of the Saskatchewan Team at the Canada Games
- 1991 – Coach of the Canadian Team at the World University Games
- 1992 – Prepared and successfully qualified one Canadian fencer
Barcelona Olympics (Allan Francis)
- 1992 – Fencing Academy of Canada Junior Development Coach of the
- 1993 – Fencing Academy of Canada Junior Development Coach of the
- 1995 – Coach of the Saskatchewan Team at the Canada Games
- 1995 – Coach of the Canadian Team at the World Universtiy Games
- 1996 – Fencing Academy of Canada Junior Development Coach of the
- 1999 – Coach of the Saskatchewan Team at the Canada Games
- 2002 – Coach of the Canadian National Junior Epee Team World
Junior Championships (Antalya, Turkey) – where son Jean-Pierre won
the World Cadet Championships in epee.
- 2003 – Advisor to the Canada Games
- 2003 – Coach of the Canadian National Junior Epee Team World
Junior Championships (Plovdiv, Bulgaria)
- 2004 – Coach of the Canadian National Junior Epee Team World
Junior Championships (Linz, Austria)
- 2006 – Inducted into the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame
- Ongoing – Consistently has placed at least one fencer from
Saskatchewan on the National Team each year.
- Ongoing – Prepared coaches at all levels, including Level IV,
and runs a coaching clinic each summer.
From his bio on the SFA Website:
“Claude has represented Canada in every possible way in the sport from
being a team coach, referee, manager, delegate, armourer and medic,
frequently all at the same time, and performing well at all tasks. His
apprenticeship coaching program is the model upon which other tutelage
programs have been established, and he carries on his successful program
among such distant cities as Saskatoon, Regina, Moose Jaw and Prince Albert,
and Swift Current. Among his best athletes have been 2002 World Champion Jean-Pierre
Seguin, 1992 Olympian Allan Francis, National Women’s Foil team member Lavinia
Surdu, and Junior National team members Tarsch
Bakos in épée, Kent Shirley in foil, and National Team Member of the
Women’s Foil Fencing Team Shannon Comerford, as well as
many other Cadet,
Junior, and Senior National team members.”
Today marks a milestone for Claude’s life, and the continuation of the
legacy he has built here in Saskatchewan, but he’s not done yet. For those
who have yet to experience the power of Claude not to worry – he has a new
generation of fencers coming up in his Saskatchewan system, either under his
direct tutelage, or under the coaches that he helped to train.
As he marks this milestone in his life, we honour our Maitre with words
of heartfelt thanks, words of humour, and words that are Claude’s very own:
A few of our favourite “Claude-isms”
(Thanks to John Brunning for sharing!)
“If Joe Schmuck from nowhere Sask. can do it ….”
“Since you are leading the drills anyway perhaps you should take a
The 2011 Saskatchewan Provincial Fencing Team