It was a long day in Dublin yesterday, 2 competitions over 11 hours saw many new national All Around champions crowned. The morning session saw the Level 7 and 8 age levels compete with the afternoon displaying the Level 9 and 10’s and also the FIG Senior, Junior and Minors. Levels 7 – 10 showed many promising gymnasts who someday hope to compete at FIG level and represent Ireland internationally. Many of the level 10’s showed some great potential for entering full FIG next year.There was plenty of talent on show who we hope to see coming up the ranks in the next few years and raising the bar for Gymnastics Ireland. The day was also a chance for some gymnasts to complete their last trial for the upcoming Celtic Cup competition taking place in Dublin City University in April.
The FIG Minor competition was dominated by Salto’s Casey Jo Bell in her stunning black and red leotard. All eyes were on Casey as she performed easily the most difficult bars and beam routines of the day. The 11 year old had a start value of 4.8 on bars and 4.7 on beam as well as 4.4 on floor. Never before have a heard a usually chatty Irish gymnastics audience be so silent that we could have heard a pin drop in the gym. Casey stunned the audience and fellow competitors with her double tuck dismount on beam and how she transitioned so smoothly from high bar to low and back. A stunning performance from the young girl who trains 24 hours a week in Northern Ireland. Emmiline Anghileri who trains in Tolworth Gymnastics Club in the UK (but competes for Renmore from Galway) placed second, there was 4.270 in the difference between the girls. Excel’s Niamh Rogers with 40.100 who was a power house on floor, competing a lovely double tuck. Keep an eye out for Casey Jo Bell and Emmiline Anghileri, in particular, over the next few years. Let’s hope they don’t peak too early. Remember the names.
Four gymnasts competed in the FIG Junior competition. The competition was won by Excel’s Ciara Melia with her club mate Hayleigh Bradley and Nadia’s Denise Moloney in 3rd place.
Eight girls competed in the FIG Senior competition, these are the top girls in Ireland. We saw some beautiful floor work, double twists, full twists with some fantastic choreography. World Championships participant Sophie McCoo lead the field of gymnasts vying for the title of National All Around champion, she claimed the crown with a score of 41.750, pipping Excel’s Emma Lunn to the post by just 1.43. Beth Gillmor of Old Bawn placed third. Beth vaulted a lovely tucked tsuk and performed a nice double twist on floor. Sophie McCoo’s floor was energetic and confident. Most girls struggled on beam, didn’t appear too confident, plenty of falls and wobbles but that can be worked on, even so, some impressive moves. You can see Emma Lunn and Sophie McCoo next competing for Ireland at the Cottbus Cup in Germany this month.
Every year, an award is presented for the highest bar score of the day, in an effort to encourage Irish gymnasts to up their game on uneven bars, an apparatus in which the country as a whole is weak on. FIG Minor Champion Casey Jo Bell (pictured above) took the award home with her score of 10.600, again beating Emmiline Anghileri’s 9.325. The closest of the FIG Seniors to come to Casey Jo’s score was Emma Lunn.
The next time these girls will meet again will be at the FIG Individual Apparatus Championships on May 20th. Videos to follow here. A special mention to our camera woman, you know who you are and we wish that you had been able to compete too