The British Olympic Association (BOA) has today named nine synchronised swimmers as officially selected to compete for Team GB at the London 2012 Olympic Games.
The selected athletes include Jenna Randall and Olivia Federici (nee Allison) who will compete in the duet event. London will be their second Games after finishing 14th at the last Olympics in Beijing. The other seven athletes selected, including Jenna’s younger sister Asha, will all be making their Olympic debuts.
This is the first time that Team GB will feature a full synchronised swimming team. The sport has enjoyed a successful rise up the world rankings since 2007, when the GB High Performance Centre was set up in Aldershot, with the duet and team both now ranked within the top ten nations in the world.
The selected athletes are: (Click names to view full profile)
Yvette Baker, Birmingham, 20
Katie Clark, Reading, 18
Katie Dawkins, Bristol, 23
Olivia Federici, Portsmouth, 22
Jennifer Knobbs, Aldershot/Toronto, 22
Vicki Lucass, Yateley, 21
Asha Randall, Ascot, 22
Jenna Randall, Ascot, 23
Katie Skelton, Reading, 24
The addition of the synchronised swimmers brings the total number of athletes officially selected to Team GB for London 2012 to 76 across six disciplines: athletics – marathon, boxing, canoe slalom, sailing, swimming and synchronised swimming.
The athletes were formally nominated to the BOA for selection to Team GB by British Swimming, the National Governing Body for aquatics in the UK.
Team GB Chef de Mission Andy Hunt said:
“We are delighted to welcome a full complement of nine synchronised swimmers to Team GB for the London 2012 Olympic Games. The synchronised swimmers train incredibly hard and, under the expert guidance of Biz Price, have demonstrated consistent progress over the last four years.
“This group of athletes have recorded some impressive results in both the duet and team events recently and I am sure they will grasp the opportunity offered by the London 2012 Games with both hands and demonstrate their presence at the top table of the sport with their performances.”
Synchronised Swimming National Performance Director Biz Price:
“I’m pleased to confirm the nine athletes that we have nominated to take to the Olympic Games in London. It will be the first time that the country has fielded a full team to take part in both events. Since the opening of the High Performance Centre all of our athletes have been training for this Olympic opportunity and 2016.
“The nine athletes have worked really hard towards qualifying for the home Olympics and I know that this is an opportunity they will value and learn from.
“Jenna [Randall] and Olivia [Federici] will be competing at their second consecutive Olympics and their experience has helped the rest of the team deal with competing at high level international competitions.
“The Duet has improved their world ranking since Beijing and I am confident that they will put in a competitive performance in London. The Team has risen through the world rankings and I believe their hard work will pay off. Our Targets are set high based on our previous results and if we achieve them we will be well on track for 2016.”
“It's fantastic knowing that I will be going to the Olympics this year. I can’t wait to hear the home crowd and know that everyone is behind us. We got a taste of it at the test event and to think that was only a quarter full is really exciting.
“The Olympics is going to be a great opportunity for us to show the British public how great our sport is and hopefully get more young children joining in and experiencing the diversity of synchronised swimming.”
Olivia Federici (nee Allison):
“I feel privileged to be part of Team GB and the synchronised swimming team that will go to the Olympics and compete in front of the home crowd Being selected for the squad is proof that all those early mornings, very long hours in the pool, and pushing through those painful training moments are all worth it.
“Now I am looking forward to the last stages of preparation before finally competing and doing an amazing performance at the London 2012 Olympic Games.”
“I'm so excited to be selected to be part of Team GB. It means the world to me to compete at an Olympics and even better that it's a home Olympics as the support is going to be incredible.
“To compete for your country at an Olympics is something I have dreamt of and I can’t wait to wear the kit and make my friends and family proud.”
“To be able to compete at an Olympic Games is the ultimate goal for any athlete and for it to be in your home country is just a once and a life time opportunity. I'm so excited that I have been officially selected as a member of Team GB to compete for my country in synchronised swimming.
“My selection means so much to me and I can't wait to hear the home crowd and show Great Britain everything we have been working on for the past five years. This is a great opportunity for the public who haven't really seen synchro before and don't know much about it to be able to witness the skill and diversity of the sport.”