Heading for new heights

PUBLISHED: 11:01 02 November 2006 | UPDATED: 11:08 06 May 2010

Phil Dodson

Phil Dodson

A BOUNCER from Mid Beds is looking to be on top of the world by 2012. Talented trampolinist Phil Dodson is a 20-year-old whose family live in Lower Caldecote near Biggleswade. He is currently a member of the British Gymnastics World Class Development prog

A BOUNCER from Mid Beds is looking to be on top of the world by 2012.

Talented trampolinist Phil Dodson is a 20-year-old whose family live in Lower Caldecote near Biggleswade.

He is currently a member of the British Gymnastics World Class Development programme.

The first criteria for selection to the programme is the potential to represent Great Britain at the Olympics of either 2008 in Beijing or London 2012.

Phil said: "2012 is the aim. I've only just broken into the British senior team and am ranked fourth or fifth, so Beijing is not so realistic as you need to be ranked number one to qualify."

Phil said: "I spent the first 10 years of my trampolining career training in Potton at the Potton Saints Trampoline Club."

He continued: "I achieved my first international selection in 1998, representing Great Britain at the World Age Group Games in Sydney, Australia.

"I was 11th in the individual and fifth in the synchronised event for the under-13 age group.

"I was a member of the junior British team from that competition in 1998 up to the World Age Group Games in Hannover, Germany, in 2003, this time competing in the under-19 age group.

"I was again placed 11th in the individual, and fourth in the synchro event.

"After 2001 I was forced to have to change trampoline clubs as I had outgrown the facility at Potton. I could touch my head on the ceiling!"

He now trains and competes for the Levitation (previously Team Trampoline Promotions) Trampoline Club in Brentwood, Essex.

Phil also does some extra training at the Hitchin Boys' School Sports Centre plus double mini trampoline practice.

This means it is seven days a week training.

His hard work bore fruit when he finished runner-up in the 18-plus men's competition at last year's British National Trampoline Finals.

He was then third in the 19-plus men's competition at this year's British National Trampoline Finals and this year saw him selected for his first senior international representation in trampolining.

He was picked to represent GB in the World Cup in Savignon, Switzerland, where he finished 32nd, halfway up the field and second of the Britons.

The former Stratton Upper School pupil is in the third year of a degree in sports therapy at the University of Hertfordshire in Hatfield.

Trampolining is a family affair as his dad is the high performance coach at the locally based Richard's Trampoline Club, while younger brother Michael, who will be 15 in December, is also showing potential. The Stratton schoolboy is also on the national programme.

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