The Youth Olympic Games
The gymnasts left these shores carrying high hopes and a real willingness to give everything in pursuit of medals at the Youth Olympic Games. On their return, every single team athlete could feel proud of their achievements. And there were certainly five great reasons to smile with the word, ‘final’, constantly springing to mind.
First Day Feel Good Factor
To spring from ninth place up to fifth in a world competition is a feat in itself given the fine margins at play in the sport. Artistic gymnast Adam Tobin provided a wonderful example of what real character is all about, in doing just that. He conjured up a brilliant vault at a crucial time to leapfrog those directly in front of him and notch up an overall score of 79.573. He said: “I was pleased with fifth. I was in ninth at one point and had to do something spectacular to get back in the top six. I had to do the best vault I could, and I did, I stuck that and got a high score.”
As for high-level consistency, how does reaching five finals in total sound in vault, floor, pommel, rings and parallel bars? There may have been no medals, but for North Devon based Adam, who gave the eventual winners a real run for their money, it offered up hope for future success.
In short, he was a credit to the team.
Second Day Supremacy
Day two at the Youth Olympic Games largely belonged to the amazing Amelie Morgan who blitzed her way to a Silver in the all-around event. Pressure is something the young Buckinghamshire gymnast takes in her stride. Amelie sat fourth following early routines needing to produce something special to get into the medals. And the athlete responded with a couple of completely unblemished performances to power her way into second place. She told the media: “I’m over the moon to be stood here in second place at the Youth Olympics. I was definitely a bit more nervous coming into this event knowing that the standard was that much higher than what I’ve competed against before. I just went out there and did the best that I could, and it’s paid off.”
Third Day Dedication
Amelie kept up her superb standards finishing in fourth place on the uneven bars after being edged out of the medals with the last routine. She completed the vault exercises in sixth place. There was, however, much more to come from this incredibly talented athlete…
Enter, Adam Tobin once more who finished an agonizing seventh on the floor not too far away in terms of marks from a medal. He competed admirably on the pommel but had to be happy with a ninth-place finish.
Fourth Day Fever
It was time for British sporting history to be made in the form of Andrew Stamp from Market Harborough. He became the first UK athlete to win a medal on trampoline, and never before has a Silver medal been so coveted.
Andrew stormed to fifth to grab a place in the event final, before immediately heading the leaderboard with a score of 57.475. Then it was a case of waiting anxiously to see how everyone else got on. But only China’s Fantao Fu could manage to overtake him, and so it was a thrilling podium invitation for Andrew. He said: “This is way up there at the top of what I’ve achieved. Two silver medals at the World Age Championships, but this one trumps them all. This is crazy! It’s absolutely surreal but it’s just the best experience ever. I really enjoyed the competition, felt confident and just had to deliver my routine.”
Jess Clarke knows all about flying high and she kept right on course for a place in the final of the women’s trampoline. She couldn’t have given any more on her way to a creditable sixth place carrying a score of 49.410. “I’m so happy and it’s certainly not something I thought I would achieve at the start of this year, she said. “It was a really tough final, with a lot of excitement and I wasn’t sure I would make the final, so I just wanted to perform clean routines.”
And to top it all, Adam Tobin competed in his third individual final of the week, finishing fifth on rings with a total of 13.033 marks.
Fantastic Fifth Day Feeling
This was the day Amelie Morgan leapt back into the limelight collecting her second and third medals of the games in Buenos Aires. Starting superbly on the beam as she worked her way to an impressive 13.033 marks – enough to secure a much-valued Bronze Medal. It wasn’t long before the floor beckoned – and, in truth, Amelie couldn’t have come closer to a Gold, missing out by just 0.067 marks! As it was, she grabbed the Silver scoring 13.233.
Our friend Adam landed fifth spot in the parallel bars final and considering the world-class field, it was a superb achievement. And we shouldn’t forget the acrobatic pairing of Clyde Gembickas and Sophia Imrie-Gale, who performed brilliantly taking eighth position in the final with a score of 26.770. As it was, Bulgaria took home the Gold medal with both Israel and Ukraine finishing second and third respectively.
All in all, that South American magic combined with British skill and agility worked wonders in Argentina at the Youth Olympic Games. Well done to all those who competed!
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