The Key City Gymnastics Club will be sending three young gymnasts to the BC Winter Games this week. The three girls, Taylor Johnstone, 14, and sisters Emma Lim, 10, and Kayley Lim, 13, left to the Games Wednesday night.
All three have been doing gymnastics pretty much since they could crawl, Emma and Kayley at the Cranbrook Club. Taylor has been at the club for the past five years.
Kayley said she is mostly looking forward to the experience and being there for the events.
“You get a really good idea of what big competitions like Nationals and Westerns are like,” Kayley said.
Taylor said she is looking forward to the overall experience, meeting people and seeing other gymnasts in higher levels.
“I would say experience too, because it’s like a really big competition,” said Emma.
All three have been working hard in preparation for the Games.
“Mostly we’re kind of perfecting our routines and just tweaking them a bit,” Kayley explained. “We have a routine for each event, and then vault we do whatever routine we’re working on. There are four routines. It’s hard to explain, but everyone’s is different.”
Kayley has also been giving the other girls an idea of what the competition and atmosphere will be like, since it is her second time to the Games.
She said her favourite part of being at those games was seeing the older kids compete, though she admitted it was a bit overwhelming since she was just 11 at the time.
Head Coach Garry Ricks said the Games are an experience for the girls, especially the two who haven’t been yet.
“They are new to the Games experience and the multi sport, so I think that whole atmosphere is going to be exciting for them,” Ricks said. “I think they all have a strong event that they could do well in.”
He said this year is one of the stronger Zone 1 teams that they’ve sent and three gymnasts from Nelson will also be joining them.
“It’s really different when you go to a multi sport, versus just a competition,” he said. “They’ve all done well in their categories throughout last year.”
He said this will be somewhere between his 17th and 20th Games as a coach. The Games used to be held every year up until 1997.
“I think it’s about my 18th games,” he said. “When you’re bringing new kids in it’s always exciting to see what they think of it. I think if they concentrate and put all the distractions of the games behind, I think they’ll do really well.”