King Eddies Quartet Clinch GB Euro Place
UPDATED: August 18, 2011
By Simon Parkinson
KING Edmund Gym Club is basking in the afterglow of another highly successful period on the acrogymnastics front!
Four of our top performers have been selected to represent Great Britain in this yearâs European Championships, which are being held in Varna, Bulgaria in October.
Womenâs pair Shanie-Redd Thorne, 15, and Danielle Jones, 12, have won their first GB call-up as a young but highly-promising junior duo, while 13-year-old Jake Underdown teams up again with his trusted partner Christopher Child, 16.
The magnificent menâs pairing of Jake and Chris took the sport by storm in 2010 when they became world champions in the 11-16 age bracket, a feat that enables them to head for the Euros now as fully-fledged juniors.
In order to be selected for the European Championships, King Edmundâs four competitors were asked to hit the heights in a series of three testing trial events. To cap it all off, our experienced head coach, Nikki Thorne, has been called up as travelling Great Britain coach to prepare the juniors for the rigours of Bulgarian competition.
Nikki said: âIt goes without saying weâre all tremendously proud of what has been achieved. We at King Edmund GC have had three consecutive world championship gold-medal successes, Jake and Chris being the latest, and it wasnât so long ago that Maiken (Thorne) and Mollie (Grehan) won bronze medals in the World Games in Taiwan.â
King Eddies have been savouring more achievements of late, not least in the British Schools Championships at Stoke-on-Trent.
Danielle Jones, Josh Smith (U13s mixed pair); Jake Underdown, Josh Smith (U13 menâs pair); Beth Nolder, Danielle Jones (U13 womenâs pair) and Ryan Bennett, Josh Smith, Jake Underdown, Beth Nolder, Danielle Jones and Georgia Loxham-Flynn (U13 mixed six) all triumphed at the championships with gold medal-winning performances.
There were more successes too thanks to the exploits of Shanie-Redd Thorne and Alex Millichamp (Over 13 mixed pair), who came third, and gold medallists Millie Theobald, Morgan Caldecoat, Chelsea Bennett, Tasha Lawrence, Jessica Howard and Shanie-Redd, who finished tops in the over 13 âsixâ section.
Jubilant Gemma Makes A Medal-Winning Leap
WHEN our courageous gymnast Gemma Ponting was called upon to make the biggest leap of her young career, she rose spectacularly to the challenge!
A foot injury sustained by the unfortunate Shannon McClurg ten days before the South West Championships at Taunton meant King Eddie coaches were faced with an ultimatum â to withdraw Shannonâs team-mates Millie Theobald and Tianna McClurg from competing in the Grade 4 Womenâs Group class, or find a willing partner for them at the eleventh hour to ensure their show could go on!
Step forward ten-year-old Gemma, who had been more accustomed to Prep B Womenâs Pairs encounters in tandem with Fiona Cornick.
However, the giant step up in class did not faze Gemma one jot. Helped by the hands of her experienced comrades, Millie and Tianna, she played a full part in getting the trio to gold medal success.
Head coach Nikki Thorne explained: âIt was an amazing feat because Gemma had to learn two new routines in ten days after Shannon was forced to pull out. To perform so well as to actually help her team win their section was real credit to her and the others, against clubs which train together three or four times a week.
âFor Gemma it was a huge leap from Prep B to Grade 4, which is effectively an international-class level.â
Only a week beforehand Gemma and Fiona had clinched first place in the SW Novice Championships at Sherborne, setting the former in good heart for that illustrious appearance in Taunton the following weekend.
During the same Novice event Mark Hansell and Alex Reeves, among a string of King Edmund gymnasts making their bow in a competitive environment, provided a competition highlight by performing a Hawaii Five-O routine, to the enormous enjoyment of judges and crowd.
Below are our results from both the South West Championships and SW Novice events:
SW Championships, Taunton; Grade 1 Womenâs Groups: Leanne Challis, Hannah Pallot, Suzie Holt, 2nd
Grade 2 Menâs Pairs (out of age): Josh Smith, Harry Hole, 1st
Grade 2 Womenâs Groups: Maisie Dando, Jade Gibbs, Rhian Streeter, 1st; Nadia Cocking, Emma Cornick, Molly Britton, 3rd
Grade 2 Womenâs Groups (out of age): Georgia Loxham-Flynn, Abigail Hipkiss, Isobel Davey, 1st
Grade 3 Womenâs Groups: Elisha Muscat, Olivia Britton, Anais Walker, 1st
Grade 4 Womenâs Pairs: Mollie Grehan, Courtney Hodge, 1st
Grade 4 Womenâs Groups: Millie Theobald, Gemma Ponting, Tianna McClurg, 1st
11-16 Womenâs Pairs: Rosie Hatherell, Jessica Howard, 1st; Katie Alner, Maisey Hanham, 2nd
11-16 Menâs Pairs: Tyler Kelly, Simon Allison, 2nd
11-16 Womenâs Groups: Carmen Benham, Bethany Foster, Courtney Hodge, 1st; Morgan Caldecoat, Chelsea Bennett, Lily Foster, 2nd; Gina Tozer, Bethany Nolder, Emily Brown, 6th
11-16 Menâs Group: Ryan Bennett, Marcus Flint, Josh Smith, Robert Bates, 2nd
Junior Womenâs Pairs: Shanie-Redd Thorne, Danielle Jones, 1st
Junior Menâs Pairs: Christopher Child, Jake Underdown, 1st
Junior Womenâs Groups: Mollie Grehan, Lauren Gardiner, Brieanne Foster, 3rd
SW Novice Championships, Sherborne; Prep A Womenâs Pairs: Poppy Smith, Katie Sillick, 1st; Katie Newman, Megan Streeter, 2nd; Courtney Reeves, Lucy Foster, 4th; Emily Powner, Poppy Murphy, 6th
Prep A Mixed Pairs: James Offer, Kristen Owen, 1st
Prep A Menâs Pairs: Mark Hansell, Alex Reeves, 1st
Grade 1 Menâs Pairs (out of age): Ryan Hansell, Louis Pember, 1st
Prep B Womenâs Pairs: Gemma Ponting, Fiona Cornick, 1st; Scarlett Strachen-Wills, Amber Thrush, 2nd; Hollie Burrows, Paige Weeks, 6th; Rachel Holehouse, Ellise King, 11th; Rowan Atfield, Ellie Maggs, 21st
Prep B Mixed Pairs: Daniel Liddiatt, Sophie Noble, 4th
Prep B Menâs Pairs: Finley Austen, Joel Compton, 3rd; Reuben Forrester, Joe Kennedy, 4th
Novice Trios: Scarlett Strachen-Wills, Rebecca Adams, Ellie Maggs, 1st; Zoe Norcombe, Katie Newman, Sophie Noble, 4th; Millie Cox, Carolyn Phillips, Millie Punton, 8th
Congrats To Coach (And Proud Mum!) Kellie . . .
EVERYONE at the club would like to extend their best wishes and congratulations to Kellie and her partner Warby on the arrival of baby River.
Will the bouncing boy be a bouncing future world champion with King Eddies? With coach Kellie to hand 24/7, anything is possible!
No Rain In Spain For King Eddies' Super Seven
A SELECT band of King Eddies gymnasts excelled at a highly successful and enjoyable Spanish international championships.
Shanie-Redd Thorne and Danielle Jones, and our world champions Jake Underdown and Chris Child, triumphed in the junior womenâs and menâs pairings respectively, while nine-year-old Tianna McClurg teamed up with Shannon McClurg and Millie Theobald to claim gold in the 11-16 trio category.
The event took place in Pontevedra, bordering Portugal, and head coach Nikki Thorne said: âIt was a fantastic few days. Our gymnasts competed really well and were made to feel extremely welcome by the locals.
âTianna is only just nine but she was up at 6âoâclock in the morning to prepare herself and had to wait until much later in the day to compete. But she and the others conducted themselves really well in immense heat and the club can be proud of them all.â
Nikki smiled: âI think our kids felt like stars because they had these big crowds wanting autographs and photos of them and the atmosphere in the arena was amazing, with drums and bands booming between the performances.
âWe met some local gymnast in a park on the Saturday and chatted to the parents while they played in water fountains. It was a very memorable experience.â
Dignitaries Take Delight at Our Gym Display
A LARGE contingent of our performers of all ages turned out in force to show off their skills at the first such gym display King Eddies has staged at Yate Leisure Centre in two years.
Local MP Steve Webb was there to watch with his family while representatives from the Ridings Federation, and Mayor of Yate Cllr Martin Monk, were also in attendance.
More than 600 spectators at each of two shows performed by our gymnasts witnessed the spectacles, which included displays by the exciting Yate Parkour team.
Nikki said: âIt was a great opportunity for parents and mentors to see how far their children have progressed, and how the step-by-step policies we deploy in their development work in practice.
âMany of us went to the White Lion across the road afterwards for a disco and it was nice of them to allow us a room at the back free of charge. It was a pleasant end to a great day.â
Watch Out! Devon cream to meet cream of Yate . . .
WATCH out Crealy Adventure Park in Devon â weâre coming to you en masse! King Eddies are organising a fun day out for gymnast of all ages and their friends and families on Tuesday, July 26.
Cost for the trip is ÂŁ25 per person which includes coach and entrance fee. We will be departing the Sports Shed at around 8am and should be back by about 7pm.
Bookings are being taken on a first-come, first-served basis so get yourselves down to the Shed to claim your seat/seats, or give us a tinkle on the usual number, 01454 320662.
MAY 2011 - LATE 2010
Gym Display Lights Up Grey Day At Shireway
By Simon Parkinson
THE skies may have been grey but they were ablaze with colour the moment our gymnasts took to the âstageâ at Shireway Community Centre for the latest fun day!
The event has been an annual one for many years now but in more recent times it has grown to become one of King Eddyâs biggest and best fund-raisers, as the showpiece displays have been flanked by stalls and sideshows thanks to the efforts of ever-supportive parents and staff.
For a while it looked as though the rain would force everybody indoors but mercifully it relented enough to enable an array of our competition squad members to demonstrate their considerable talents on the mats outside, flanked by a large and appreciative audience enjoying a beer or two to help stem the effects of the spring chill!
There was an extra obstacle for our gymnasts to overcome too â a strong and persistent breeze testing strength, balance and co-ordination levels to the max.
Club helper and coach Kirsty Underdown said: âOnce the rain cleared up we managed to get the mats out in the garden and it was nice to see new parents mingling with those who had been with the club a while.â
Youngsters Set For Leisure Centre Spectacular
KING Edmundâs fledgling gymnasts are to perform two shows at Yate Leisure Centre on Saturday, June 18.
The displays, which take place at 2.15pm and (repeated) at 4.30pm that day, will be given by members of our gym fun and recreational classes, as well as our competition performers.
Tickets, only available from the Sports Shed (01454 320662) are priced at ÂŁ5 for adults and ÂŁ2.50 for children for what should prove spectacular event.
The 2010 Yateâs Got Talent winners The Sports Shed Stars and the amazing Yate Parkour will also be performing.
Coach Kirsty Underdown said: âMy own son Jake started out in the gym fun class for reception and infant school-aged children and went on to become a world champion.
âItâs a chance for people to see the next generation of gymnasts coming through and showing what they are capable of achieving over the next few years of their development with us.â
Six-Year-Old Poppy Performs First-Time Wonders
YOUNG Poppy Murphy summed up beautifully what it means to be a King Edmund starlet enjoying a first taste of competitive action!
Our exuberant six-year-old fledgling was one of the youngest performers to take part in the South West Novice competition at Sherborne in Dorset.
There were, quite understandably, a few butterflies abounding among the Murphy family, not least Poppy herself, as she prepared to boldly step out with her partner Gemma Ponting for Prep A womenâs pairs competition.
But she overcame her nerves brilliantly to help the duo to a creditable eighth overall in the class.
There was joy too for Scarlet Strachen-Wills and Amber Thrush as they finished first in the Prep B section with a total of 26.05 to post the highest score of the entire event.
Head coach Nikki Thorne said of another successful outing for the club: âOur coaches were buzzing with what was achieved because most of our competitors were aged only six and seven. For many this was their first experience of proper competition.
âThe King Edmund coaches who were with them can also be proud of their efforts and it shows the future of the club is in safe hands.
âAnd the parents did everything asked of them which helped ensure all our gymnasts looked polished and professional.â
Of Poppy, Nikki said: âShe was extremely nervous, bless her, but she still went out and performed with a big smile on her face for the whole routine and she looked stunning.
âHer mum Sam was quite overcome with it all and extremely proud, which is what itâs all about.â
Our results at the SW Novice were:
Prep A Womenâs Pairs: Rebecca Adams, Ellie Maggs 1st; Katie Newman, Sarah Friis 2nd; Courtney Reeves, Katie Sillick 4th; Gemma Ponting, Poppy Murphy 8th
Prep B Menâs Pairs: Thomas Warburton, Louis Pember 2nd
Novice Trio: Courtney Reeves, Gemma Ponting, Fiona Cornick 1st; Rebecca Adams, Scarlet-Strachen-Wills, Ellie Maggs 2nd; Leigh-Ann Challis, Hannah Pallot, Holly Stone 4th; Georgia Hennessy, Millie Cox, Millie Punton 12th
Prep B Womenâs Pairs: Scarlet Strachen-Wills, Amber Thrush 1st; Rachel Child, Anna Campbell 2nd; Poppy Smith, Georgia Hutchinson 3rd; Amy Price, Paige Weeks 9th; Rachel Holehouse, Ellise King 17th
Meanwhile, our delighted coach Buff had every reason to be chuffed with the performances of her fast-emerging gymnasts at the Regional Sports Acro finals in Southampton.
Leigh-Ann Challis and Hannah Pallot came third as a novice trio while Rachel Child and Anna Campbell finished up an admirable fourth in the Prep B womenâs pairs, despite having the third highest score.
Buff chirped: âIt was a fantastic achievement and one made all the more special as it was our gymnastsâ last competition in their respective partnerships. It was a nice way to finish.
âThey have progressed to the next stage up while I am looking forward to working with the next generation of gymnasts in my group.â
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