Medals Across the Levels at Bury Teams

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  • September 2, 2014
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MEDALS ACROSS THE LEVELS AS TNAG GYMNASTS OPEN THEIR SEASON IN STYLE AT BURY TEAMS

For the second year running, the TNAG squad gymnasts descended en mass on Bury for their team competition, for the opening event of the voluntary competition season. It was another marathon day with four rounds showcasing seven different levels of competition across four rounds and twelve hours. Norfolk Academy gymnasts featured in every round with forty gymnasts in all from the club taking part..

It was an early start for the level 7 gymnasts where a mix of development squad and intermediate girls made up the two TNAG teams.

The blue team was made up of intermediate gymnasts training only four hours per week or less; Cara Ellaway, Charlotte Bevington, Lydia Hawker and Halle Glaysher all competing for the club either for the first time, or stepping up from recreational level to women’s artistic competition. The team put in some excellent performances on floor in particular with one of the highest team totals here but were just a little unsteady on beam. The team finished a very creditable sixth out of ten teams. Charlotte Bevington was the team’s top individual scorer, having shown some clean and classy gymnastics across the pieces, highlighted by scores of 11.8 on beam and 12.05 on floor to total 44.20 overall.

The red team consisted of four young gymnasts from DS06/07. Lois Hill, Sophie Pickering, Kiara King and Grace Davies battled bravely with the top teams in the competition for a team medal. All four of the gymnasts stuck beam which propelled the team towards the top of the medal rostrum, but which couldn’t quite compensate for the earlier mistakes on bars. The team were extremely happy to collect team silver medals, missing out on the gold by the smallest possible margin – 0.05. Individually, Sophia posted a total of 44.45 which saw her creep into the top ten overall. Grace Davies was the undoubted star of the round and one of the stars of the day. Still only six years old and standing far shorter than almost all of her competitors, Grace held the eye of gymnasts, coaches and the audience alike with her excellent gymnastics. She was one of the top scorers on all of the apparatus and top of the pile on bars (11.9) and beam (12.65). Grace’s massive individual total of 47.90 saw her take the gold by 1.5 marks, quite a margin in gymnastics terms and a true reflection of Grace’s domination of the level for this star of the future.

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With slightly lower entries at the next two levels, levels 6 and 5 took place together in the second round. TNAG fielded two teams at level 6 and one at 5.

The level 6 blue team of Ezara King, Bethany Gates, Eden Hill and Tabitha Morley had some good work with Bethany picking up one of the better bar scores (11.15) where she was one of the few gymnasts to be credited with the cast above horizontal requirement, and Ezara building a solid set of scores to total 44.45 as the team’s top individual finisher. The team finished 5th in a very closely fought competition.

Once again, the TNAG red team were in the battle for medals and all of the gymnasts made strong contributions to the team total. Milly Bourke had the top floor score of the round (12.85); and Lucy Hutchinson and Jessica Sharp both finished just a whisper outside of the individual medals in 4th and 6th places respectively, with Lucy picking up 11.25 on bars and Jess 12.5 on floor. However the team’s most consistent performer was its youngest member; Amelie Green was consistent across the apparatus and particularly impressive on beam (11.65, 2nd) on her way to the club’s second individual medal of the day. Amelie picked up the bronze with 45.10 and led the team to another team silver.

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The level 5 gymnasts also combined youth and experience with Naomi McCabe, Emma Wilder, Hannah Jones and Sophie Potter teaming up at this testing level (far more demanding than the previous Norfolk level 5). With a couple of the gymnasts not quite yet having the full requirements for the level with still a few weeks to go before the county championships, the team did very well to build on their strengths and complement each other well. The team’s set of floor routines in particular were a highlight of the day; a great set of individual routines to match the different styles of the team members. Naomi demonstrated some extremely difficult work with the only set of giants of the round on bars and one of the only flicks on beam but unfortunately made some errors on these pieces which kept her individual total slightly down. Naomi did however contribute strongly on vault (11.15) and floor (11.55), even despite her missing requirement here. Emma Wilder has recovered extremely quickly from a fracture sustained only a few months ago and has shown determination and drive to get competition ready at this level. She is much improved on both vault and bars, and was beautifully presented as ever on beam (12.35). Emma placed just outside of the individual medals in 4th. Sophie Potter conquered the backward walkover on beam which has worried her, and was fantastically expressive on floor (12.55) on her way to the individual bronze medal (45.90). With more confidence on beam, Sophie is capable of improving yet still on this total. Hannah Jones has often in the past succumbed to competition nerves on beam in the past but demonstrated great maturity here today scoring, 12.65 here and 12.05 for her lovely floor. Hannah’s strong set of scores saw her post a big total of 46.65 to take individual silver, missing out on gold by an agonising 0.1.

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In round three the level four gymnasts took to the floor and here TNAG fielded three strong teams. Team selections this early in the season are always tricky and the fact that the club was able to put out three strong teams at such a demanding level is true testament to its real strength in depth.

The white team of Abi Ashford, Iris Jaggard, Naomi Bash and Emily Ledsham-Darter (who stepped in at the very last minute) placed a very creditable fifth out of eight teams. Abi was the team’s top scorer, posting 45.2 despite a mistake on floor. Emily performed one of the best handspring vaults of the day (11.45), Naomi did a new half on, full off to pick up one of her best ever vault scores and the top of the round (11.90) and Iris was disappointed with a mistake on beam but scored well on bars and floor (11.3 on both).

Alice Tall, Hallie Snelling, Annie Shaw and Benodet Houston-Campbell made up the blue team which eventually were beaten only by their own team mates plus the victorious Pipers Vale team which consisted fully of elite in age gymnasts. Benodet did not have her best day with mistakes on beam and floor but still posted a respectable total and 11.45 was one of the best scores for a bar routine without giants. Hallie Snelling had a clean competition where she and most of her ECS3 team mates were performing at this level for the first time and adding huge amounts of new work to their programmes. Hallie scored very well for a stuck beam (11.80) but seemed to be a little harshly dealt with on bars and this kept her overall total slightly down. However 44.4 on her first level 4 outing is very impressive. Annie Shaw has worked hard to add new skills to her programme this year and she was rewarded with a good set of scores. Her beautifully choreographed floor routine was another highlight of the day as Annie posted a solid set of scores all in the 11s to total a note-worthy 45.70. Alice Tall was expected to be the top scoring individual gymnast and so it proved to be the case. Alice was boosted by great scores on her strongest pieces of bars and beam. Her well-shaped giants were well rewarded by the judges with 12.7 here and she was solid on beam for 11.90. Alice’s total of 47.00 is an excellent one and saw her place fifth overall; the top out of age individual of the level 4 competition. The team were proud to be announced as the bronze medalists.

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The club’s young in age level 4 gymnasts Emma Atkin and Lily Tranfield were joined in the red team by Annie Young, and Erin Houlihan. Annie has continued to make astounding progress with her skill development, but still lacks competition experience and had some costly mistakes today on beam and floor. Annie’s class though continued to shine through and she posted good scores on vault (11.35) and bars (12.5) to help the team’s bid for a medal. Erin has been out of competition for well over a year due to a long term injury but her commitment to the sport has never wavered and it is great to see her back again competing at a high level. Erin’s floor was excellently performed and she picked up the equal top score of the round here (12.20) and she also controlled the wobbles on beam (11.50). Erin hit an impressive total of 46.45. Lily had the tricky task of leading the team by going up first on three of the four apparatus but responded confidently to this pressure, hitting all of her routines confidently most particularly on beam where a good first routine is so important. Lily should be pleased with her overall total of 46.70. Emma Atkin is the only ECS3 gymnast to have experience at this level, having stepped up for team competitions in 2013. And once again Emma was one of the class gymnasts on show in the competition. She competed her backaway on bars for the first time after several months of preparation; the hard work and patience paying dividends with a 12.90 score here – the top of any TNAG gymnast on the day as a whole. Things didn’t go all Emma’s way today though, a fall on beam and a questionable spin on floor showing that there is still room for further improvement, but even with the mistakes, Emma took individual bronze with 47.70 to take her place on the medal rostrum and demonstrate her potential for the rest of the season ahead. Emma also led the red team to another set of team silver medals.

In the final round of the day, the level 3 gymnasts took to the floor, where the gymnasts competed in pairs rather than teams. They were joined by Poppy Chapman competing at pre-level 4 and Laura Rose Cooke at FIG.

Poppy should gain massively from the experience of this competition where she showed that she has the quality of work to compete with some of the region’s strongest 2006 born gymnasts. Poppy was justifiably rewarded with the top bar score of her level (11.75), and also scored well on both vault (12.5) and floor (11.7) with her only mistake coming on beam. Poppy picked up a well-deserved bronze medal with 46.55 and knows that with a little more confidence on beam, she could do very well at this level in the competitions ahead.

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Laura Rose Cooke took the opportunity to give her FIG routines a run out ahead of her forthcoming county and regional events. She dealt maturely with the different apparatus and hit all of her routines for some of her best scores at this level. Laura’s beam and floor artistry has improved considerably since working with Imogen Cairns recently and this has lifted her performances here to another level. Laura did particularly well to get through her tricky bar routine for 10.15. Her total of 45.25 gave her the individual gold. Whilst she was the only gymnast in her section, the medal was certainly well deserved.

There was a big entry in the level three section where Anna Houlihan and Chloe Moore from CCS1 were the first of the three TNAG level 3 pairs taking part. Neither gymnast quite has the full requirements across all apparatus but the girls complemented one another well with both posting strong scores. Anna showed nice technique on bars for 10.75, a good score at this level and Chloe picked up an excellent 12.00 for her well-presented floor routine. The pair should be pleased with a fifth place finish, with Chloe sixth individually, and both know that they are capable of making some further improvements before the county competition.

Grace Luckhurst and Kylah Tranfield had some big skills for the level but were slightly handicapped by neither of the gymnasts yet being quite ready with their somersault vault; they will both want to push on with this piece when they attempt to win through to regionals later in the month. Grace unfortunately suffered mistakes on bars and beam but did well to continue her routine on the latter. Grace has trained well over the summer and just needs to find routine consistency in the next few weeks. Grace received one of her best scores to date on floor (12.1) where her tumbling quality has improved greatly by omitting the flicks. Kylah didn’t have the best of warm ups but showed her ability to hit her bar and beam routines even without ideal preparation and picked up good scores on these her strongest pieces (11.6 bars, 1st; 11.5 beam, 4th) on her way to the individual bronze medal with 46.00. The pair also took the team silver medals.

The final pair were the blue team with Emma Hill and Eleanor Hayward eventually proving to be an unstoppable partnership. Their scores were strong on all apparatus. Emma was the only TNAG level 3 gymnast to perform a somersault vault, debuting her tuck tsuk for 12.2 and she followed this up with the second top bar score (11.4) and a very solid beam (11.9, 3rd). Emma’s total of 47.00 is a fantastic one for a gymnast that trains only three sessions per week and she was rewarded with an individual silver medal. Eleanor Hayward has a quality of work which sets her apart from many of her competitors and this was the case today. Eleanor has overcome her nerves in beam once again to hit a flowing and action packed set for 12.5 (2md) and her floor with a lovely double twist to open was the best of the level (12.2). These scores helped Eleanor to a gold medal winning individual total of 47.4 and saw her and Emma win the team title by a convincing margin of almost six marks.

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So, the curtain came down on the twelve hour day of competition with the TNAG squad having picked up two team trophies and a total of seven sets of team medals, three individual golds plus another seven individual medals in a hugely successful start to the 2014 voluntary season.

Categories: Competitions

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