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Wigan to Host Biggest Event in UK Gymnastics Calendar
Friday 20th October, 2006

Wigan to Host Biggest Event in UK Gymnastics Calendar
Current British Champion Ross Brewer.

Robin Park Arena and Sports Centre, Wigan, will host the British Men's Artistic Gymnastics Championships over the weekend of 4th and 5th November.

Young people from across Wigan Borough and beyond are being invited to witness Britain's largest and most prestigious gymnastics event of 2006 for free. Children aged 16 and under will qualify for free tickets if they are accompanied by an adult.

Held annually since 1896, the British Men's Championships is coming to Robin Park for the fourth consecutive year and will feature three times British Champion and Commonwealth medallist Ross Brewer from Sutton. Looking to take his crown will be Danny Lawrence (South Essex) and Ryan Bradley (Earls), who each have a vast array of exciting skills and the burning ambition to be Champion of Great Britain.

Event organiser Ben Murphy from British Gymnastics, said, "We are anticipating a really exciting weekend and hopefully a lot of young people will come along and take an interest in the sport in the long-term. The Men's Championships are always a close run affair and seeing the exciting somersaults and strength of these athletes live is an awesome experience. This year we can increase our viewing audience with the live webcast going directly into people's homes at Sunday lunchtime."

Saturday will attract competitors for the three traditional titles, British Youth Champion (15-16), British Junior Champion (17-18) and the coveted senior title of Men's Champion of Great Britain. Spectators will also see the nation's youngest gymnastic talents competing in the British Under-12 Championships on Sunday morning. The Under-14 Championships will give potential 2012 Olympic candidates their chance to impress the selectors.

An exciting new element to the championships, the British Masters Finals, will see the top eight gymnasts competing to become the apparatus king. The event will also be broadcast live over the internet from 1.30pm Sunday at www.british-gymnastics.org.

The Masters will feature Commonwealth Games Pommel Horse Champion Louis Smith. Louis is a formidable expert on this apparatus with two Junior European Gold medals to his credit.

Mike Lea, Wigan Leisure and Culture Trust's Gymnastics Development Officer, said, "This is a great opportunity for young people and their families to come along and see some great athletes in action for free. Both Wigan Leisure and Culture Trust and British Gymnastics are determined to get more and more young people involved in what is a graceful, powerful and dynamic sport. As we approach the Olympic Games in 2012, it would be great to witness gymnasts from the borough competing with a Great Britain flag on their chest."

In addition to the main events, on Friday 3rd November Robin Park will open its doors to young gymnastic enthusiasts and novices alike to witness some of the nation's finest gymnasts (including some of the GB National Squad) close at hand and to have the opportunity to try out the apparatus for themselves. Last year over 250 school children took part and anyone wishing to attend should contact Mike Lea on 01942 404952 for further details.

To purchase tickets for this event please contact the ticketweb hotline on 08700 600 100 or visit www.british-gymnastics.org. Tickets can also be obtained via Robin Park Sports Centre on 01942 828550. Tickets are free to under-16s but must be obtained in conjunction with the purchase of an adult ticket. Adult day tickets are priced at 8 (4 for concessions) or weekend tickets are priced at just 12 (6 concessions).

Competition Start Times:

Under-16s: 11.20 am
Under-18s and Seniors: 2.50 pm

Under-12s: 9:55 am
British Masters: 1:50 pm
Under-14s: 4:30 pm

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