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Synchro swimmers selected for London 2012

8th May 2012

TeamGB will feature a full synchronised swimming team for the first time after the British Olympic Association (BOA) confirmed nine British synchronised swimmers had been selected for the London 2012 Olympic Games.

Jenna Randall and Olivia Federici (nee Allison) will compete in the duet event for the second consecutive Games, having finished 14th in Beijing four years ago.

I am sure these athletes will grasp the opportunity offered by the London 2012 Games with both hands and demonstrate their presence at the top table of the sport.

The other seven athletes selected, including Jenna’s younger sister Asha, will all be making their Olympic debuts in the team event.

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.”

The selected athletes are: 

  • Yvette Baker, Birmingham, 20
  • Katie Clark, Reading, 18
  • Katie Dawkins, Bristol, 23
  • Olivia Federici, Portsmouth, 22
  • Jennifer Knobbs, Toronto, 22
  • Vicki Lucass, Yateley, 21
  • Asha Randall, Ascot, 22
  • Jenna Randall, Ascot, 23
  • Katie Skelton, Reading, 24

The British Gas GBR Synchronised Swimming Team have 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.

National Performance Director Biz Price has overseen their progression over the past Olympic cycle and is adamant the squad will continue to improve after the Games.

"Since the opening of the High Performance Centre all of our athletes have been training for this Olympic opportunity and 2016," said Price. 

“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 have 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.”

Randall and Allison reached a personal best ranking of eighth at the 2011 World Championships in Shanghai.

And the pair insist they're hoping a similar performance in London will inspire the next generation of British Synchronised Swimmers to take up the sport.

“It's fantastic knowing that I will be going to the Olympics this year," said Randall. "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.”

Federici added: “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.”

The British team have already had the chance to compete at London Aquatics Centre, finishing 10th at the Olympic Qualifier in April which doubled up as a test event for the Games.

And team member Katie Dawkins admits being selected to compete at the Aquatics Centre in July is fulfilling a life-long dream.

“I'm so excited to be selected to be part of Team GB," said Dawkins. "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.”

Asha Randall added: “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.”

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