Local gymnasts take on America

PUBLISHED: 14:43 23 July 2007 | UPDATED: 11:19 24 May 2010

THREE gymnasts and two coaches from Weston Aerobic Gymnastic Club are flying out this weekend to Los Angeles to compete at

THREE gymnasts and two coaches from Weston Aerobic Gymnastic Club are flying out this weekend to Los Angeles to compete at the American National Championship.Matthew and Katherine Saunders are following in their mother's footsteps as she competed at the same competition in 1995.Matthew, who is unbeaten in this country, will be representing Great Britain in the 10-11-year-old age group and Katherine will be joined by club mate Katrina Rose and fellow Great Britain squad member Natalie Porter in the 15-17 year trio event.Natalie was selected to join the trio as her terrific international experience and her gymnastic ability will help take the trio to even more success.Two coaches from the club are flying out with the full squad of 10 gymnasts, Debbie Saunders is one of the coaches and Nigel will be head of delegation.The gymnasts have been in intense training for the last few months to prepare for this event, to ensure they perform at their absolute best they are training for nearly 15 hours a week and are hoping to improve on their recent International success.* The South West Championships have just been held over the last three weekends due to the high number of clubs in the region now and the number of competitors.The first weekend were the tumbling championships, which were held in Gloucester and even though Monarchs are not a tumbling club, managed to enter a few of their gymnasts with fantastic results. Chris Rogers, gold, and brother Sean and Connor McKenna both winning golds in their age groups; Ashley Payne and Connor Phillips, silver; and Carmen Benham winning a bronze in her first tumbling competition. The following weekend was the turn of the floor with the top NDP levels and junior and senior levels competing. Monarchs' out of age trios Zoe Jennings, Jordan Emmett and Jessica Titcombe won the gold and Helen Whaley, Rebecca Rolfe and Nicole McArdle took the silver medals. Chris Rogers and Sean McKenna silver; Ashley Payne and Emily Woolley silver; Chris Collins and Lauren Jarrett bronze; Zoe Counsell, Steph Barker and Connor Phillips bronze. Chris Rogers also finished in first position in a men's four from the South West region.Last weekend was the turn of the younger gymnasts working at the first three levels and Jacob Baker and Connor McKenna finished in second place winning silver medals.Monarchs have finished competitions for a while now until going out to Germany in November and have just had a new intake of young gymnasts from their feeder club where they start from three years of age and where new members are always welcome. Anyone interested should telephone Sue or Tony Merrett on 01278 793457 for more information.

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