Andrej Raisch, HEAD Coach
Andrej Raisch started to learn fencing in the world's top fencing club, Fecht-club Tauberbischofsheim, Germany, when he was 5 years old. He has joined the German national junior fencing team at the age of seventeen, and the national team at eighteen. He has been the national champion in Germany, made top eight results in numerous international competitions, including winning the bronze medal for the Men's Foil Team event in European Championships in 2012, and was awarded as the "Athlete of the Year".
As one of the top fencers in Germany, Andrej continued his career path of excellence and development to transit to a fencing coach. He has been coaching at his home club, Fecht-club Tauberischofsheim, since 2012, and made great results in less than 3 years - his students made top 8 individual finalists and champion in team events in the national tournaments in Germany in 2014.
Andrej began to coach at our fencing club since February 2016. In only a few months, the students have made great progresses and won numerous medals in local and national competitions, including Women's Cadet National Champion and Division I Top 8 Medal in 2016 Summer Nationals. In 2017, his students made even greater results, including Y14 Men's Foil Team Champion in North American Cup, Junior World Cup Champion, and top 8 Finalist in Cadet World Championships.
By working with the students consistently, Andrej helps them to build strong foundation and also improve their technical skills and mentality. He is energetic, highly motivated, cheerful and encouraging, strict but kind to students. Not only can he help the young fencers to improve their technical skills, broaden their knowledge in fencing strategies, he can also infuse the club with positive energy, serve as a great role model for the fencers and help them to grow mentally and psychologically.
Siarhei (Sergei) Byk, Fencing Coach
Siarhei (Sergei) Byk is an internationally recognized fencing athlete and professional coach. As an athlete, he has served in the national team at Cadet, Junior and Senior levels since 2005. His achievements include the silver and bronze medals in European U23 Championships, bronze medal in European Zonal Qualifier to 2016 Olympics in Rio, multi-time top 8 finalists in World Cups and European Championships, and national champion in Belarus for over 20 times. He ranked #1 in U23 European point standings in two consecutive seasons (2011/2012, 2012/2013), #27 in the world ranking for Senior Men's Foil in 2012/2013. During these years, Sergei trained with his coach, Alexandr Romankov, the world's best foil fencer of all time, who won 10 world championship titles and 5 Olympic medals, and learned a lot about fencing and coaching.
Sergei received two Master's degree (Olympics Sports in Fencing, and Sports Organization) from the National University of Physical Culture and Sport of Belarus in 2013 and 2015 respectively. In 2014, he was selected as an assistant fencing coach in the Olympic Preparation Center for Belarus national cadet and junior fencing team. His students became medalists in national and international competitions, two of them made into the Belarus national team at senior level. He came to the United States in 2016 and duplicated his success - many of his students made great progress by earning medals in high level competitions and improved their rankings in national point standings.
Guest Coaches and Fencers
Coach Dmitri came from a legend fencing family in the former Soviet Union where his father and uncle were both world champions. His uncle, Alexandr Romankov, with 10 World Championship titles and 5 Olympic medals, is the greatest foil fencer of all time. IFA coach Sergei Byk used to learn fencing from coaches Alexandr and Dmitri.
Coach Dmitri has extensive experience in foil coaching. He coached at the Belarusian national team, Stanford University, and Taiwan junior national team. During 2015-2018, he was the foil assistant coach at Ohio State University, helping the team with back-to-back 2nd place finishes at the NCAA National Championships, and individuals to NCAA gold, silver and bronze medals. His student Eleanor Harvey ranked top 8 in Women's Foil at 2016 Rio Olympics. Coach Dmitri joined the college fencing team at Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) as head coach in March 2018. In less than 9 months, two of his students from SCAD fencing achieved great results in January North American Cup (NAC) 2019, making top 8 and top 16 results in Division I Men’s and Women’s Foil respectively. Coach Dmitri also teaches young students at EPIC fencing club in Atlanta GA, with medalists in the March NAC 2019.
Coach Dmitri and his students participated in 2018 IFA Winter camp, and will join us in the 2019 Spring camp as well.
Coaches Aleksander Borkowski and Richard Junghanns are the foil coaches from Olympic Fencing Center (OFC), Bonn, Germany. Their students include the top junior Men's and Women's fencers in Germany. In August 2018, both coaches and six fencers from OFC came to Boston for a 2-week joint camp, opening to fencers of all ages and levels.
Coach Richard has been the guest coach at IFA Boston every summer since 2016. He is well known by the experienced IFA fencers and parents. We are excited to see him again!
Jeremy is trained with IFA fencers during February and March 2018. He was the Cadet and Junior national member for France and is currently the senior national team member of Cote D'Ivoire. He has been fencing in numerous international fencing tournaments and earned the bronze medal in 2017 African Zonal Championships in Le Caire, Egypt. His current FIE world ranking (as of February 2018) is #36.
Alexander is trained in Germany. He is currently the senior team member in German national team. He got the top 8 finishes in 2016 Satellite tournaments and 2013 World Cup, and finished top 16 in multiple international tournaments. Alexander came to train IFA students in 2017 winter camp.
Andre Sanita is the #1 Men's foil fencer in Germany. He was the bronze medalist in European Championships, and also made top 16 in 2017 World championships Men's Foil in Leipzig, Germany. Right after the 2017 World Championships, Andre came to Boston and joined us in the summer camp with advanced and youth fencers.