Jumping for Jamaica

8:27 PM

Toni-Ann Williams. Image from United Gymnastics.

Jamaica's hopes at the 2011 World Artistic Gymnastics Championships will be with 15-year old Toni-Ann Williams and her training partner Jadia Lawrence. According to the article below, both girls train under Mladen Stefanov at United Gymnastix in Maryland, USA, however Jaida Lawrence is actually trained at New England Gymnastics Express. Williams competes Level 10 and at the 2011 Junior Olympic National Championships finished third all around and won the gold on the Balance Beam and silver on the Floor Exercise. Good luck to both girls. I am sure that they will do Jamaica proud.

From the article on the Jamaica Observer website:

Ranked as a one of the top 30 gymnasts in the United States, Williams says she hopes her participation will inspire other gymnasts living in Jamaica, the states and elsewhere to represent Jamaica and qualify for the Olympic Games.

A robust, five-foot one-inch athlete, Williams added: "I want to show that gymnastics is not only about running, flipping and recreation. You can actually go somewhere with it and be part of the international world."

"When I was younger, I was 'hyper' and gymnastics was a way to keep me occupied," she added.

Training for 10 years and currently at 25 hours a week, Williams showed her worth at the Junior Olympic National Championships earlier this year when she won on the beam, was second on the floor and third all-around.

Though now a Maryland State, Regional and US Junior Olympic National team member, Williams allegiance to Jamaica -- birthplace of her parents -- means she will have to sever ties with the American association.

Read more: http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/sports/15-y-o-to-represent-Ja-at-global-gymnastics-champs_9555112#ixzz1WcAVIFyr

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