Clara James *Photo supplied
Clara James *Photo supplied

Gymnasts Clara James and Danielle Wall wrapped up their Junior Pan American Championship on Saturday in Aracaju, Brazil.

The young ladies started on balance beam and both were debuting new, international level skills. 

Despite a fall on her front tuck salto, James nailed her backhandspring back tuck series and finished on a high note for an impressive 10.6. Danielle Wall fought for her new side somi but came off the beam, and then had an uncharacteristic fall on her dismount. Her 8.676 reflected a 2.0 deduction for the falls. The beam proved a challenge for all of the gymnasts in our squad, with everyone taking one or two falls on risky skills.

Moving to their final event, floor exercise, both lit up the arena with their smiles and playful dance, scoring 10.533 and 10.867 respectively. “We had several compliments after the competition on their floor routine presentation and personality. It was a great way to finish up,” said coach Mandi Baughman.

Overall, Danielle finished 35th with a 39.268 and Clara finished 38th with a 36.766.

Head coach Duke Nelligan said: “We’re glad for the opportunity but we know we have a lot of work ahead of us. 

Our vaulting shows that we’re leg strong, our new skills on beam show we’re willing to work the more difficult skills, bars is a work in progress, and on floor, we shone.” n