Just over a couple of weeks away from a whole new quad, I thought it would be nice to look back over the last four years at the 2013-2016 quad in terms of the British senior gymnasts. A very successful quad, with the first Olympic floor medal, one historic world team medal, two European bars titles, the first AA European medal, two European team silvers, five individual European silvers, the Commonwealth Games team title, and bronze medal, as well as eight individual medals.
In part one, I look back at the bigger competitions and results of 2013 and 2014.
A new quad, and with the three of the five 2012 Olympians moving on, there were new names to look out for, including fresh into the senior ranks, 2012 English and British AA junior Champion Gabby Jupp of Saphire. Gabby began her year at the American Cup where she placed 6th AA, including second on beam ahead of Simone Biles, Elisabeth Seitz, and Vanessa Ferrari with this strong routine full of attack and confidence.
The same weekend that Gabby was in the US, the English Championships were held, 2012 Olympian Hannah Whelan of Liverpool taking the AA title, with Niamh Rippin of Notts the silver, and Laura Edwards of Dynamo the bronze. Jocelyn Hunt of Horsham took the vault title, followed by Hannah, The Academy’s Ruby Harrold the bronze. Becky Downie competed on bars only taking the title, followed by Laura Edwards, and Liverpool’s Charlie Fellows. Hannah Whelan took the beam title with Dynamo’s Kelly Simm and Laura Edwards taking silver and bronze. Niamh took the floor title, with Charlie Fellows and Sapphire’s Eleanor Thompson sharing the silver.
English AA medalists L-R Niamh Rippin, Hannah Whelan, Laura Edwards
As ever, shortly after the English, came the British Championships, and the Junior British Champion became the Senior when Gabby took the title with 56.150, ahead of Charlie Fellows with 54.900, and Niamh Rippin with 53.650.
In the apparatus finals, Niamh took gold on vault followed by Kelly Simm, then City of Glasgow’s Amy Regan, on Bars Becky Downie who also just competed on bars here took gold, Gabby silver, and Ruby Harrold bronze, the medalists of course being the same trio that would represent GB on bars in this year’s European team final. Gabby took the beam title, followed by Hannah Whelan, with Park Wrekin’s Georgina Hockenhull taking bronze, Gabby took her third gold of the championships on floor, with Cardiff Central’s Raer Theaker taking silver, and Niamh the bronze.
British AA medalists L-R Charlie Fellows, Gabby Jupp, Niamh Rippin
Gabby AA Bars
Charlie AA Floor
Niamh AA Vault
At the end on March, Gabby and Ruby travelled to the World Cup in Doha, where Ruby took silver on bars with the unique and innovative work we have become used to seeing from her, and Gabby took bronze on beam with yet another hit routine under pressure, and then bronze again on floor.
In to April, and an individual European Championships this year, Ruby Harrold, Becky Downie, Gabby Jupp, and Charlie Fellows selected to travel to Moscow. It was at this competition of course that Gabby Jupp suffered the first of her ACL tears, having competed well on bars in qualification, Gabby then went to beam where the injury took place. We would not see Gabby again until 2014.
Ruby and Charlie qualified for the AA, Ruby finishing 8th, and Charlie 18th. For apparatus finals Becky and Ruby qualified to the final in second and fifth place respectively, it wasn’t to be in the final, with unfortunate falls for both gymnasts placing them 7th and 8th. Ruby also qualified to the beam final where she competed really well to finish sixth.
There aren’t a huge amount of vidoes form this championships, but here are a few.
Charlie UB AA
Ruby AA Vault
Ruby Beam Final
The final big event of the year was of course World Championships, this time held in Antwerp Belgium. As ever after an Olympic year, it was an individual world championships, with four spots available. Becky Downie, Rebecca Tunney, Ruby Harrold, and Hannah Whelan were selected.
Hannah competed well on floor, Becky and Ruby qualified to the bars finals in fourth and seventh place. In the AA Ruby placed 17th, and Rebecca Tunney 19th.
Hannah Floor QF
Ruby Floor AA
Becky Bars QF
Rebecca Tunney Bars QF
In the bars final, Ruby went through her routine very well for 14.333, Becky went through her routine superbly, even better than in qualifications just right until the end. She was one skill away from her giant into dismount, the toe half, when she overcooked it and came of the bar. A huge shame as until that point, it was one of her best routines to date.
Ruby Bars Final
Becky Bars Final
Into 2014, and again starting with the English Championships, Ruby Harold took the title with 54.35, Kelly Simm the silver with 53.950, and Claudia Fragapane the bronze with 53.650. The vault title went to Becky Downie who competed all pieces but floor here, silver to Kelly, and bronze to Claudia. Ruby took her second gold on bars, Becky the silver, and Charlie Fellows the bronze. Beam went to Becky Downie, silver to South Durham’s Jade Armstrong, and bronze to Heathrow’s Loriah James. Kelly took the floor title, Emily Crowe of Norfolk Academy took silver, and Ruby the bronze.
English AA medalists L-R Kelly Simm, Ruby Harrold, Claudia Fragapane.
At the end of March it was time for the British Championships, Rebecca Tunney took the AA title with 56.750, including a much upgraded bar routine with a toe on piked Tktatchev linked immediately to a Bhardwaj, and a Maloney to Pak to Chow half combination. Great difficulty well executed for 15.250. Rebecca also vaulted a strong double twisting Yurchenko for 14.850.
Becky Downie took the silver with 56.350, A big 15.00 for her double twisting Yurchenko, she had a mistake on bars which took her down to 14.150, but competed well on beam and floor to secure the silver medal. Watching Becky’s floor again after all this time reminded me what a classy worker she was on this piece.
Claudia Fraganpane took the bronze with 55.700, she had a strong AA competition including debuting the full twisting double straight we are now so used to seeing from her on floor, and hitting her difficult beam.
Rebecca Tunney Vault AA
Becky Downie Floor AA
Claudia Fragapane Beam AA
In apparatus finals, Kelly Simm took gold on vault, with Claudia in silver, and City of Birmingham’s Emma White in bronze. Rebecca Tunney hit an even better bar routine to take the title with 15.400, Becky Downie took silver, and Claudia the bronze. On beam Becky Downie took the title a fantastic 15.15, Hannah Whelan the silver also over 15 with 15.05, and Becky Tunney the bronze. On floor, Cardiff Central’s Lizzie Beddoe took the gold, Norfolk Academy’s Emily Crowe the silver, and Hannah Whelan the bronze.
Kelly Vault Final Vault 1
Rebecca Bars Final
Becky Beam Final
Lizzie Floor Final
In May, the first major team event of the quad, and Becky Downie, Claudia Fragapane, Ruby Harrold, Becky Tunney, and Hannah Whelan headed to Sofia Bulgaria for European Championships.
The British team topped qualification over Romania then Russia, Claudia Qualified to vault finals, both Becky’s to bars, Becky Downie to beam, and Caludia to floor. Five finals spots, a new high for the British WAG at European level.
In the team final, it was a silver medal for the team, only the second time a team medal had been achieved. The British team were second on vault, topped the bars standings, and were third on vault and floor.
In apparatus finals Claudia placed 6th on vault, and 8th on floor, Becky Tunney narrowly missed out on the bars bronze by just 0.033, and Becky Downie of course became Great Britain’s second ever women’s European champion when she took gold on bars.
Becky Downie Bars Final
Becky Tunney Bars Final
Claudia Floor Team Final
Ruby Bars Team Final
Hannah Floor Team Final
At the end of July in Glasgow, it was time for a home Commonwealth Games, a huge success for the home nations. Gold in the team event went to Becky Downie, Claudia Fragapane, Ruby Harrold, Kelly Simm, and Hannah Whelan representing England, while Lizzie Beddoe, Georgina Hockenhull, Jessica Hogg, Angle Romaeo, and Raer Theaker took the bronze for Wales.
In the AA, it was a clean sweep for England, with Claudia taking the gold, Ruby the silver, and Hannah the bronze.
In apparatus finals, five more medals for the home nations, with Claudia taking the floor and vault titles, Becky the bars title, and Ruby the bronze, then Georgina Hockenhull the bronze on beam for Wales.
Claudia Floor Final
Ruby Bars Final
Georgina Beam Final
The final major completion of the year, was of course World Championships. We saw the return of Gabby Jupp after her first ACL tear as she was named to the team alongside Becky Downie, Claudia Fragapane, Ruby Harrold, Kelly Simm, and Hannah Whelan.
The team placed 6th, with Claudia and Ruby advancing to the AA where they finished 10th and 11th respectively. Four spots in apparatus finals signalled a step up at world level for the British team, with Claudia finishing 5th on vault and eighth on floor, Ruby finishing eighth on bars, and Becky fifth.
Kelly competed on vault in the team final, and was the second highest scoring team member with 14.766, unfortunately I can’t find footage of her vault, but will add it in if I do.
Hannah Beam Qualifications
Ruby Vault team Final
Claudia Floor Qualifications
Becky Bars Final
Gabby Floor Team Final
Coming next part two of the quad in review, 2016 and 2016.