Penalty costs gymnast a world medal

MATT RICHENS
Last updated 08:39 29/03/2014

Christchurch gymnast Courtney McGregor, 15, performing a handspring front salto half twist.

courtney mcgregor
WORLD CLASS: Courtney MacGregor, one of the first New Zealand gymnasts to make a World Cup final.

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A penalty has cost Christchurch’s Courtney McGregor a medal at the Gymnastics World Cup in Qatar, but the 15-year-old still exceeded expectations.

McGregor and fellow Christchurch School of Gymnastics athlete Charlotte Sullivan yesterday became the first two New Zealand female gymnasts to make a final in a World Cup event.

McGregor qualified second in the vault final while Sullivan was qualified seventh for the floor final.

McGregor’s first vault scored 8.475 and with a difficulty score of 5.800, she picked up 14.275.

But a 0.3 point penalty for stepping out with her landing cost her.

Her second vault, a 13.450, gave her an overall average score of 13.712. Had she not stepped out, she would have scored 13.863 and finished third.

While there was disappointment in the penalty, McGregor still became the most successful New Zealand female gymnast at a World Cup.

‘‘Courtney was awesome today, she made us all proud,’’ New Zealand and Christchurch School of Gymnastics coach Svetlana Sazonova said.

The event was won by London Olympic medallist Larisa Iordache of Romania.Sullivan competes in the floor final overnight tonight New Zealand time.

The pair are both hopeful of representing New Zealand at the Commonwealth Games in Scotland in July and August.

Their next event is the Pacific Rim Championships in Vancouver next month.

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- The Press

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