Star Eccles goes fourth
Published 29 Aug 2012 09:30 0 Comments
JOANNE Eccles successfully retained her World individual female vaulting champion title in Le Mans, France this weekend, with Joanne alongside sister Hannah also winning Silver in the Pas De Deux.
Showing her consistency Joanne led throughout the four rounds of her individual female class and won by a comfortable margin rarely seen at championships (nearly 0.5), finishing on 8.499. Rikki Laumann from Denmark finished 2nd, and in 3rd was Sarah Kay from Germany.
Joanne was vaulting on her own WH Bentley, lunged by her father John Eccles; this was Bentleys 50th international competition.
The win takes Joanne's winning streak to 4 consecutive championships, now being double European (2009, 2011) and double World champion (2010,2012).
With her fourth title in a row she is now level with Germany's Tanja Benedetto who was the top female vaulter at all championships between 1994 and 1997. Only two ladies in vaulting history - Nadia Zülow (GER/6) and Silke Bernhard (GER/5) - have collected more titles.
Eccles, a recently qualified dentist, was thrilled with her success.
The 23-year old said, "Some years ago my aim was to win a medal. Now I've been able to stay at the top for four years."
Joanne's younger sister, Hannah Eccles, also impressed to finish in 8th place, also on WH Bentley; this was her first top ten placing at a World Championships, whilst Lucy Phillips finished 16th on her own Pitucelli.
In the Pas de Deux competition the Eccles sisters went on to
win Silver, in a very closely fought class, with the top six pairs all
producing an extremely high level of vaulting.
The two favourites from USA finished in 3rd and 4th but it was an Austrian pair, L. Wacha and J. Lindner, that took the top honours.
The Eccles sisters produced a very smooth fluent routine on WH Bentley, to finish second, adding to the Silver medal they won at the European Championships
This article appeared in Alloa & Hillfoots Advertiser 29 Aug 12
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