Our World Champions | Murphy ATA
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Our World Champions

Becoming a World Champion is an incredibly prestigious accomplishment that can take years, sometimes even a lifetime. Our competitors spend all year competing at tournaments around the country, and if they’re ranked highly enough after the tournament season, they are allowed to compete for World Champion at World Championships, which is held in Little Rock every year in June. The following are the Murphy ATA World Champions, and we are so proud to call them our own.


Master Jack Hornbuckle

2013 Weapons and Combat Weapons World Champ, 6th Degree 30-39 Year-Old Men’s Division
2010 Weapons World Champ, 4th and 5th Degree 30-39 Year-Old Men’s Division

“Winning World Champion was absolutely incredible. This was something I had dreamed of all my life, but never quite got there. To actually reach it was a pretty special thing – almost surreal at first. The sound that exploded from the ‘cheering section’ of friends, family, and students when I won was something I’ll never forget, and I would encourage anybody in taekwondo to work for that moment – it took me 24 years, but I finally did it, and you can too.”

“The greatest benefit of taekwondo for me has been the friends that I have made. I’ve been competing with the same group of guys since I was young, some even since I was a kid, and these relationships have stuck. The discipline and physical training come with the territory and these are all incredibly important aspects of taekwondo, but that doesn’t come anywhere close to the friends and students in my ring and at my school who have become family to me.”

Miss Mallory Martin

2012 Weapons and Sparring World Champ, 1st Degree 18-29 Year-Old Women’s Division

“To prepare for World Championships this year, I took a lot of private lessons with Master Hornbuckle and Mr. Goodman, on top of a lot of practice. When I won World Champ for the first time, I was shocked, and couldn’t believe it, but I was also very excited.”

“For me, the greatest benefit of taekwondo is the friends made within both the taekwondo school and the competition ring.”

“Winning is not just given to you. You have to practice and get help on technique to help you get better. On top of that, I couldn’t of have won World Champion without the love and support of everyone at the Murphy ATA school.”


Mr. James Simms

2011 Forms and Sparring World Champ, 1st Degree 40-49 Year-Old Men’s Division
2010 Forms World Champ, 1st Degree 40-49 Year-Old Men’s Division


“To prepare for my World Champ wins, obviously I went to class on a regular basis, but that’s not really enough. A person must listen and follow the instruction of senior instructors, but I find it equally helpful to listen to my peers and lower ranks. Everyone has the ability to critique and multiple points of view are useful and should be valued.”

“I try not to lose sight but to enjoy the entire process. For me, placing in tournaments is the icing on the cake. The experience as a whole is worth it only if you have fun – even if you don’t win!”

“Self-analysis and dedication is a MUST. A person needs be critical of their techniques and have the willingness and drive to improve, but be realistic on the time and effort required to meet their expectations.”

“If your only goal is to obtain medals, most likely a void will be felt shortly after tournaments, even if you perform well. We all participate in classes and should embrace working as a team and try to understand and appreciate the challenges each have and work required to overcome. We as a school depend on each other to succeed!”

Mr. Greg Potter

2011 Weapons World Champ, 1st Degree 40-49 Year-Old Men’s Division

“Winning World Champion was a wave of emotions. I wanted to scream for joy, but humility keeps you focused.”

“The greatest benefit of taekwondo has been the friends I have met who have become family, and of course the physical benefits and discipline.”

“My next goals are to get to 2nd Degree and focus on mastering those weapons and forms, then competing for World Champion in weapons and forms again by 2013.”

“What makes it possible for any of us to compete on a high level is the way our school supports each other. MURPHY ROCKS!”


Mr. Tom Talbott

2009 Weapons World Champ, 1st Degree 30-39 Year-Old Men’s Division


“Winning World Champion was nothing short of amazing. I don’t think it sank in as to what I had just accomplished until later that night. It is probably the proudest moment of my life. Not for the accomplishment, but that I had so many friends and family there to share it with. It is with great pride that I can say that I was Murphy ATA’s first world champion.”

For me, the greatest benefit of taekwondo would be teaching me to look beyond myself and what is easy. Like they say, ‘if it were easy, everyone would do it.’ Also, it has showed me how much I love teaching the kids what I have learned.”

“My next two goals are become a certified instructor and to attain the rank of 3rd degree black belt. Also, to once again reach the pinnacle of competition and win another world title.”

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