Sunday, February 6, 2011

News For All Youse

Well, it seems a bit inappropriate at the moment to say "after a news drought comes a news flood!" so, err, after a lack of news comes a great abundance.

1. Gymnastics is one of a number of sports that will receive a significant funding boost in the lead-up to the London Olympics (next year! I can't believe it's only NEXT YEAR, people!). Read about it in The Australian here. Lauren Mitchell featured in an accompanying picture.

A $2.5 million war chest has been assembled to help Australian athletes
take medals from their British arch-rivals at next year's London Olympics...

Federal Sports Minister Mark Arbib has redirected the money from the Australian Sports Commission to launch the Green and Gold Project, which will provide extra funding to shore up Australia's position as one of the top five Olympic nations.

The 10 sports which will benefit from the funding are: swimming, cycling, rowing, sailing, canoeing, athletics, diving, gymnastics, triathlon and equestrian.

2. The Victorian Women's High Performance Centre has scheduled an Open Day at training for the 5th of March. Details to follow. Britt Greeley has bounced back, Ash Brennan is still going strong and Mez Monckton has been welcomed with open arms. And one among their ranks has been successfully working a Baitova to crashmats, so keep your eyes out for that on the day as well!

3. Blogger Courtney Fitzgerald forwarded me an interview she conducted with national women's coach Peggy Liddick. Onya, Courtney!

What was it like when you saw Lauren's score in the floor finals and saw she was in first place?
It was so exciting! I knew she had the potential to get the highest score and win the gold medal, but you never know what the judges are going to decide. It was so satisfying to know so much hard work had paid off.

What was it like seeing Lauren standing on the medal podium?
Very emotional. I was so proud of her. Listening to the Australian national anthem for the first time in Women's Artistic Gymnastics at a World Championships was one of the most memorable moments of my time in gymnastics.

Are you looking foward to the 2012 olympics?
London 2012 is going to be a very exciting time for gymnastics. This group of gymnasts that will be eligible for the Olympics this time, I have been working with since I arrived in Australia in 1997. I think they are going to do Australia very proud and it is going to be a very well run and exciting Games! I am very much looking forward to the Games and the process of leading up to them over the next 18 months.

Are there any rising talents that you think the Australian public should keep their eyes on?
We have a lot of talented Junior gymnasts at the moment with a large group of girls on the National Squad. It will be interesting to see over this year who can handle the big stage and compete when it counts. Angela Donald has had some great results over the last year and I am looking forward to seeing what she can do with her gymnastics this year and taking it to the next level.

Who has the funniest personality on the Australian team?
They are all lovely girls on the team. Georgia Bonora and Georgia Wheeler are always making all the girls laugh though.

Was Dehli magical?
Delhi was a great experience. We have such fantastic results which always makes the competition experience a lot more enjoyable. But being a part of a Australian team which involves other sports is such a great experience for the girls. Experiencing the culture of New Delhi was something I hadn’t experienced before so this was also a memorable trip for me.

After the team had a "meltdown" on beam in the Commonwealth Games, did it ever cross your mind that you may have to settle with silver?
Unfortunately, our start on the beam was not the best, but I never think of the results or medals throughout the competition because that is something I cannot control. I just got the girls to re-group and put beam behind them as we still had 3 apparatus left to go. The girls pulled back together as a team really well and I couldn’t be prouder of them.


Anonymous said...

5th of March? I HAVE IT OFF! Finally, finally, I can go! :D Thanks for the heads-up, Mez!

BTW, Shona has debuted with STanford of beam and floor, with EXCELLENT scores and some very positive comments! This is such great news for Australian gym. Shona is a fabulous example for staying involved in gym after elite retirement.


Anonymous said...

whats a Baitova

Anonymous said...

It's a DTY

Anonymous said...

Shona won beam and floor! Both tied but still awesome!

Anonymous said...

I strongly encourage everyone to have a look at Shona's FX on the SWG Facebook site. The choreography is fabulous. I had no idea that Shona was such a good dancer, or that she could project so much presence. So excited to follow her career!

Anonymous said...

More info on the funding.. glad Gymnastics got some but it wasn't all that significant:

Swimming $1 million
Cycling $300 000
Rowing $300 000
Sailing $250 000
Canoeing $250 000
Athletics $135 000
Diving $100 000
Gymnastics $65 000
Triathlon $50 000
Equestrian $50 000

Also is this actually an increase considering the AIS shut its resi program?

Anonymous said...

GA have added the following meets to their calendar -

AUS v GB March 2-7 Jun/Sen

American Cup 5 March (Mitchell-Bonora has also now qualified since JYY pulled out but I don't expect to see her there)

Cottbus WC March 11

Friendship Classic 18 March

Paris WC March 19 (there is 1 Aussie WAG registered for UB/BB/FX)

Any idea who are sending to these meets? There is no camp between now and then so the girls must have been chosen already.

Anonymous said...

Paris is a world cup A so i think only Lauren can attend

Anonymous said...

It seems weird that in like three weeks we will be sending a junior/senior team to compete against GBR and it was just out of the blue. Can this be right? I don't see who would possibly even go?

Anonymous said...

Wild Rose at the start of April has been added too - I checked the site for the meet and they are indeed sending an Australian team.

I hope it is not something like one gymnast for each meet, as there are lots of senior girls from 1994 and 1995 who need the experience.

Anonymous said...

The World Cup A meets have a restricted selection. Lauren automatically qualifies to the AA and BB and FX finals of all Cat A events. There's a prelim round with 12 girls with the top 4 going through to a final. Cat. A EF World Cups have all the EF qualifiers from Rotterdam + the top four from the 2010 World Cup ranking list for each apparatus (if anyone declines they just seem to go down the 2010 World Cup ranking list until they have a total of 12 gymnasts).

I would gues that by virtue of her 1st and 3rd on UB last year at world cup events Lauren fulfils the criteria. She's currently ranked 5th on UB.

I'm interested in who is being sent to Cottbus. I hope it's not Lauren as she doesn't need the experience of a Cat B comp and runs the risk of burn out or injury from too many events.

We should be able to send 2 girls for UB/BB/FX accoring to this:

Category B EF World Cups - the federations of the best 12 gymnasts per apparatus from the 2010 World Cup Ranking list are invited, with a max of two participants per country.

The Aus v Gbr meet was originally supposed to be a tri meet with the U.S too. Looks like that may have changed though.

Did Shona do two 1.5s in her routine? I didn't know that they were allowed to do that. Do they count it as different skills if they do different rebounds out of the tumble? She scored very well so obviously there wasn't a deduction for it.

Anonymous said...

Why would VWHPC schedule their open day when there is a dual meet on? Surely most of their older athletes would be selected if we sent say 2 teams of 5 (1 senior, 1 junior). It doesn't make sense.

Anonymous said...

Is there a link to Shona's routine? Would love to see it. I couldn't find it anywhere!

Anonymous said...

Click on wall then scroll down to find Shona's routines.

Anonymous said...

Definitely do the effort to look at Shona's floor. It's worth it!

She is still recovering from her knee injury, too, so we may see some upgraded tumbling in the future.

Anonymous said...

Camp Report from VWHPC:-nothing special.

"Camp Report

A great 5 day camp to begin 2011!
Coaches and gymnasts from around Australia came together in Canberra. Everyone was motivated and excited about the year ahead. The focus this year is on the 2011 World Championships. All gymnasts and coaches were working hard on improving their skills and connections for their routines.

Congratulations to the following girls on their hard work;
Ashleigh Brennan
Britt Greeley
Tierra Exum
Georgia-rose Brown
Laura Hingston
Alex Eade
Zoe Lorenzin
Mary-Anne Monckton"

Anonymous said...

I hope Larrissa Miller gets sent to a World Cup meet then. It'd be something nice for her to boost her confidence and get some more experience under her belt.

Anonymous said...

Shona features in this Stanford training session video:

Looks like she'll be aiming to compete as an AAer fairly soon.