Posted on 23/02/2019 in Men's Artistic
Frank Baines and Cara Kennedy have been crowned Scottish men’s and women’s champions at the Scottish Artistic Gymnastics Championships in Perth.
Frank was runner-up last year and went on to become British men’s floor champion and win two Commonwealth Games bronze medals in the Gold Coast. He followed that by winning three medals for Great Britain in the World Challenge Cup in Turkey in July.
The 23 year-old takes over the the mantle from his long-term Southport Gymnastics Club and GB teammate Dan Purvis, who announced his retirement at the beginning of the week. The 2017 junior champion and junior European silver medallist Pavel Karnejenko from Notts Gymnastics Academy was second on 76.000, just 0.650 behind Baines. Commonwealth Games bronze medallist David Weir from City of Glasgow was third on 71.350.
Frank said: “It means so much to win the Scottish championship as for the last few years, I’ve been looking up to Dan when he’s been beating me, so to finally win, it’s a massive achievement.
“It was a bit of a up and down competition for me today I was trying some new skills but really happy with it all. My pommel routine was my highlight, I had to fight to stay on as adding in new skills come with their challenges.
I’m competing in the English championships in a week’s time as a guest ahead of the World Cup in Stuttgart so my aim is to build on this for the weeks ahead.”
For Cara, it was a third Scottish women’s senior championship but she had to wait until the end of the competition to be sure of the title. Dundee 2K’s Emily Bremner was the main challenger and the final competitor on the floor, having come first on the bars and beam, with Kennedy winning the vault. However, her routine could not match up, and her all-around score of 50.150 as just behind Kennedy’s 50.450. Commonwealth Games gymnast Ellie Russell (West Lothian) was third on 49.350.
Speaking afterwards, Cara said: “I made the decision after the Games last year to take a bit of a break from gymnastics and really enjoy it. Today it showed and it’s really paid off. Since the Gold Coast, I’ve changed personal coaches and now with Rod & Pauline Smith, and I've started coaching and now really enjoying time in the gym.
“My highlight today was my floor routine. It's my favourite piece of apparatus, however over the last few seasons, I've had a few ankle injuries and I've not been able to show my full potential so I was really pleased with how that went today. I am now aiming for the British championships next month.”
In the earlier session at Bell’s Sports Centre, Crystelle Lake from City of Glasgow Gymnastics Club and Kennedi Foster (Dynamic Gymnastics Academy) also retained their titles. Crystelle’s all-around score of 48.500 secured the junior women’s championship for the second year running, ahead of club mate Millie Redford (47.950) and West Lothian’s Lauren McCormack (46.050). In the espoirs, behind Foster’s winning total of 48.050, was Tilly Bee from West Lothian who won silver with 45.350), and Milli De O’Hara bronze with 45.200.
The junior men’s championship was won by Cameron Lister from Pipers Vale on 72.400, while West Lothian’s Aidan Jordaan and Euan McLellan joined him on the podium having scored 71.250 and 67.350 respectively.
Rory Smith (City of Glasgow) added the under 16 youth championship to his under 12 and under 14 titles of previous years, with a score of 67.400 ahead of Cameron Lynn (66.350) and his West Lothian team mate Liam Watson (60.100).
Reuben Ward (Manchester) retained his under 14 champion’s title with an improved total of 72.000 impressive 72, while Hamilton’s Aaron Gregory became men’s under 12 champion (65.700) narrowly beating club mate Casey Flynn (65.500) with Beacon Boys’ Moray Gault earning the bronze medal with 64.800.
The men’s team competition was won by West Lothian A ahead of Hamilton A and City of Glasgow A, while City of Glasgow’s A team won the women’s competition ahead of Dynamic A and Dundee 2K.
Full results can be found on Gymdata