Mollie's up for elite status

PUBLISHED: 09:58 30 November 2006 | UPDATED: 11:17 06 May 2010

Mollie in action

Mollie in action

Mollie Smith has again achieved national success in gymnastics. The Marriotts gymnast was competing in the British Gymnastics National Challenge Cup in the espoir age group (for gymnasts aged 12 to 13-years-old). The Challenge Cup is open to gymnasts who

Svetlana Lebiadzinskaya who is shown with Mollie

Mollie Smith has again achieved national success in gymnastics.

The Marriotts gymnast was competing in the British Gymnastics National Challenge Cup in the espoir age group (for gymnasts aged 12 to 13-years-old).

The Challenge Cup is open to gymnasts who are not qualified to compete in the elite level national championships, and also acts as a qualifier to move up to the elite level next year.

The competition was at the Rushmore Academy in Aldershot and 49 gymnasts from all over the UK took part in the espoir section.

It was split into two rounds, with Mollie in the first half of the competition.

She put in a superb consistent set of routines with no major faults, and after the first half of the competitors had performed, Mollie was in first place.

There was then an agonising three-hour wait as the second half of the competition progressed.

Other gymnasts started with excellent routines but, with one exception, they all faltered on one piece or another.

So Mollie came away with a superb silver medal in the overall competition, with a score of 46.15 which is her highest score under the new judging regulations.

She also took bronze on vault for her piked Tsukahara vault (cartwheel up onto the vault and a one and a half somersault off in a piked shape), and for her beam routine which included both a front and a back somersault on the beam.

On bars she just missed another bronze medal by 0.05 of a mark.

The pass mark for moving up to the elite level British championships is to be announced but it is hoped that this performance will be sufficient for her to progress up to the top level of national competition in 2007.

Mollie had warmed up for the Challenge Cup by competing in an invitational competition in Belgium a week earlier, along with fellow Marriotts gymnast Anna Young.

Both gymnasts put in strong performances against gymnasts of national and international standard.

Coaches Derek Trotter and Svetlana Lebiadzinskaya (who is shown with Mollie) were delighted with the performances.

* Three of the club's recreational level gymnasts took part in the Regional Recreational Apparatus Competition at Ipswich.

Elise Clements, Hannah Walker and Bethany Suppa were Marriotts gymnasts who had qualified for the regional final.

Although not among the medals, they put in good performances.

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