Huntingdon Gymnasts Shine at British Championships
Huntingdon Gymnastics Club was well represented at the British Gymnastics Championships, held at the Echo Arena in Liverpool over the weekend. The event marked a welcome return to form for Daniel Keatings who took bronze in the all around event, behind fellow Olympians Max Whitlock of South Essex, and Southport's Daniel Purvis, who took silver. Keatings, 23, was in fine form taking a gold medal on the Parallel Bars with a score of 15.45, a silver on Pommel Horse, and a bronze on floor. Sam Oldham finished in 4th place all around, qualifying for 5 finals.
Clubmate Louis Smith continued to impress in his Commonwealth comeback campaign by performing a superb routine on Pommel Horse to take bronze, with just one tenth separating him from Keatings and Max Whitlock, who took gold. In Sunday's final the tables were turned as Keatings performed the most difficult routine of the day, scoring 16.133 to beat Whitlock who took silver, with Smith taking a second bronze. The 3 scores were some of the highest in the world this year and underline the incredible depth that GB has on this piece of apparatus. Both Keatings and Smith are now serious contenders for berths on the GB team for the European Championships to be held in Bulgaria in May.
Junior aspirant Tony Duchars took a well deserved bronze medal on Pommel Horse in the Youth Competition, with Benji Eyre also finishing well on the 6 men's apparatus. In the girls Junior Section Lottie Smith and Becky Morris finished 11th and 15th respectively.
Huntingdon Gymnast, Cameron Mackenzie, was also in action at the African Championships, held in Pretoria over the weekend. Mackenzie recently reverted back to his original South African status and worked well to finish fourth, with a solid performance that will increase his chances of Commonwealth selection
Both Louis and Dan now have a very busy few weeks ahead, with Keatings flying to Brazil next week for a GB International, and Louis Smith heading to Korea for a World Cup Competition against some of the best exponents of Pommel Horse in the World. Both gymnasts are hoping for selection to the Glasgow Games this summer, with Keatings representing Scotland, and Smith hoping to win his second Commonwealth Pommel title for England.