Sunday, December 30, 2012

The Best of 2012

It gets tricky to recall every gymnastics happening of 2012. It becomes more and more of a debacle to put together the categories I would normally put up each year. Also, isn't mentioning 'sad' events a thing that makes you sad? Yeah.

This year I'd just like to narrow down AGB's highlights to the "best of"s.

1. What was the best Australian artistic, rhythmic or gymsport routine(s) you saw this year?

2. What was your favourite moment in Australian gymnastics this year??
(medal win, sideline moment, media or social media appearance etc)

Comment on this post with the routine details (gymnast name, competition, apparatus/discipline), and say why you liked it, or what it meant when it happened. Was it the best execution you've seen? Was it huge skills nobody else was busting out? Was it someone's comeback? Was it an event Australia hasn't done well in before? Was it a clutch routine for the team? What excited, delighted or ignited your gymbrain this year? And if you can't find a video of it to link to, describe it and I will try to track it down for you

Here are some the AGB elves enjoyed...

Artistic: Women's floor. Lauren Mitchell, London Olympics team prelims. What can we say? Resplendent in the green and gold, Lauren battled an abdominal injury to complete a routine good enough for a finals slot, which then led to a wonderful moment for 2012: our highest ever women's individual Olympic finish.

Artistic: Men's rings. Josh Jefferis, Pacific Rim Championships event final. Cool Hand Joshy! One of Australia's few medal wins (bronze) on American soil at a PRC. Clean with a very determined dismount. Hearing he medalled for this brought a smile to my dial.

Artistic: Women's uneven bars. Olivia Vivian, National apparatus finals. At the national championships, our expat expert on bars proved irrefutably that she can still rule the roost. What a dismount! What! A! Dismount!

Acrobatics: Odyssey, Australia's Got Talent 2012 grand final. Awww yiss. Acro on the nationally televised stage... and SUCH acro! Just listen to the reception!

Rhythmic: Ball. Janine Murray, London Olympics prelims. Yes, she quite literally drops the ball towards the very end. But her fluidity and personality prior to the mistake are just great. So stylish! The ball and ribbon routines are my personal favourites of Janine's repertoire.

So, over to you.

I'll add your suggestions and comments to a new post that will continue to be updated as they come in. Feel the love!

And also feel free to highlight routines that aren't at Olympic or otherwise elite levels (but preferably not ones from budding gymmers "just because they are my son/daughter"! Otherwise the post might explode!)

Friday, December 21, 2012

Breakfast With Brennan

If you missed the chat with Ash Brennan at the Victorian High Performance Centre a while back, video of the day has gone up at their channel here.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

WA Leads The Way

Like her trophy cabinet wasn't overloaded enough...

On December 13th, Lauren Mitchell was awarded the Winter Strickland Medal for 2012, at WA'S ANZ Sports Star Awards. The medal is awarded "for the most outstanding performance by a Western Australian olympian at the most recent Summer and Winter Olympic Games, as voted by Members of the Olympians Club of WA".

Lauren's coaches, Martine and Nikolai, were also up for Coach of The Year. Her training partner and London teammate Emily Little was up for Junior Sports Star of the Year.

A full list of the gymnastics nominees in all award categories can be found here.

If you're interested in the medal's namesake, read a short piece here.

Image courtesy Gymnastics WA

Monday, December 17, 2012

NCAA G'day/Goodbye

The US university gymnastics season is soon upon us.

We have had Aussies farewell the collegiate world this year, while some are still plugging away at it.

So what are they up to as the 2012/13 season fires up?


Perth's Olivia Vivian left the OSU Beavers in good spirits, and even brought bottled some to bring back back to Australia, in winning a maiden National Clubs senior all-around title. Back in Oregon,  2008 Olympic squad team-mate Melanie Jones is bouncing back from disappointment at last year's NCAA Nationals floor final to barrel towards a new season, her last with the school. Let's hope there are more perfect 10s for her beautiful work next year.

You can see photos of Mel in action at the recent OSU intersquad competition here. She was apparently 'unwell' and did not compete all events on the day. I wish I looked that good when I'm under the weather!


Monique Blount has also graduated from the collegiate scene after a shaky four years in the program. Strongest on beam and floor just like she was back home, the Psychology major battled injury for much of her time in the lineup. However, she managed to compete in two conference championships (the EAGL) with her team.

 Image courtesy GWU Gymnastics page at Facebook

There hasn't beeen frequent (or easy to find) video coverage of Monique throughout her GW career. Here is a video from the start of the 2012 season, of her in action on floor, courtesy of Gymnastike.

You can see a farewell video to Monique and her fellow final-year teammates on the GWU homepage right here (Click on the Videos tab, look in the sidebar for "Senior Day vs Towson"). We wish her the best and hope she has many happy memories of her time with the Colonials.


You can't keep a good ginger down. Waverley's own Shona Morgan will be taking on her third of four years in the Stanford program.

Image courtesy SWG

A regular lead-off for the team, Shona rocked 2012 on beam, bars and floor. She also finished the season with the "Team Academic Award" and Stanford's highest beam score of the year (a phenomenal 9.925).

You can see Shona in videos of the team's very recent December Intersquad for the 2012/13 season on Stanford's Facebook page. (Shona leads off on bars and beam.)

They've got spirit, yes they do! They've got spirit, how about you?

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Got It Pegged

Australian women's national coach Peggy Liddick shared a word with International Gymnast this week.

You can read the interview here.

"Dasha [Joura] is still in and out of the gym, keeping her feet wet. Again, she has not committed either way and I feel she can always contribute to our team when she is fit."

Happy Birthday To...

Junior Olympic Games medallist Angela Donald!