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Glacier Gymnastics trio set to represent Kootenays at BC Winter Games

By Contributor
February 5th, 2024

Three local Glacier Gymnasts qualified to compete at the upcoming 2024 BC Winter Games later this month in Quesnel.

Rebecka van Hellemond, Anika Denkovski and Emerson Mandseth took the top three spots at the Trials which took place December 16 at the Glacier Gymnastics Club in Nelson.

A total of nine gymnasts from the Kootenay Zone competed for one of the six spots on the Zone 1 BC Winter Games Team.

Rebecka van Hellemond, 13, won the event and also captured the gold medals for bars and beam and bronze on floor.

Anika Denkovski, 14, was close behind in second place, with a silver medal performance on bars and bronze on beam while 14-year-old Emerson Mandseth rounded out the podium in third place, with a silver medal on floor and beam.

The Glacier coaching team was a bit nervous heading into this competition because all the gymnasts had to move up a level this season in order to compete at the Trials.

“We were unsure how the girls would compare to the other Zone Level 7 gymnasts”, said Head Coach, Sandra Long.

“All three girls worked really hard over the last four months, learning new skills to add into their routines.

“They did an amazing job overcoming adversity, fear and other challenges, in order to get onto the team,”  Long added.

Everyone on the team continues to focus on improving their routines for the BC Winter Games competition in Quesnel, Feb 22-25.

“We are proud of the girls for making the team,” said Long. “They have returned to training inspired and motivated to increase their scoring potential.”

The level of gymnastics at the BC Winter Games is very high and the team will be competing against gymnasts that train four to eight hours more per week.

Long says that all three girls are up for the challenge.

“They are dedicated to do their best at the Games. They are an accomplished team and there is a very good chance for them to return home to Nelson with 1 or more BC Winter Games Medals.”

The BC Winter and BC Summer Games are British Columbia’s biennial celebration of sport and community.

Since 1978, the BC Games have taken place in 38 communities and involved over 350,000 participants and volunteers and thousands more as spectators and supporters.

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