Caitlin Rooskrantz Wins South Africa’s First International Gymnastics Gold Medal

Caitlin Rooskrantz Wins South Africa’s First International Gymnastics Gold Medal

Original Publications: IOL
Date: Sep 25, 2019

Cape Town – Caitlin Rooskrantz from Johannesburg has made history by becoming the first South African to win a gold medal at an international gymnastics competition.

Competing at the FIG Challenge Cup in Szombathely, Hungary, the 17-year-old scooped a gold medal in the uneven bars, ahead of British and Spanish competitors.

“I have worked my entire career for that moment of true success on one of the biggest international stages, so when I did the routine of my life and realised I had won, I was totally overwhelmed but so proud of myself,” Rooskrantz said.

Rooskrantz boasts an impressive array of accolades to her name, as the 2018 national champion and also the current African champion on bars.

Ilse Pelser, Rooskrantz’s coach, described her as one of the hardest working athletes she had ever worked with.

“She is a fighter and has come back from quite a few injuries to achieve great success in her career thus far. I’m excited about her future and feel like this is only the beginning of bigger things to come,” she said.

Rooskrantz said she started gymnastics at age 6 years after her family friends recommended it as she was always jumping on the furniture.

The Grade 12 learner from Parktown Girls’ High said she worked hard and tried to focus on her school work and gymnastics.

“Having achieved this at such a young age is exciting because I feel I still have many good years of good gymnastics left and I’m hoping to build on this achievement to go on to even greater heights and more international gold medals,” she said.

Rooskrantz will soon leave to compete at the Stuttgart World Championships with the hope of qualifying for the Tokyo Olympics next year.

Pelser said the road to the championship wasn’t an easy one. Between an ankle injury scare last month, preparing for her preliminary exams and the disappointment of not going to the All Africa Games, Rooskrantz had still persevered to come this far.

“We work extremely hard to make everyone proud and to pave the way for future gymnasts, and we will continue to give it our best shot,” Pelser said.

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