Two Sault Gymnasts Qualify For Provincial Championships


Once again Sault YMCA Gymnastic team has been successful in having 2 more athletes qualify for Provincial Gymnastic Championships. Talia Hopkin & Madison Pelletier will be competing with the best in the province this coming weekend in Kitchener ON at Gymnastic Ontario Women’s Artistic Gymnastic (WAG) Level 3 Championships.

They are not only best friends, they are classmates during the day & teammates during training nights. “These are 2 of a kind” said Coach Danielle Lukenda “We are so fortunate to have such kind girls that lift each other up both in & out of the gym. Their personalities are so similar that I often get their names mixed up during training. Their scores are reflective of the sound foundation of their skills. It was a smooth transition into a training group with having a different coach this season. They are having an enjoyable competitive year & I enjoy coaching both of them” Lukenda stated.

Both girls are coming in with a strong ranking making the top 47/96 eligible gymnasts in their category in the province. Gymnastics Ontario will be live streaming the competition this weekend on Youtube.

The link can be found on Gymnastic ON website or their facebook page. You can watch both Talia & Madison compete & cheer them on. They start at 4:00pm (order to watch in Gym A – Beam,Floor, Vault, Bars)

Of our 7 eligible provincial girls 3 total qualified for provincials. Keira Lamming was very successful last month at the WAG Level 6 Provincials in London ON.
Here is what both girls stated in response to a few questions.

What do you want people to know about you & your gymnastics journey?

Madison (nearing 13 years old 3 years on the team): I started doing gymnastics relatively late in life. I didn’t know anything about gymnastics at the time and knew I had a lot of catching up to do. It took a lot of hard work and practice to get to where I am today. My coaches have been amazing and they have helped me achieve my goals. Because of their hard work and commitment to the athletes in the club I am the gymnast that I am today.

Talia – (age 13 – 6 years on the team): I want people to know that with hard work and dedication you can accomplish what you dream to do. It is possible because when I started gymnastics I could barely do a cartwheel. I have worked so hard to get new skills. I come ready to work hard and try new things because every practice pays off; and soon you will accomplish what you have been working for.

What is you favourite thing about gymnastics?

Madison – My favourite thing about gymnastics is the competitions. I get to travel with my fellow teammates and I get to compete against other athletes from different clubs. I get to perform my routines for the judges and get marked on how I do.

Talia – I love going to competitions to show my routines. I love meeting other gymnasts & talking to them. Everyone is so nice. After every competition every one of my teammates are always so proud of how everyone has done

What is the hardest thing about gymnastics?

Madison – I find the hardest thing about gymnastics is when you develop a mental block when learning a new skill. This prevents you from being able to complete a new skill. I am so lucky to have an amazing coach who has the patience to help me overcome these situations.

Talia – It is so hard to wrap your head around what you need to do for a new skill. So in gymnastics the hardest part is just the mental part.

What did you accomplish this year that you are most excited about?

Madison – This year I was able to work hard on different floor skills and have been able to put the time in to making them better. I can now do my double back hand springs much better than I ever have been able to do. I was able to place first overall at my first two meets of the year and placed second overall at my last meet. I also received two judges awards this year for most expressive floor routine and best cast on bars.

Talia – I am most proud of getting a round off double back hand spring. I was so excited to learn this skill. Also I scored a 9.8 / 10 on my floor routine and came 1st all around at the last competition.

*For more information about the Sault YMCA Girls Gymnastic team contact the Sault YMCA front desk staff at (705)949-3133 or email [email protected]


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