Local fencer competes on U.S. national team at Olympic qualifier in Japan
ROCHESTER, N.Y. — A local fencer on the U.S. national team has traveled the world to compete at Olympic qualifying competitions, including at Tokoname, Japan on Friday.
He’s a member of the 12-person national team for men’s foil, one of the three fencing weapon categories. Four members of the team will be selected as Olympians for the 2024 Paris summer games. James Bourtis has been fencing with the Rochester Fencing Club since he was seven. He’s been all over the world this past year — including Paris, Shanghai and Cairo.
Bourtis is currently in Japan with his brother Evan, a digital writer here at News10NBC. Bourtis explains what it means to be competing at this level.
“I do feel fortunate. There’s a lot of people at every single tournament, and people who are really willing to put everything on the line to make the Olympic team,” he says.
Bourtis isn’t the first successful fencer out of the Rochester Fencing Club. Sisters Iris and Felicia Zimmerman competed in the 2000 Olympic games and now own the club.