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Written by John Crumlish    Wednesday, 08 June 2016 08:41    PDF Print
Russian-Born Sazonova Realizes Olympic Dream In Iceland
(4 votes, average 5.00 out of 5)

After a lengthy career competing in and for her native Russia, Irina Sazonova of Iceland has reached the highest destination of her gymnastics journey — a berth to this summer’s Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.

Sazonova, who began competing for Iceland last year, earned her spot for the Rio Games through her performance at the Olympic test event in Rio in April, which served as the second and final qualifying meet for the Games. She will be the first female artistic gymnast to represent Iceland in Olympic competition.

Born September 2, 1991, in Vologda, Sazonova competed steadily for her native country earlier this decade. She placed 12th all-around at the 2010 Russian Cup, 13th all-around at the 2011 Russian Championships and 14th all-around at the 2012 Russian Championships. Among Sazonova’s international credentials for Russia, she placed sixth on floor exercise at the 2010 DTB Cup in Stuttgart; and seventh all-around, sixth on uneven bars and third with the Russian team at the 2011 University Games in Shenzhen.

Sazonova’s career has flourished since she relocated to Iceland and subsequently received Icelandic citizenship. She placed fourth all-around (50.950), first on uneven bars and third on floor exercise at the Northern European Championships in Limerick in September 2015; and 98th all-around in qualifications (50.398) at the World Championships in Glasgow in October. This spring she finished 39th all-around (52.931) at the Olympic test event, and 19th all-around in qualifications (52.057) at the European Championships in Bern.

In this IG Online interview, Sazonova details her journey from Russia to Rio, via her adoptive country of Iceland.

IG: When did you realize you qualified for Rio, and what emotions were you feeling at that moment?

IS: I knew about my advancement to the Olympic Games right after the performances at the test event, when they showed the final results. Even now I cannot believe that I will compete on the Olympic podium and compete with the best gymnasts in the world. This was my dream since childhood.

IG: Between Bern and Rio, what will be the focus of your training?

IS: Bern was one more test of my possibilities. In general I am pleased with my performances, but there is still work to do, to finish my program and bring it up to the necessary level for the Games. This month I will go to a training camp in Stuttgart, where I can concentrate only on training and make my program more difficult. It will be, in its own way, a dress rehearsal before the Olympic Games!

IG: How, when and why did you decide to compete for Iceland?

IS: I began my career in Vologda, at the Children’s/Youth Specialized Sport School of Olympic Reserve No. 1, with coach Olga Kovalyova. Then, when I was 15, I left for Saint Petersburg, in order to continue my training there at the School of Olympic Reserve No. 1. There, spouses Svetlana Kolomenskaya and Yury Kolomensky coached me. In Iceland I am coached by my compatriot Vladimir Antonov.

My coach from Saint Petersburg, Svetlana Kolomenskaya, was working in Iceland, and took me there with her. I simply wanted to try something new. Soon she left to return home, and I decided to remain. I liked this country so much that I did not want to leave. Iceland became my home. At first I competed only for the club “Armann,” but having received citizenship on August 13, 2015, there was for me the possibility of representing the country on the big podium.

IG: Your life in Iceland must be quite different from your life in Russia. How are you doing with the transition, in terms of lifestyle, culture and language?

IS: I cannot compare how I lived in Russia with how I live now. Everything is different. I was a child, and here I have plunged into adult life. In Iceland I not only continued my sports career, but I also began my coaching activities, and for the first time began to work as a coach, precisely in Iceland. The Icelandic language is hard, but I think that soon I can grasp it.

IG: To what do you attribute your betterment as a gymnast since you moved to Iceland?

IS: I’m better probably because I became more adult, and of course have gained experience. Now I can allocate my time adequately so that everything I do goes to my advantage.

IG: What are your post-Rio plans?

IS: Rio will be my first Olympic Games, but I hope not my last. I am going to continue training and prepare for the next Games in 2020.

Read “Icelandic Warm-up,” a feature on IG’s visit to gym clubs in Iceland, in the November 2012 issue of International Gymnast magazine. To order back issues or subscribe, click here.

Written by Amanda Turner    Saturday, 09 April 2016 15:41    PDF Print
Fragapane, Whitlock Win British Championships
(3 votes, average 5.00 out of 5)

Claudia Fragapane (Bristol Hawks) and Max Whitlock (South Essex) won the senior all-around titles at the British Gymnastics Championships, held Saturday in Liverpool.

Claudia Fragapane (Bristol Hawks) and Max Whitlock (South Essex) won the senior all-around titles at the British Gymnastics Championships, held Saturday in Liverpool.

Fragapane, the 2014 Commonwealth Games champion, won her first British national title over 2012 champion Rebecca Tunney (City of Liverpool) and Ellie Downie (Notts Gymnastics).

"It feels absolutely amazing!" said Fragapane, who was second all-around in 2015. "I've never been all-around champion and I got a personal best (58.100) so I'm really pleased."

Fragapane took her top mark on vault (14.800) in the last rotation for a double-twisting Yurchenko, but was most impressive for her acrobatics on balance beam (standing Arabian; ff, layout/pike full; standing tucked full; ff, ff, double pike; 14.750) and floor exercise (full-twisting double layout; piked Arabian double front; triple twist; double layout to wolf jump; 14.700).

"I was nervous to start," she said. "My bars was a little shaky and I had to fight, but I dismounted well so I was happy. Beam was also a bit nerve-wracking but I landed my twists so was solid, floor I absolutely loved, the crowd were amazing and then I landed vault well so really happy overall. To be British champion is unbelievable really I can't thank the crowd and all my supporters enough. This gives me a huge amount of confidence and I can't wait for my next competition now."

Downie fell off bars in the first rotation but managed the bronze behind Tunney. Defending champion Amy Tinkler fell off beam twice in the last rotation to finish fourth.

Downie's elder sister Becky Downie had the top scores on uneven bars (15.100) and balance beam (14.850).

The British men's competition showed off the program's remarkable depth among its senior and youth teams. Several foreign competitors competed as guests, including former British team member Reiss Beckford, now representing Jamaica, and Australian pommel horse world medalist Prashanth Sellathurai.

Whitlock, the 2013 and 2014 champion, recaptured the all-around title with a massive 92.700. He lived up to his nickname of "Mighty Max" with top marks of 16.050 on floor exercise (6.8 D) and 16.250 on pommel horse (7.2 D). He took his lowest score, 14.900, on vault, where he stepped off the mat on a crooked triple-twisting Yurchenko.

Whitlock, whose all-around total was also a personal best, said he was thrilled with his performance.

Junior women's champion Maisie Methuen (Phoenix Gymnastics, Wales)

"I'm really really happy – preparation went well, the build-up was perfect and that's my personal best, and I'm very happy to do it at the British," he said. "I felt good throughout the competition, tried not to get ahead of myself just focussing on the next piece, step by step and I'm happy to have done it on all six pieces on the right day. I'm very proud of today, I've never even hit that score in training and so to do it at such an important championships and win the gold it's brilliant."

Defending champion Dan Purvis (Southport YMCA) claimed silver over Nile Wilson (Leeds Gymnastics Club), 89.500-87.150.

2012 Olympian Sam Oldham (Loughborough) and James Hall (Pegasus Gymnastics), who tied for the all-around bronze last year, tied yet again this year for fourth all-around (86.600). Courtney Tulloch (Pegasus Gymnastics) placed sixth, scoring a massive 16.050 on still rings.

Two-time Olympian Louis Smith competed two events, scoring 15.800 on pommel horse (6.9 D).

During Friday's junior competition, 14-year-old Maisie Methuen (Phoenix Gymnastics Club) won the women's title, scoring 54.600. Taeja James (City of Birmingham) won the all-around silver (53.850), one point over Ellesse Oates (Park Wrekin College).

"It feels amazing," said Methuen, from Pontypool, Wales. "I never expected to become British champion. I'm really excited for the year ahead (with Junior European Championships coming up) this competition has really given me a massive confidence boost and the experience of this arena will definitely help me in the future."

Joe Fraser (City of Birmingham) grabbed the Under-18 junior men's title over 2014 Youth Olympic Games champion Giarnni Regini-Moran (Europa Gym Centre), 83.450-82.750. Hamish Carter brought another medal for Birmingham with the bronze (81.000)

"I've put so much into my training with my coach, and so to come away with three golds and two silvers, it's literally just made it all worth it," Fraser said.

Jamie Lewis (Woking) won the Under-16 men's title over Birmingham's Donell Osbourne and Huntingdon's Jake Jarman.

"I was sick two weeks before the comp, and it set me back a lot so I am very surprised I've come out on top," Lewis said. "The last two pieces were floor and pommel and I knew that I had to nail them and my floor my scores up a lot."

Competition concludes Sunday with the senior apparatus finals for women and the Masters apparatus finals for men.

External Link: British Gymnastics

2016 British Gymnastics Championships
April 8-9, Liverpool, England

Senior Women's All-AroundVTUBBBFXTotal
1.Claudia FragapaneBristol Hawks Gym Club5.814.8005.913.8506.414.7506.414.70058.100
2.Rebecca TunneyCity of Liverpool5.814.4006.414.4505.413.5505.813.95056.350
3.Ellie DownieNotts Gymnastics5.814.8005.612.3505.814.5505.613.55055.250
4.Amy TinklerSouth Durham5.814.9505.813.7505.311.6506.214.35054.700
5.Ruby HarroldThe Academy5.814.7006.513.0505.513.8004.812.80054.350
6.Kelly SimmDynamo5.614.3505.113.0505.113.3005.113.15053.850
7.Georgia-Mae FentonEast London Gym Club 5.013.6005.513.1005.212.6505.013.15052.500
8.Phoebe TurnerThe Academy4.413.5005.112.5005.712.7005.413.65052.350
9.Abigail SolariThe Academy4.813.7005.112.0504.411.4005.413.50050.650
10.April MaslenThe Academy5.013.7504.011.7505.012.5504.512.30050.350
11.Shannon ArcherCity of Glasgow5.013.6002.410.7504.812.7504.912.75049.850
12.Chelsea CourtCity of Bristol Gymnastics5.013.5004.511.8005.012.0004.612.55049.850
13.Rebecca MoorePhoenix Gymnastics Club5.013.6504.911.7504.510.5005.413.15049.050
14.Hana DaviesLlanelli Gymnastics Club4.413.3505.012.9003.79.3004.812.95048.500
15.Polina PoliakovaPipers Vale Gymnastics4.212.9004.111.4504.810.8005.013.00048.150
16.Lottie SmithHuntingdon Olympic4.012.6003.511.1504.011.7504.712.20047.700
17.Sofia RamzanDGC2k4.212.6504.111.7004.711.4004.811.75047.500
18.Cara KennedyCity of Glasgow4.613.2003.410.1003.99.5504.612.40045.250
19.India WellerAbingdon Gymnastics 4.212.6502.28.2504.511.5504.310.70043.150
20.Jessica CoombsNotts Gymnastics5.014.0504.611.2004.412.50037.750
21.Becky DownieNotts Gymnastics6.415.1006.214.80029.900
22.Georgina ClementsPark Wrekin College4.912.8505.111.35024.200
23.Carrie WalkerAbingdon Gymnastics3.08.7004.911.65020.350
24.Gabby JuppSapphire6.114.20014.200

Senior Men's All-AroundFXPHSRVTPBHBTotal
1.Max WhitlockSouth Essex Gymnastics6.816.0507.216.2506.015.0006.014.9006.415.0506.715.45092.700
2.Daniel PurvisSouthport YMCA6.515.2006.014.4006.115.0005.614.7506.715.4505.914.70089.500
3.Nile WilsonLeeds Gymnastics Club5.413.2505.814.5006.415.2005.614.5006.615.1506.414.55087.150
4.James HallPegasus Gym Club6.414.4006.414.8505.814.0505.614.4506.014.2506.214.60086.600
4.Sam OldhamLoughborough Students6.215.1506.213.4506.014.6005.614.4506.114.1006.414.85086.600
6.Courtney TullochPegasus Gym Club6.113.9505.812.5506.916.0505.614.8006.415.0004.912.90085.250
7.Dominick CunninghamCity of Birmingham6.415.0005.612.0005.313.5005.614.8006.114.8505.814.35084.500
*HCReiss BeckfordSouth Essex Gymnastics5.914.6505.313.4005.714.5005.013.9505.914.9005.512.90084.300
8.Jay ThompsonSouth Essex Gymnastics5.614.4505.614.3005.413.7505.214.3005.612.6505.713.85083.300
*HCJack NeillTolworth Gym Club5.614.5505.213.5004.412.8005.214.6004.012.4503.812.05079.950
9.Robert PayneLoughborough Students4.713.4005.013.7504.213.0004.413.4504.312.3504.012.10078.050
10.William TroodLoughborough Students5.113.1004.712.6004.413.1504.412.9505.113.1504.513.00077.950
11.Clark GouldLoughborough Students5.513.7505.113.1004.512.3004.413.3004.512.2504.512.10076.800
12.Adam SteelePipers Vale Gymnastics5.513.2005.213.7003.611.1005.214.3004.713.0505.011.10076.450
13.Jaron MorganLoughborough Students4.112.8504.211.3504.012.3004.413.2504.211.7504.511.20072.700
14.Ross MoreyLoughborough Students3.912.4004.812.8002.211.1003.612.4003.612.9003.510.50072.100
15.George HarrowPipers Vale Gymnastics5.713.1004.610.7503.811.8504.413.3504.911.3003.99.50069.850
16.Elliott CooperCity of Manchester5.712.7506.010.4005.913.4004.413.6504.810.0004.19.05069.250
17.Robert HunterCity of Bristol Gymnastics4.411.1504.28.1003.810.7004.413.6503.812.7503.79.20065.550
18.Kristian ThomasEarls Gymnastics Club6.214.7505.514.3506.015.3506.515.20059.650
19.Brinn BevanSouth Essex Gymnastics6.414.4505.613.7006.415.3005.413.35056.800
20.Frank BainesSouthport YMCA6.214.2005.813.8506.014.90042.950
*HCChristopher O'ConnorLoughborough Students4.713.3504.313.2504.112.50039.100
21.Nathan ComberWorcestershire Gymnastics5.813.4002.38.7005.213.90036.000
22.Ashley WatsonLeeds Gymnastics Club6.715.3506.514.85030.200
23.Louis Smith, MBEHuntingdon Olympic6.915.8005.211.90027.700
24.Harry CarterLoughborough Students5.813.8005.613.20027.000
25.Robert BlackmanLoughborough Students5.012.7004.011.75024.450
26.Harry WallBaskerville 4.212.7005.110.55023.250
27.Nathaniel LeneyLoughborough Students4.712.8504.010.30023.150
28.Josh GallagherSwansea Gymnastics 4.611.9504.210.05022.000
*HCPrashanth SellathuraiMilton Keynes Gym6.615.20015.200
29.Jac DaviesSwansea Gymnastics6.613.90013.900
30.Dan KeatingsHuntingdon Olympic6.313.85013.850
31.Gabriel HannahLoughborough Students3.911.00011.000
32.Miki ChuWoking Gymnastics Club5.410.80010.800

Junior Women's All-AroundVTUBBBFXTotal
1.Maisie MethuenPhoenix Gymnastics Club5.014.0505.213.3505.113.4505.113.75054.600
2.Taeja JamesCity of Birmingham5.013.9505.113.6505.512.7505.013.50053.850
3.Ellesse OatesPark Wrekin College5.013.2504.913.1505.413.4004.913.05052.850
4.Alice KinsellaPark Wrekin College5.014.0505.312.2005.412.7505.612.70051.700
5.Zoe SimmonsThe Academy5.013.6004.312.4504.912.0005.213.10051.150
6.Megan SplainSapphire4.413.3003.111.7004.813.0504.712.65050.700
7.Lucy StanhopeCity of Liverpool 5.014.0004.812.7004.511.2504.912.30050.250
8.Amelia KnightThe Academy4.012.9504.312.4004.412.2504.712.25049.850
9.Megan ParkerCity of Birmingham4.413.3005.112.7004.910.9004.912.90049.800
10.Chiara BunceHeathrow Gym Club4.412.9004.412.6004.911.4504.512.25049.200
11.Sarah MckenzieDGC2k4.012.7003.911.4504.512.4004.912.50049.050
12.Isla WarrPark Wrekin College4.413.3004.212.2504.710.4004.412.45048.400
13.Olivia WilliamsCity of Liverpool 4.012.8504.912.3504.410.6004.912.45048.250
14.India SaleHeathrow Gym Club4.012.4503.811.4004.612.4004.411.90048.150
15.Alyieana RahimSapphire4.011.4503.311.2004.312.1504.412.40047.200
16.Amelia MontagueTolworth Gym Club4.211.9503.39.8005.012.4004.312.75046.900
17.Christine TseWyre Forest 3.812.4002.010.3504.611.6503.812.35046.750
18.Ellie RussellWest Lothian Artistic4.212.6003.510.7504.811.0504.712.05046.450
19.Erika MagpantayMarriotts Gym Club4.212.7003.410.0004.311.1504.312.20046.050
19.Megan MorrisonCity of Glasgow4.212.8002.69.7504.111.4004.412.10046.050
21.Lana ChiltonCity of Newcastle Gym4.012.9502.68.0004.812.1504.812.90046.000
22.Dena KirkSouth Durham4.212.6503.010.0504.510.9004.312.25045.850
23.Eleanor GreenTameside4.012.8002.511.1504.510.2004.311.50045.650
24.Abigail MorrisCity of Manchester4.012.3003.710.9503.310.1504.612.10045.500
25.Megan BridgeGymmagic5.013.7503.69.8504.910.5004.510.65044.750
26.Leah RockettSouth Durham4.212.3002.67.9504.910.6004.311.95042.800
27.Nemiah MunirSapphire4.212.3001.69.4504.310.1504.210.15042.050
28.Daisy GambleBury Gymnastics Club 4.212.7502.78.6003.89.1004.011.10041.550
29.Phoebe NichollsPark Wrekin College4.012.4004.510.1504.412.55035.100
30.Sophie ScottLeatherhead & Dorking5.014.3004.213.15027.450
31.Rosa Holm-HuxleyDGC2k3.411.2004.711.15022.350
32.Alissia BarlowCity of Birmingham3.812.60012.600

Junior Men's All-Around (U18)FXPHSRVTPBHBTotal
1.Joe FraserCity of Birmingham6.014.1506.114.9005.114.0505.614.3005.814.3005.511.75083.450
2.Giarnni Regini-MoranEuropa Gym Centre6.513.0505.313.5004.613.3505.614.9005.814.3504.913.60082.750
3.Hamish CarterCity of Birmingham6.014.3505.513.4005.213.5005.214.5505.313.1505.312.05081.000
4.Joe Cemlyn-JonesFalcons Gym Academy4.912.1504.813.4004.813.6005.213.9505.013.6004.713.25079.950
5.Joshua NathanCity of Birmingham5.314.0006.213.2504.812.4505.212.9004.913.6504.813.15079.400
*HCRhys McClenaghanRathgael Gymnastics 5.213.5506.114.8504.312.1005.214.1005.013.3504.411.15079.100
6.Loukas JonesLeeds Gymnastics Club5.313.9505.113.7504.412.7004.413.2505.011.3005.912.05077.000
7.Kelvin ChamCity of Glasgow5.313.7504.59.9504.411.6005.613.4505.313.5004.111.95074.200
*HCTony DucharsHuntingdon Olympic4.713.7005.110.2503.010.9504.413.0005.113.0004.512.85073.750
8.Byron Day-RogersFalcons Gym Academy4.412.3504.412.3003.611.3503.612.5004.012.3504.512.75073.600
9.James HodgsonCity of Newcastle Gym5.213.2004.511.1503.611.1004.413.5504.012.6004.411.90073.500
10.Ryan OwenFalcons Gym Academy4.812.0504.811.8004.512.2504.413.3504.212.1503.611.50073.100
11.Daniel LeeTolworth Gym Club5.111.9503.710.9003.611.4504.413.1504.712.5004.612.35072.300
12.Timothy McCarthyWoking Gymnastics Club4.812.5004.713.1003.811.6003.612.7004.013.0003.39.20072.100
13.David WeirCity of Glasgow5.312.7004.29.6004.411.7504.413.2505.112.0003.711.70071.000
14.Alfie BainesSouthport YMCA4.512.0003.99.4004.512.8503.612.4004.712.3504.011.95070.950
15.Sam BuddenPortsmouth Gymnastics4.512.1004.112.0503.310.8004.412.9004.012.1003.410.90070.850
16.Thomas SettleLeeds Gymnastics Club4.212.5504.413.0002.310.7003.611.2503.811.3002.49.95068.750
17.Harry AndrewsBristol Hawks Gym Club3.912.0503.811.7502.99.3003.612.4503.512.5002.310.50068.550
18.Veselin KavaldzhievTolworth Gym Club5.310.7503.311.0504.110.4504.413.6003.810.5503.310.60067.000
19.Harry RossCity of Newcastle Gym3.711.9503.69.9503.310.0504.412.8004.311.2003.310.05066.000
20.Owen PrintRugby Gymnastics Club4.910.8004.110.4504.411.1504.812.6504.19.7503.19.85064.650
21.Joshua CooperForest of Dean Gymnastics4.411.3003.97.9002.58.7003.612.3004.111.8503.011.15063.200
22.Harry CaulwellCity of Birmingham5.413.5505.811.1005.613.2504.813.3504.29.20060.450
23.Isaac VangoGarstang4.212.4003.410.5002.49.6003.612.7003.812.15057.350
24.Samuel JackmanBulmershe Gym Club 4.111.9502.57.4502.64.4003.612.7004.110.8002.810.00057.300
*HCEwan McateerCity of Lisburn Salto4.913.4005.614.4004.112.85040.650
25.Tom NicolaouEuropa Gym Centre5.413.1504.613.0004.412.75038.900
26.Benjamin EyreHuntingdon Olympic3.711.5003.011.1004.012.70035.300

Junior Men's All-Around (U16)FXPHSRVTPBHBTotal
1.Jamie LewisWoking Gymnastics Club5.514.5505.513.7005.013.2505.214.2505.312.9505.012.95081.650
2.Donell OsbourneCity of Birmingham5.213.9505.013.3004.312.8005.214.3004.913.7504.713.35081.450
3.Jake JarmanHuntingdon Olympic4.713.1004.612.4003.411.3004.412.9504.512.3504.513.15075.250
4.Lorenzo CarrozzoWoking Gymnastics Club4.913.0504.411.9004.412.1004.413.1504.012.8003.411.40074.400
5.Dominic BigsbyPipers Vale Gymnastics5.313.9502.811.8502.010.2004.413.5503.812.6003.412.00074.150
6.Adam TobinFalcons Gym Academy5.114.0004.011.0503.511.7004.413.1504.712.4504.310.95073.300
7.Jack ChamberlainBury Gymnastics Club5.214.1503.711.4503.910.8004.413.1004.611.3504.812.25073.100
7.Louis SidebottomLeeds Gymnastics Club4.912.5504.211.8003.512.0504.413.3003.812.7002.510.70073.100
9.Joshua LincolnBury Gymnastics Club5.112.7004.211.1504.412.2004.413.4004.311.1004.011.65072.200
10.Josh CookBarry YMCA Gym Club5.013.4003.311.2002.510.0004.413.3503.812.4003.611.60071.950
11.Bradley NuttallCity of Manchester4.712.3505.810.5003.712.2004.412.1504.511.1004.412.55070.850
12.Jack HelpsPortsmouth Gymnastics4.312.7504.411.8502.110.5503.612.2503.712.2002.310.45070.050
12.Cameron SindenFromeside Gymnastics4.813.0503.911.9502.310.0004.412.8003.512.6002.79.65070.050
14.Douglas TurnbullSouth Essex Gymnastics4.913.9504.29.7004.111.9003.011.8504.411.4004.410.65069.450
15.Matthew BoardmanNotts Gymnastics Academy5.213.6003.110.1002.69.9004.413.2004.012.2003.49.35068.350
16.Jake WatsonCity of Birmingham4.012.4504.511.3503.510.3004.412.6503.610.6002.510.75068.100
17.Alexander WeeksBaskerville 4.311.9503.811.0502.99.1004.413.0504.212.0503.010.75067.950
18.Samuel BowdenBury Gymnastics Club3.811.4505.013.0002.810.8503.611.8003.811.8502.68.85067.800
19.Pavel KarnejenkoCity of Glasgow5.012.3004.712.6504.412.6005.214.2001.44.0004.311.70067.450
20.Emile BarberSwansea Gymnastics4.912.6003.711.0501.89.7503.612.3003.910.6503.111.00067.350
21.Cameron ListerPipers Vale Gymnastics4.411.8003.49.8001.910.4503.612.2503.512.1503.19.75066.200
22.Adam LoganCity of Glasgow4.112.6503.210.6502.48.7003.612.0003.611.9002.29.80065.700
23.Thomas JonesRugby Gymnastics Club4.813.3503.69.2503.48.3004.413.3004.110.2503.111.00065.450
24.Archie BakerHawth Gymnastics Club3.711.4502.88.9502.410.8003.612.3003.411.1003.010.30064.900
25.Matthew McClymontTolworth Gym Club3.910.8004.110.6502.99.9003.612.3003.310.0002.810.75064.400
26.Calum WalklettSwallows of Helston Gym4.311.9004.710.8002.08.9003.611.9003.510.8002.29.65063.950
27.Dex TrivettBarry YMCA Gym Club4.211.4503.08.4502.610.0003.612.8003.112.2002.88.95063.850
28.Harri MorganBarry YMCA Gym Club4.111.7503.111.2001.89.9002.810.9503.311.0502.38.10062.950
29.Liam TannerBarry YMCA Gym Club3.811.5003.98.8502.69.7003.011.8003.411.2002.88.50061.550
30.Michael OneillHeathrow Gym Club4.013.0003.110.2001.810.5002.811.8503.111.4501.74.50061.500
31.Tyla-Jae CurtisNotts Gymnastics Academy4.112.0004.210.9002.59.6502.810.4003.59.9503.28.30061.200
32.Jake UnsworthBury Gymnastics Club4.410.7002.410.7504.813.7003.811.6502.310.30057.100
33.Barney GilbertManchester South Gym3.712.0003.010.6502.26.0503.011.8503.810.7502.23.90055.200
34.Louis BrunnenPortsmouth Gymnastics4.613.0502.99.1002.811.2504.413.0502.46.75053.200
35.Mitchell HenshawHinckley Gymnastics Club4.012.2501.98.3503.011.6002.48.9001.810.45051.550
36.Hayden SkinnerSouth Essex Gymnastics5.113.9004.512.3004.413.1003.69.50048.800
37.Isaac PollardLeeds Gymnastics Club4.112.6002.610.8003.612.7502.210.90047.050
38.Euan CoxPegasus Gym Club4.29.6503.56.1005.212.7004.410.80039.250
39.Patrick MurphyHuntingdon Olympic4.813.0503.411.9504.313.45038.450
40.Patrick SmithHawth Gymnastics Club2.99.8502.010.6002.811.00031.450
41.Harry HarrodHawth Gymnastics Club4.212.7002.99.9002.34.55027.150
42.Thomas MorleyNotts Gymnastics Academy5.112.5003.612.25024.750

* Exhibition competitor

International Gymnast magazine's coverage of British gymnasts includes:
"Shooting Star" – Brinn Bevan profile (June 2013)
Becky Downie cover photo (June 2014)
"A Sorority of Success" – Ellie and Becky Downie interviews (June 2014)
Becky Downie, Max Whitlock, Nile Wilson and Bevan on cover (June 2014)
"Britain's New Bombshell" – Claudia Fragapane interview (December 2014)
"European Brilliance" – Ruby Harrold interview (September 2013)
"Nervous Purvis" – Daniel Purvis profile (November 2012)
"Pure Purvis" – interview (March 2012)
Purvis cover photo (November 2011)
"Mounting His Challenge" – Louis Smith interview (March 2016)
"Divide and Conquer" – Kristian Thomas interview (May 2012)
"Britain's Best" – Amy Tinkler profile (June 2015)
"Branching Out" – Rebecca Tunney profile (May 2014)
"Lord Max" – Whitlock interview (June 2013)

To order back issues, or subscribe to the print and/or digital edition of International Gymnast magazine, click here.

Written by John Crumlish    Thursday, 07 April 2016 12:41    PDF Print
IG Online Interview: Samuel Zakutney (Canada)
(4 votes, average 5.00 out of 5)

Although Canada's Samuel Zakutney, 17, is new to senior international competition, he is eager to take on the important task of Olympic qualification as he prepares for the upcoming Olympic test event in Rio de Janeiro. Pictured: Zakutney with coach Oleksandr Zavadych

Although Canada's Samuel Zakutney is new to senior international competition, he is eager to take on the important task of Olympic qualification as he prepares for the upcoming Olympic test event in Rio de Janeiro.

Zakutney placed sixth all-around at the RD76I International Junior Team Cup in Texas in January, and fifth all-around and first on parallel bars in the senior division at the Elite Canada meet in February. Based on his recent results, including third place on high bar at the Calgary International Cup in March, he was named to the Canadian squad for the test event.

Canada finished 15th at last fall's World Championships in Glasgow, where the top eight teams earned automatic berths to this summer's Olympic Games in Rio. The next eight teams advanced to the test event taking place April 16-18, from which the top four teams will move on to the Games.

Born October 6, 1998, in Saint John, New Brunswick. Zakutney trains at Ottawa Gymnastics Center under coach Oleksandr Zavadych, former coach of the Ukrainian junior men's team. Zakutney, a Franco-Ontarian, is a senior at l'École Secondaire Catholique Franco-Cité in Ottawa. His father, Tim Zakutney, was a member of Canada's bronze medal-winning team at the 2000 World Ultimate Frisbee Championships. Zakutney's younger sisters, Alexandra and Sydney, are also athletic.

Zakutney earned solid results at the junior level earlier in the current Olympic quadrennium.

He placed 15th all-around in the 1997-98 age group at the 2013 International Junior Team Cup in Berlin; 12th all-around at the 2014 Junior Pan American Championships in Aracaju, Brazil; and 11th all-around and third on high bar at the 2015 Japan Junior Invitational in Yokohama.

In domestic competition, Zakutney finished third all-around, first on vault and first on parallel bars at the 2014 Canadian Junior Championships; first all-around, first on floor exercise and first on high bar in the junior division at the 2015 Elite Canada meet; and third all-around and second on high bar at the 2015 Canadian Junior Championships.

Zakutney shares his plans and goals for the test event in this IG Online interview.

Zakutney on parallel bars

IG: You haven't had much time to adjust to major senior competition, so what is your mindset heading into the test event?

SZ: Since this is my first major international senior competition, I'm just hoping to approach it with the most confidence possible. If I trust my training and not worry about scores, I should be cool as a cucumber.

However, there will be seven Canadian gymnasts going, and the final line-up will be made after podium training. Hopefully my self-confidence will also give me the chance to compete.

IG: What exactly do you think Canada will need to do at the test event to earn one of the four spots for the Games?

SZ: If the Canadian team wishes to qualify to the Olympic Games, we need to pull off near-perfect routines. We need to focus on executing our routines to the max.

IG: What do you think makes the composition of this team uniquely strong and cohesive?

SZ: Unfortunately, the Canadian team faced a few injuries which resulted in a couple of our best gymnasts being put out for the rest of this year. However, the rest of the team, including me, has remained determined to not let this year get the better of us. It's through our resilience and our perseverance that I believe we will challenge for one of the top four spots.

IG: What do you feel you can offer to your team at the test event, in terms of your particular strengths and also your sense of team spirit?

SZ: I believe I can offer the team consistency on most of the events, more specifically on floor, p-bars and high bar. Those events are the ones with the highest Difficulty scores and they remain remarkably consistent.

Since I am the only senior national team member from Ottawa, I always make the most of the time together with the team. I will offer as much support and encouragement to all of the teammates from the moment we enter the arena.

International Gymnast magazine's recent coverage of Canadian gymnastics includes:
Jade Chrobok profile (April 2016)
Chrobok and Meixi Semple cover photo inset (March 2016)
"Aiming to Top the Charts" – Maegan Chant interview (October 2013)
"Canadian Beacon" – Ellie Black interview (September 2015)
"Canadian Promise" – Black chat and Robert Watson profile (July/August 2014)
"Canadian Diversity" – Black and Hugh Smith profiles (July/August 2013)
Chat with Christine Peng-Peng Lee (April 2015)
"Sudden Impact" – Victoria Moors interview (January/February 2013)
"Making Tracks" – Scott Morgan profile (December 2013)
Isabela Onyshko profile (July/August 2014)
Megan Roberts profile (April 2015)
Aleeza Yu two-page photo spread (May 2014)

To order back issues, or subscribe to the print and/or digital edition of International Gymnast magazine, click here.

Written by Amanda Turner    Saturday, 02 April 2016 13:01    PDF Print
Five Champions Crowned on First Day of Cottbus Finals
(4 votes, average 4.25 out of 5)

Five gymnasts won titles on the first day of finals as the 40th Tournament of Masters continued Saturday at the Lausitz Arena in Cottbus, Germany. Pictured: Still rings champion Igor Radivilov (Ukraine

Five gymnasts won titles on the first day of finals as the 40th Tournament of Masters continued Saturday at the Lausitz Arena in Cottbus, Germany.

Uzbekistan's Oksana Chusovitina, who made her debut at the Tournament of Masters back in 1989, added yet another Cottbus title with the vault gold. Clad in a lovely purple ombré leotard, she nearly stuck her layout Rudi and took a large hop on an otherwise clean 1 1/2-twisting Tsukahara for a 14.700 average.

China's Wu Jing had better success with her double-twisting Tsukahara and layout Rudi than in qualification, but execution deductions kept her from challenging for gold. Slovenia's Tjaša Kysselef, a mainstain on the World Cup circuit, added another medal with the bronze.

Germany's Sophie Scheder won uneven bars with a spectacular, truly artistic routine. Scheder's strength is her tight, beautiful form accentuated by her long lines (inside-Stalder full, Komova transition, bail, toe-on full, toe-shoot to high; inside Stalder, insider Stalder blind to Jaeger; kip, cast, pirouette, giants to full-twisting double tuck).

Runner-up Zhu Xiaofang had a high-flying routine also worth 6.6 in Difficulty but of a completely different style (Maloney to Pak; Maloneye-half; healy to Ling to Jaeger; full-twisting double) but a low landing on her dismount might have been enough to bump her to second.

In the men's competition, Ukrainian Oleg Vernyayev, the only gymnast to qualify to every event final, won the bronze medal on floor exercise and silver on pommel horse. He fell on his dismount on still rings, where he was the top qualifier.

Brazilian Diego Hypólito topped Slovenia's Rok Klavora on men's floor exercise, in the same finish as last weekend's Doha World Cup Challenge.

Two-time British Olympian Louis Smith rebounded from his mistake in qualification to win the pommel horse final. Daniel Corral tied Slovenia's Sašo Bertoncelj for the bronze despite a fall late in his routine.

Ukrainian Igor Radivilov, the 2013 co-European still rings champion, won rings over Brazilian Henrique Flores and Dennis Goossens.

The best finish for the German men on Saturday two fourth-place finishes for Marcel Nguyen on floor exercise and still rings.

Competition concludes Sunday with the remaining apparatus finals.

External Link: Official Website

40th Tournament of Masters/FIG World Challenge Cup
April 2, 2016, Cottbus, Germany

Women's Vault FinalDENDScoreAverage
1.Oksana Chusovitina6.28.80015.00014.700
2.Wu Jing6.08.3000.114.20014.350
3.Tjaša Kysselef5.38.76614.06613.966
4.Gabriela Janik5.38.93314.23313.949
5.Lisa Top5.38.6660.113.86613.933
6.Antonia Alicke5.28.60013.80013.666
7.Teja Belak5.37.73313.03313.599
8.Liu Jinru6.28.3330.314.2337.116

Uneven Bars FinalDENDScore
1.Sophie Scheder6.48.50014.900
2.Zhu Xiaofang6.48.33314.733
3.Gabriela Janik5.77.56613.266
4.Simona Castro4.98.20013.100
5.Nora Fernández5.37.66612.966
6.Oksana Chusovitina5.17.66612.766
7.Lisa Top5.17.26612.366
8.Sanne Wevers4.46.36610.766

Men's Floor Exercise FinalDENDScore
1.Diego Hypólito6.88.66615.466
2.Rok Klavora6.28.66614.866
3.Oleg Vernyayev6.58.33314.833
4.Tomas Kuzmickas6.67.83314.433
4.Marcel Nguyen6.08.43314.433
6.Dominick Cunningham6.48.1000.114.400
7.Angelo Assumpção6.77.36614.066
8.Pablo Brägger6.66.4330.112.933

Pommel Horse FinalDENDScore
1.Louis Smith7.27.90015.100
2.Oleg Vernyayev6.78.30015.000
3.Sašo Bertoncelj6.18.60014.700
3.Daniel Corral7.07.70014.700
5.Levente Vagner6.28.46614.666
5.Weng Hao7.07.66614.666
7.Wang Bo6.58.00014.500
8.Stian Skjerahaug6.08.30014.300

Still Rings FinalDENDScore
1.Igor Radivilov6.88.70015.500
2.Henrique Flores6.98.46615.366
3.Dennis Goossens6.68.43315.033
4.Marcel Nguyen6.48.60015.000
4.Vinzenz Höck6.68.40015.000
6.Oleg Vernyayev6.67.76614.366
7.Fellipe Arakawa5.88.23314.033
8.Andreas Toba6.57.43313.933
Written by John Crumlish    Thursday, 17 March 2016 13:03    PDF Print
Lee Looking Ahead After Latest Surgery
(5 votes, average 5.00 out of 5)

Although recent knee surgery will keep Canadian 2012 Olympic gymnastics team honorary captain Christine (Peng-Peng) Lee out of contention for this summer's Games in Rio de Janeiro, she told IG she is eager for the new opportunities that lie ahead after she recovers.

Lee on beam for UCLA in February 2016

"I'm not sure exactly what happened, but I know my left knee was clicking and popping, and it seemed really abnormal," said Lee, a UCLA sociology major from Richmond Hill, Ont. "So I got an MRI and we realized it was a torn meniscus. I just got a scope and they took out the tear. It was a really small tear, so the healing process should be a lot quicker, but I'm still trying to get the swelling down. It's a little more difficult since I've had knee issues, but I'm just trying to everything we can do."

Lee, whose two previous ACL surgeries on the same knee included one that kept her from competing at the 2012 Olympics, said she is unsure how her latest injury occurred.

"It could have been some wear and tear," she said. "I remember landing a vault, and it popped a bit, but it didn't seem like a big issue because sometimes it would pop and sometimes it wouldn't. It was a mysterious thing that was happening, and I was just trying to keep positive, but it came to the point where I needed an MRI to clear my conscience."

Following her surgery three weeks ago, Lee hopes to return to competition in time for the NCAA Regional Championships on April 2.

"It was good that they found something, because then I could move forward and do everything in my will to get my knee really healthy," she said. "For Regionals, I'm looking at competing on bars, because it's not a heavy landing, and hopefully beam. But we're just trying to make sure the swelling is all out and my muscle is firing properly, to make sure it's safe and my knee is super healthy."

Prior to enrolling at UCLA, Lee was one of Canada's leading international competitors. She was the Canadian women's top all-arounder at the 2011 World Championships in Tokyo, where she placed 19th in the all-around final. Earlier in 2011 she placed fourth all-around at the Pan American Games in Guadalajara.

Lee led Canada to a Games-winning team berth at the Olympic test event in London in January 2012, where she was sixth all-around in qualifications. She placed third all-around at the Pacific Rim Championships in Everett, Wash., in March 2012; and first on uneven bars and fourth on floor exercise at the Challenge Cup of Osijek, Croatia, in April 2012.

During training at the Canadian championships in May 2012, Lee tore her left ACL on vault. She traveled to the London Olympics that summer as the Canadian team's honorary captain, after which she enrolled at UCLA.

Lee missed the 2012-13 NCAA season while rehabilitating from the injury, and missed the 2013-14 season after she underwent revision ACL surgery in November 2013.

Although Lee initially planned to try for the Rio Games, her latest injury forced her to reconsider. Last November she underwent thumb surgery.

"I've opted out of the Olympics," she said. "It was a really hard decision, but I realized that I've had two surgeries this year and it's not worth it to put my body at risk. I am getting older and my health is a little more important to me now, because I need my body for the rest of my life."

Despite missing the chance to compete in the 2012 and 2016 Games, Lee said she is realistic about her expectations.

"I love the Olympics, and it was such an honor to go in 2012," she said. "I'm still rooting for Team Canada and I'm sure they will do amazingly, but I think it's the best decision to me. I've definitely put a lot of thought into it. My body is telling me that this isn't my time."

Lee said she anticipates future competitions for UCLA.

"I do have two more years of eligibility," she said. "However, I am only going to use one more year of it to stay for a fifth year."

The 22-year-old Lee said she is optimistic about upcoming experiences in and out of the gym.

"I'm looking forward to other, new things in my life," she told IG. "I'm excited for the future. Rio would have been an amazing opportunity, but the Olympics isn't something that's going to define me. I'm really looking forward to everything else in life. I've learned a lot about myself, especially being in college. There's so much more to life."

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