Routines by Canadian gymnasts highlight IGA meet
Ellie Black, a Canadian Olympic gymnast and five-time Pan-Am gold medallist, and her teammate on the national squad, Hugh Smith, will show off their new routines Saturday as part of the Island Gymnastics Academy’s annual meet in Charlottetown.
Black and Smith start warmups at 4:30 p.m., at the Delta Prince Edward Hotel. They are part of the event, which begins Friday and runs until Sunday.
The meet will draw more than 500 high-performance gymnasts representing 14 clubs in more than 24 categories from across Canada.
IGA administrator Lea Rand said the combination of the unique venue and the high quality of competition is the main attraction for competitors and audiences.
“The venue has undergone some major renovations and updates over the last year and we are seeing this competition continue to grow every year,” Rand said. “We’re constantly complimented by coaches, judges and athletes at how professional and flawless this competition moves and we’re so delighted that our little club from Prince Edward Island has built such a wonderful event.”
Black, a Halifax native, helped Canada’s 2012 Olympic Team to its best-ever, fifth-place finish in the team event. Black was also Canada’s leading scorer on the vault exercise where she made it to event finals and placed eighth in the world.
She finished ninth all-around at the 2014 world championships, posting Canada’s bestever result in the event. At the 2015 Pan Am Games, Black won five gold medals, including an individual all-around (Canada’s first in the event since 1979).
She’s currently training for the 2016 Olympic Games later this year in Brazil.
Smith, who lives in Dartmouth, N.S., has competed in three Pan Ams since 2007 and was a national gold medal winner at the 2012, 2013 and 2015 championships. He also represented Canada at the 2014 nationals in Nanning, China.
A longtime member of the Canadian national team, Smith is hoping to secure a spot on Canada’s Olympic team.
Schedule and more at www.islandgymnasticsacademy.com.
Ellie Black will perform her routine Saturday in Charlottetown.