Whistler gymnasts shine at local meet 

Coach thrilled after successful outing

click to flip through (3) PHOTO BY DAN FALLOON - FIRTH IN FIRST Sophie Firth, shown here competing on the bars, tied for first in her division during the Whistler Spring Classic from June 21 to 23.
  • Photo by Dan Falloon
  • FIRTH IN FIRST Sophie Firth, shown here competing on the bars, tied for first in her division during the Whistler Spring Classic from June 21 to 23.
   

Gymnasts came from far and wide to take part in Oros Whistler Gymnastics' Whistler Summer Classic from June 21 to 23.

Head coach Karin Jarratt said the influx of new talent bodes well for the meet, which in its fifth year expanded from two days to three and brought in 17 visiting clubs.

"Four teams flew into YVR to participate. That really speaks to the commitment the families were willing to make to do this, and all four of those teams, it was their first time ever (at the event)," she said. "I think we must have had a good reputation already for them to trust (us) and put that sort of financial commitment to coming to this."

Jarratt noted that, of visiting clubs, about half of those that attended this weekend aren't ones Whistler Gymnastics regularly sees at competition in the Lower Mainland. She added that it's important for gymnasts to get a sense of what other clubs are doing within the sport.

"For the girls, it was nice to see some new faces and see different styles from different clubs. Everyone brings something a little bit unique to their sport, so the spectrum of not just ability but style and the obvious love for gymnastics (was great)," she said. "It was really neat for our girls to witness it."

While Whistler Gymnastics only had three athletes competing after their teammates suffered injuries or were unavailable, those who did take part put up some impressive results.

Competing in the JO 6 (Sr.) category, Sophie Firth put up a combined 36.6 over the four events to tie for first place with two others. Firth earned a first-place finish on the bars to boost her score. In the same category, Gabbi Collins was seventh overall, and she took second in the floor event.

In the JO 6 (Jr.) event, Charlie Craig was fourth overall, taking home second place on the beam and third on the bars.

Firth and Collins are set to graduate from the club, and Jarratt was impressed with how they went out.

"For me, personally, a few of the routines I received as a goodbye gift because they were the most fantastic routines they'd done all season," she said. "It was definitely bittersweet, because when they're that good, it's so sad that they're leaving but what a great way to leave, being at the top of your game."

Of the weekend's 12 sessions, 11 were allowed to have the vault and beam events outside, which is a unique feature Whistler's event offers.

After pulling off a successful event, Jarratt is already keen for what 2020 will bring.

"We all walked away energized versus exhausted," she said.

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