HAWAII is a popular holiday destination for many people.
But what about having the chance to enjoy the beauty of the islands while competing in a sport you love? For some lucky Bathurst and Orange juniors they get to experience that adventure of a lifetime.
A team of 13 gymnasts, comprised of 10 Bathurst Aspire Gymnastics 2795 and three Orange Central West Gymnastics competitors, have landed in Hawaii to take compete against International opposition.
Shayla Winwood-Smith, Isabel King, Michaela Doungmanee,Sophie Dunbar, Aimee Nicholls, Eve Twohill, Roxy George, Heidi Twohill, Emma Jones and Ebony Pender will be representing Aspire while Olivia Buckerfield, Emily Rhodes and Regan Molly will be flying the CWG banner.
Aspire’s Sophie Godleman and Sarah Pender along with CWG’s Madeline Waters are the coaches who have spent months preparing their students for the journey, and are accompanying the group in their travels.
“It’s a bit of a relief that it’s all sorted now and we’re able to go over there and enjoy it,” Goldleman said, just hours before Wednesday night’s departure from Sydney.
“The hard work that we’ve put into this trip will definitely be worth it.
“We’ll have four of our girls competing at two of the competitions we’re going to while everyone will be taking part in the second one.”
On Friday local time the first of those competitions, Gymnastics In Paradise, will take place at Aiea, north west of Honolulu.
Keep up to date with the latest sports news by clicking here.
That gives the Central West group’s level six and seven competitors – Doungmanee, Nicholls, Buckerfield and Rhodes – the opportunity to take on skilled competitors from across the globe.
From there the Bathurst and Orange travellers will enjoy some picturesque sightseeing before taking part in the Aloha Gymfest starting on January 18.
“For the last six months we’ve been doing extra training on the weekend,” Godleman said.
“We also did a lot of training at different venues to get our team used to being in a different environment.
“We had sessions at Springwood, Rooty Hill and one at Newcastle at the gymnastics academy which they took a lot away from.”
Godleman said the trip is set to be an amazing experience both in and out of the gymnasium.
“They will be throwing a picnic for everything following the Gymfest,” she said.
"They’re going to compete against people from Japan, Canada, New Zealand, Australia and the UK.
“They’re all really interested to see the routines from the international competitors and how they compare.
“We’d like to thank Kennards Hire, Simplot, Mick Dunbar Electrical, Drake’s Bulk Haulage, Raine and Horne and Prestige Embroidery for their support.”