Rory Smith (12), of Lasswade Gymnastics Club, enjoyed success at both the Scottish and British Championships recently.
On February 27, he competed at the Scottish Championships, moving up to the under 14 age level this year. He won the silver medal in the all-around competition, missing out on the gold by just 0.1 of a mark. He qualified for all the apparatus finals the next day, and went on to become under 14 Scottish Champion on floor, high bar and parallel bars; and got bronzes for vault, rings and pommel horse.
Two weeks later, on March 11, he competed at the British Championships, against 50 of the best boys in the under 14 age group in Britain. This was going to be about experience for Rory, trying to make improvements on his scores from the Scottish Championships, add in a higher difficulty element and perform his routines “clean”.
The Musselburgh youngster managed to do this and in doing so, he ended up placing fourth overall in the all-around, improving his score from the Scottish Championships by over three marks (from 67.70 to 70.35). He was the first placed Scot, and also achieved top ten finishes on high bar (fifth), floor (sixth) and parallel bars (ninth).
Everyone at Lasswade was delighted with Rory’s results. Jillian Givan , Pathways Manager, said: “A lot of hard work has gone in to his training and preparation from both Rory and his coach, Neil Robertson (Lead Coach of Men’s Artistic), and these results are well-deserved recognition of their commitment and dedication.”
The results are especially pleasing as Rory had suffered a shoulder injury in October 2015, and there has been a long and frustrating period where his training and ability to use his shoulder on certain apparatus has been markedly compromised.