Gaudry draws on London lessons
14 August 2016
GYMNASTICS: Blake Gaudry drew on “lessons from London” to steer himself to 13th place in the men’s individual trampoline, after he had to overcome a false start in his second routine.
Gaudry, who was in fifth position after his opening compulsory routine, fell agonisingly short (2.21 points) of qualifying in a top eight spot when he had to re-start his second routine and finished with a score 2.5 points lower than he had been aiming for. Had he nailed that score he would have qualified eighth.
In his Olympic debut in London in 2012 he was ninth after the first routine, then fell on his seventh skill in his second routine and finished 13th overall.
“In a tough situation I wasn’t able to fight through in London,” said Gaudry.
“Four years of experience helped me. I was probably in a similar situation really (today); just as bad actually.
“But I was able to pull it together and finish it off. I was really happy with that.
“Even though it’s 13th place (again) I feel like I have improved since London and I’m very much a better competitor.”
Gaudry had a sensational start with a score of 49.525 in his compulsory routine – 2.5 degree of difficulty (DD), 28.2 execution and 18.825 flight time – which put him in a strong fifth position going into the second qualifying routine.
“Going into this competition I knew it would be very tight; that I could easily have done the best routines I could have done and still miss out,” said Gaudry.
“After the first routine I was really happy to see the scores and the placing and going into the second routine I wanted to do a similar thing.
“Unfortunately, I started doing bounces and didn’t feel like it was where I wanted to be, so I stopped and regained my composure. Sometimes that happens.”
Gaudry said memories of his fall in London when he kept bouncing after a similar shaky started prompted him to stop today within the one-minute re-start (without penalty) period.
“That was the lesson I learnt … the same thing happened in London and it didn’t go well,” Gaudry said.
“I stopped and sort of took a few breaths, went through what I wanted to do in my routine and started again.
“The start of the routine was quite good actually. I was really happy with the first three skills or so.
“After that I made a few mistakes with my shoulders and started to travel around the tramp quite a bit.
“At that point knew it wasn’t going to be a routine that I was hoping for. I just wanted to pull it together and finish it off … and that’s what I did.”
Gaudry finished with a score of 55.925 – 16.9 DD, 21.9 execution and 17.125 flight time – for an overall score of 105.450. To make the final he needed to beat eighth-placed New Zealander Dylan Schmidt who qualified with 107.660.
The gold medal was won by Uladzislau Hancharou of Belarus, ahead of China’s Dong Dong and Gao Lei.
It was the first gold medal for Belarus at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games and the first medal of any kind for Belarus in trampoline gymnastics.
Meanwhile, the Australian Team has one competitor still to compete with rhythmic gymnast Danielle Prince performing on Friday, August 19.