Synchros hit high notes with magical Free Routine

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10th August 2012

The Team GB synchronised swimmers brought the curtain down on their debut in the Olympic team competition with a spell-binding Free Routine to finish sixth.

The Brits were lying sixth overnight after an encouraging 87.300 for their Technical Routine but raised their game to score 88.140 for the Free, securing their position on 175.440 points.

The support of the crowd really gave us that extra buzz when we were swimming and everyone enjoyed it.

It was a spectacular finish to the competition for the British women, nearly a point clear of their score to finish ninth at last year’s World Championships in Shanghai.

The podium positions remained the same as after the Technical Routine as defending champions Russia claimed top spot (197.030) ahead of China (194.010) and Spain (193.120).

But having held of continental champions Egypt (155.960) and Australia (154.930) respectively, Commonwealth silver medallist Jenna Randall admitted the Brits had achieved what they had set out to in finishing sixth.

“Team Free is the main team event so it was fantastic to start it off,” said Randall.

“Having the support of the crowd there was amazing. It really gave us that extra buzz when we were swimming and everyone really enjoyed it.

“We were aiming for top six for the team. That was our aim coming into these Games so we’re really pleased to have secured that place.”

Having been granted a host nation spot to compete in the Team event for the first time at Olympic level, the Brits have been working with renowned choreographer Stephan Miermont to produce a Free Routine worthy of closing the synchronised swimming competition at London 2012.

And the British women hit the nail on the head with their lively Peter Pan routine, leaving the 17,000-strong Aquatics Centre crowd in raptures with their original and emotive interpretation of Tinkerbell, pirates, the crocodile and Peter Pan himself.

Nobody has ever done a split stand stack like that so it was really pleasing that it worked and set the tone for the performance.

Importantly, the judges were also impressed, awarding 43.780 for technical merit and 44.360 for artistic impression.

The British team have also been working with former figure skaters Robin Cousins and Frankie Poultney and their influence could be seen in the difficulty and execution of a number of lifts during the routine.

“Our first lift is very unique to us,” said Randall. “Nobody has ever done a split stand stack with the stacker just holding on her hands so it was really pleasing that it worked and it definitely set the tone for the performance.

“We wanted to do a British theme this year for our home Olympics. We decided to go for Peter Pan because everyone loves and recognises it. Everyone knows the story.”

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