1997 British ChampionshipsHeathrow Gymnastics Club entered a new era by staging and participating in the British Sports Aerobics Championships. This is a new sport that has mushroomed in popularity in its competitive form and is frequently to be seen on satellite television. The championships were watched by 200 spectators as 70 of Britain's best performed their new routines. It is a sport requiring aerobic fitness, dance, choreographic skill and gymnastic agility. (it is therefore no surprise that certain retired gymnasts have found this their forte. The event had additional honour and prestige at stake as the winners were assured selection for the GB team at the World Championships in italy next year.
The Club won three titles including Junior British Champion Kerry Scotts from Bedfont who wooed the crowd with her incredible vivacity. The women's Trio of Victoria Ford, Sarah Hamm and Joanne Stephens snatched victory from the competition favourites for Heathrow's second Gold. Finally Natalia Ilienko who was World Gymnastics Floor Champion in 1981 with the Soviet team still showed her world class flair with her new sport. Natalia who has been coaching at Heathrow for 5 years must now wait to see if her British citizenship application will allow her to represent Great Britain. Heathrow Sports Aerobics Coach Gary Jarvis said "I am overwhelmed with the progress and results the team has achieved with 9 months of hard work. We are very proud to have provided further sporting opportunities and continued the success of Heathrow Gymnastics Club. Heathrow's Nina Lodge and Sam Reitveld achieved Bronze in the Senior and Junior Women's events. Norman Perry won Silver in the Men's individual.
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