County Durham gymnast Amy Tinkler returned from Rio De Janeiro this week after taking part in a gruelling training camp to prepare for this summer’s olympics.
The 16-year-old, who trains at South Durham Gymnastics Club in Spennymoor, travelled to Brazil with seven other 2016 hopefuls to get a taste of what it would be like to compete in the Olympic games this July.
The camp gave them the chance to train alongside the Brazilian national team in the warm up hall for Rio 2016.
Speaking about how she felt after the trip, Amy said: “It was amazing. I’m pretty excited for the next few months, I’m excited to be back competing in front of a home crowd again over the next couple of months as we start the Olympic trials.”
Amy has been in the Team GB squad for a number of years, and the trials to choose the Rio squad will begin over the next couple of months.
She has already made history with the team by competing in the National Championships in Glasgow last winter.
Although her main specialities are floor and vault, Amy believes consistency is key for her to make the final Rio team.
Luckily, it was not all work and no play for the squad, they got to take in the sights of Rio and visit the Olympic village, an experience which Amy says was very special.
She said: “It was very motivational to be there and you get a feel for what it will be like in the summer. At that point I think it really sunk in how close to the games are.”
Sophie Willis, a coach and fellow gymnast at South Durham has trained with Amy for years. She said: “We’re all so proud of her. It’s an amazing achievement and would mean so much to her and to the whole club. We’ll obviously be cheering her on the whole way through.”