I have just returned from the British Championships at the Echo Arena in Liverpool which also served as the final trial for the Olympic team selection and WHAT A WEEKEND IT WAS!!!
In my first All Around competition since returning from my ankle injury I produced a near perfect competition and walked away with five medals including 2 Gold and 3 Bronze.
The competition was staged over two days with the British All Around and Apparatus finals on the Saturday and the British Masters competition which is a format that allows all of the age groups to challenge for medal on the Sunday.
Saturday was always going to be a tough competition for me as I not only needed to impress the Olympic team selectors but I would also be competing against the five man GB squad that were recently crowned the European Team Champions in Montpellier, France.
Well, I needed to impress and I really believe I did……… apart from a small break in form on the Pommel Horse and the High Bar I produced a near faultless display across all six apparatus posting a score of 90.05 which is just above the 90.0 set as part of the selection criteria for the Olympic team. The 90.05 also placed me higher than all of the European Team Champions bar Daniel Purvis who also put in an excellent display to claim Gold. My performance on the Pbars was my stand out performance of the day and I posted a score of 15.550 to claim Gold which is also higher than the 15.300 set in the selection criteria and I also claimed Bronze on the Pommel Horse with a score of 15.450.
Sunday was another day and another opportunity to impress…….I had qualified for all of the Masters finals apart from vault as I had chosen not to perform the two vaults needed to qualify for the vault final. Well, I had another near perfect day apart from my performance on the Pommel Horse when an error in my hand placement caused me to sit on the Pommel…. DOH! But apart from that I again put in some solid routines that eventually saw me claim Bronze on the High Bar and Gold on the Pbars. The Pbars were yet again my stand out performance of the day when I scored a massive 15.700 which is way above the selection criteria for the Olympic Team but more importantly it was the highest score posted by a British Gymnast this year: GET IN THERE!
All in all I had a great weekend with 10 clean routines out of a possible 11 which shows that my consistency has finally returned but, more importantly, that my injury worries are now behind me. Hopefully what I have achieved this weekend and with my recent Silver Medal on the Pommel Horse at the Grand Prix in Ghent will help me grab one of the spots on the Olympic team
Away from training, I got to meet the Opus Energy team (hello to those of you that are reading this blog!) last week at the launch of Opus Energise, the company’s wellbeing scheme. It’s great to work with a company that realises the value of getting its staff involved in sports and thinking about being healthy. I hope that my talk inspired everyone to stay fit and healthy and get the most out of the new Opus Energise scheme. Good luck to them all with their pedometer challenge!
I am now off to Lilleshall for our final GB training session ahead of the team announcement on Wednesday the 4th of July. Fingers crossed…..