Airdrie gymnast strikes gold in Daytona Beach
By: Lucas Punkari
| Posted: Thursday, May 22, 2014 10:13 am
In what was a tune-up event for the 2014 Canadian Gymnastics Championships in Ottawa, Airdrie’s Brody Atkin returned from Daytona Beach, Florida with a gold medal around his neck.
The 16-year-old earned first place in the boys’ 17 and 18 men’s double mini trampoline event at the 2014 Stars and Stripes Cup competition, which was on May 10 and 11.
“I was pretty happy about that result as the event was a little bit different from the other events that I’m used to here in Canada,” Atkin said.
“I’m not an international competitor or anything like that, so it’s still a little bit new to me to be competing against guys from all over North America in a different place.”
Atkin, who qualified for the finals with an eighth place result in the qualifying round, nailed his final performance to earn the gold medal with a score of 67.80 in the championship round.
“The way the event worked there was a little bit different than most of the events I go to in Canada, where they add up your preliminary round scores to determine the final standings,” Atkin explained.
“Here, they erased everyone’s score once you qualified for the finals, so that changed up our strategy a little bit.”
Atkin’s coach, and his father, Jamie worked with his son on making sure that they didn’t repeat the same routine twice, in order to earn a high score.
“What we did is have him do two not as difficult routines that he would nail in the preliminary round, and then we had two routines that are a little riskier but are higher in difficulty in the finals,” Jamie explained.
“It was a gamble, but worked out in our favour, as some guys used their bigger routines in the preliminary rounds but they ended up making mistakes,” he added.
Atkin is now gearing up for the nationals, which will be held in Ottawa from May 26 to 31, where he will be competing in the double mini trampoline and trampoline events.
“I’m not in the senior levels yet when it comes to those events, so I’ll be taking part in the junior events in Ottawa,” Atkin said.
“I’m looking forward to it a lot, as it’s always fun to see guys you haven’t seen in awhile.”
“I’m hoping to do my best once again there, and hopefully I can come away with a good result,” he added.