ST. PETERSBURG, RUSSIA, Nov. 12 /CNW/ - Three-time Olympic medal winner Karen Cockburn of Toronto sparked the Canadian women's trampoline team to a bronze medal at the world trampoline championships on Thursday in St. Petersburg, Russia.
Making her eighth world championship appearance, Cockburn, 28, combined with Rosannagh MacLennan, also of Toronto, and newcomer Samantha Sendel of Aurora, Ont., for a score of 109.60 points, just shy of the Russian squad which claimed the silver medal with 110.30 points.
A near perfect Chinese team easily ran away with the gold with a score of 117 points.
"The team competition is kind of neat because there's a lot of pressure to do well for your team not just yourself," said Cockburn, who will also be going for another medal on Saturday in the women's individual final. "There's a different kind of dynamic and it's fun and exciting."
MacLennan, who nipped Cockburn for the women's title at the Canadian championships last June, was the last Canadian to compete and admitted to a slight case of nerves after a long wait between the warm-up and her routine.
"I was a little shaky when I was bouncing on the trampoline before starting but I managed to pull it together," said MacLennan, who will also be looking to add another medal to her growing collection in the individual final.
Sendel, the rookie on the squad, looked a little dazed after receiving her medal in her world championship debut.
"It was pretty nerve wracking," said Sendel. "I was shaking on the trampoline waiting to start because the judges were taking their time but once I was actually doing it I was thinking 'this is going pretty good, this is going pretty good, ok your almost done,' and then I was finished."
Kailey MacLeod, who competed in the qualification round, also won a medal at her first world championship as the reserve for the final.
In other events Thursday, Canadian teams also qualified for finals in men's and women's double-mini trampoline and in women's tumbling.
In individual competition, Emily Smith of Burlington, Ont., led the Canadian charge, reaching the women's tumbling final for the first time in four world championship appearances.
"Making finals is a bid deal," said Smith, who secured her spot in the eight-woman final by placing fifth, along with Ashley Speed of Toronto who qualified eighth.
"Prelims are the hardest thing to do but then once you're in the final you've just go to go out there and hit your passes," said Smith.
"It's still nerve wracking but I know what I can do and I just have to go out there and show it."
In mini trampoline, Alex Seifert of Calgary qualified for the final in the men's event and Julie Warnock of Calgary and Corissa Boychuk of Airdre, Alta., made the grade in the women's competition.
In the men's team final Siefert will be joined by Luke Friesen of Kelowna, B.C., Kyle Soehn of Red Deer, and Scott Young of Calgary.
The other members of the women's double-mini team are: Chelsea Nerpio of Richmond, B.C., Jillian Bruce of Calgary.
The competition runs through Saturday.
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SOURCE GYMNASTICS CANADA
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