Hucknall’s Ellie Downie has claimed a hat-trick of gold medals at the British Gymnastics Championships in Liverpool.
The 17-year-old, who competed at the Rio Olympics with her sister Becky last year, won her first title on Saturday in the all-around competition with a score of 55.350.
That followed a complicated routine which included double twisting double back somersault on floor, and even with a fall on the bars she still emerged victorious. Then, on Sunday, she added two more gold medals in the vault and bars disciplines.
In the vault she took the title with a score of 14.437, while she overcame her error on the bars the day before to score 14.600 and again secure top spot.
Sister Becky took the bronze medal in the bars with a score of 14.025, hindered by a fall.
Following her all-around victory, Ellie said: “I’ve worked so hard for this. To get back to full fitness hasn’t been easy but it just shows the hard work has paid off.
“I was really pleased with my floor. It’s been a bit up and down in training this week but to get it out there and perform it; I really got in to it, and I think the crowd did as well.”
After securing two more golds on Sunday, she added: “I came in really prepared so to win the all-around as well as vault and bars is amazing.
“Winning the all-around was just amazing, then coming back the next day and winning vault and bars was even better – so I’m really happy with the weekend.
“It’s been a lot of hard work, a lot of fitness and just trying to get back to how I was, but I’ve enjoyed coming back and I’ve been more determined than ever since Rio, working really, really, hard.
“Rio was obviously great for the sport but for me it didn’t really go to plan and it was hard to stay motivated after coming home, so for me this is a great achievement to come back and win.
“I’ve come close at the Nationals twice before and not quite got there so it’s a really big boost for the year ahead. I think I performed pretty well although I know there is still a lot to work on.
“The sport is such a big thing right now and being part of that team in Rio – even if things didn’t go exactly to plan for me personally – just showed that we belong at that level and there’s no reason why I can’t go on to achieve the same myself.”