Samantha vaults opposition at regional champs
SOMETIMES a little motivation can go a long way.
Just ask Hervey Bay gymnast Samantha Jankovic.
Fuelled by the disappointment of missing the Sunshine Coast Regional Challenge Team last year, the 11-year-old turned in a stellar performance to be crowned level six regional champion.
Thirteen girls from Wide Bay Gymnastics Club made the trip to Maroochydore for the regional championships, with five of them qualifying for the state titles next month.
Level six gymnasts Katelyn Riphagen and Danielle Penrose performed strongly to book their spots, while level four girls Danielle Sankey and Denya Hopkins will be making their debuts in Brisbane.
But it was Jankovic who excelled at vault, beam and floor to take overall honours.
"I was very excited and also amazed," the Kawungan State School student said.
"I've trained a lot harder and tried to focus a lot more.
"I did well on every apparatus, which was the best thing."
Jankovic got second on vault and finished 10th overall in last year's state titles, but felt she was in good shape for a top-six finish this year.
She was also thrilled to be picked to represent Sunshine Coast in the regional teams' challenge.
Wide Bay Gymnastics secretary Vickie Riphagen said the club was proud of all their athletes' achievements at regionals and anticipates some strong performances in Brisbane next month.
"From the competitions we've been at this year, we're expecting some good results at states," she said.
"If their nerves are calm and they go in confident then they've got the skills to pull them (routines) off.
"It all comes down to how the perform on the day."
Riphagen added the club was ecstatic to hear former member Lauren Sankey, who now trains in Bundaberg, finish second in level seven in the Central Queensland regional championships.
Samantha Jankovic crowned regional champion. Danielle Penrose 4th overall with 1st on floor. Katelyn Riphagen 6th overall with outstanding floor and beam routines.
Level 4 over 10
Danielle Sankey 5th overall. Denya Hopkins qualified for state championships. Maddy Beal 2nd on floor. Jessica Thomson was competitive against the other clubs.
Level 4 under 10
Ella McConville 4th overall. Emmily Lingard 5th overall and passed her level 4 qualification.
Level 3 over 9
Maddy Auld-Wade 8th.
Level 3 under 9
Lacey Brown 4th overall with 1st on floor. Zoe Butler 7th overall. Jana Mostert 9th overall.
Samantha Jankovic, Katelyn Riphagen, Danielle Penrose (level six), Danielle Sankey and Denya Hopkins (level four) qualified for state titles.
Samantha Jankovic and Danielle Penrose and Danielle Sankey were also selected for Sunshine Coast Regional Challenge Teams.