Two Kelowna gymnastics athletes and their coach took part in the Elite Canada compeition in Halifax on the weekend, returning with solid results, including the top performance from a B.C. athlete in the age 12 and 13 event.
Athletes Lucia Jakab and Gabriela Beselt along with their coach, Sergei Chelest, travelled to Halifax to compete in the High Performance Novice category for their second year. Both girls are 12, turning 13 this year and in their final year of Novice. Next year they will need to move into the Junior category due to their age.
The two-day competition featured the best gymnasts from across the country and overall results came from both days of competition.
The top 36 athletes from the first day, competed on the second day and both Kelowna gymnasts made it to day two. Jakab improved on her 10th place overall showing on day one to finish third overall on day two and give her an overall placing of 5th at the event. It was the top placing for a BC athlete.
Fourty-nine girls born in 2003 or earlier began the competition and Jakab’s best finish was in the vault event where she was in sixth place heading into the second day of competion. She also placed eighth place on the uneven bars going into day two.
For Beselt, it was an event that saw her overcome several injuries over the past few months which had limited her training. She was planning on attending Elite Canada and possibly only compete on the uneven bars, but once she arrived, she was able to compete on all four events for two days in a row.
She finished the second day of competition in 28th spot, but with an improvement of 0.10 over her first day of competition. Her two day total landed her in 27th out of the 49 competitors.
“This competition was a great experience for these young athletes, not only competing with the top athletes in the country in their age category, they also having the opportunity to watch the senior athletes who will be representing Canada in Rio with a full Canadian women’s team,” said the Okanagan Gymnastics Club in a release.
Both of these girls will continue preparing for the upcoming Canadian Championships which will take place at the beginning of June in Edmonton, Alberta.