GYMNASTS at an Upper Beeding school brought a 14-year championship reign to an end when they claimed victory in an annual schools competition.
Students from The Towers Convent, in Henfield Road, won the overall title in the West Sussex Junior Gymnastics competition, held at Davison High School in Worthing.
They took the title from the hosts, bringing Davison’s 14-year winning streak to an end and winning by a convincing 26 points against 11 other schools.
Chloe Ellman-Baker, one of the Towers’ team, said the win had been particularly rewarding as they had been competing against gymnasts from an elite club who perform at county level.
She was part of the team who won second place in the group floor section.
The five girls in the group apparatus section also came second, as did Bella and Sofija in the pair floor section.
Head teacher Clare Trelfa said: “The icing on the cake was the first place position awarded to Ellie and Francesca.
“The team’s overall excellence won them first place in the whole competition.
“Commiserations to Davison High School, whose 14-year winning streak came to an end.”
The Towers gymnasts had prepared their routines and practised for several weeks for the gym competition, entering all four sections on the day – pair apparatus, group apparatus, pair floor and group floor.
The girls were coached both at school and during half term by Miss Kat O’Neill and Miss Cora Gillies, supported by two year-11 prefects and dancers, Charlotte and Aimee.
Mrs Trelfa said: “Each girl demonstrated real commitment by turning up for every practice and striving to perform a perfect routine, recognising that the standard of gym improves every year.
“The day of the competition dawned with parents and older girls busy plaiting hair and calming the gymnasts’ nerves.
“The Towers is extremely proud of the girls for their commitment, work ethic and professionalism.”
Chloe, who has been involved with the competition for several years, including providing the music for the Towers team in the past, said the competition grew harder every year but they had worked hard to improve.