Tonbridge's acrobatic Tigers are burning bright for Euros
by Andy Tong | 21st August 2019
FOUR members of the Tigers Gymnastics Club in Tonbridge have been selected to represent Great Britain for the first time.
Twelve-year-old Bea Henderson has been picked for the European Championships for Acrobatic Gymnastics in Holon, Israel in October.
She will be performing in the 12-18 Mixed Pair category with club mate Hector Kinghorn.
Fellow Tigers Olivia Hossenboccus, 17, Amy Rowe, 14, and Fran Arnell, 12, will also be earning their national stripes when they take part in the 12-18 Women’s Group.
The club, based at the Jump-In Trampoline Park on Morley Road, has a remarkable pedigree on the international stage it opened in Tonbridge three years ago.
Hector, 15, has already won a European title with Sam Large in 2015.
He also took home a silver medal from the World Championships a year later.
And Sam was crowned world champion with Sammi Nassman last year.
Chris Rogers, director at Tigers in Tonbridge, said: “Our gymnasts are understandably overcome with happiness.
“It was a pleasure as their coach to be able to deliver the news myself and perhaps one of the highlights of my career thus far, given the hard work from the gymnasts and the team at Tigers.”
He added: “All of them have been at Tigers from when we started in July 2016 with the exception of Fran, who joined us in 2017.
“This is the beginning of many great things to come from Tigers, we continue to go from strength to strength.”
“Last year when we created the men’s pair world champions, we felt it important for the next stage to be making it possible for more of our gymnasts to reach that level.”
At the British Championships in Liverpool last month the Tigers team had already produced a ‘landmark achievement’.
Hector and Bea faced tough competition against the world champions from Wakefield but managed to finish in second place.
Olivia, Amy and Fran also came second in the womens’ competition, only missing out on the title due to a height penalty.
Chris said: “They have had a very steep uphill journey against a very high number of amazing women’s groups from across the UK, improving vastly over the last few months.”
The gymnasts train for 14 hours per week and their attention to detail is painstaking.
“It’s difficult to say how long it takes to get the routine perfect as we are always striving for making improvements,” said Chris.
“But what I can say is we have made unbelievable progress in the last year.”