By Devin Jones
In a room filled with metal swords and fencing equipment, Kyle Foster proudly displays his most treasured items — the three medals his team won during the Commonwealth Veterans Fencing Championship in Scotland earlier this month.
Foster, the general manager of Ryerson’s fencing team, took part in the tournament that ran from Nov. 13-16, coming away with two bronze and a gold medal in men’s team epee.
“We honestly did not expect to win the gold medal because the level of talent was just so high. Everything came together and everyone did exactly what they had to do,” Foster said. “It was a very emotional experience, hearing your national anthem being played at the end.”
Epee, a type of blade, is where Foster and Darcy Gates, the assistant coach at Ryerson, succeeded in winning gold. The two bronze medals came in men’s sabre team – another type of blade – and from Foster’s individual performance in men’s epee.
At six-foot-four, Foster’s height makes him ideal for fencing. Just as in boxing, having a long reach can be a “tremendous advantage.” A veteran of 25 years, Foster played basketball in high school, but his lack of opportunity to develop and “basically no skills” left him wanting more. It wasn’t until a teacher — deciding to form a fencing team — noticed his height and asked him to join.
While In Scotland for two weeks, Foster also took time to “walk some golf courses,” and spend time with his father, who flew to the event to support his son.
“My dad was able to make the trip, which was great,” Foster said. “It’s the first time he’s seen me fence outside of local tournaments.”
Foster will be participating in the Canada Cup taking place in Montreal this weekend and is currently ranked number one in Canada for epee and saber in the Veteran category.