The best aerialists under the age of 19 competed today at the Junior World Championships in Valmalenco, Italy.
Three Canadians, including Catrine Lavallée (Montreal, QC), Lewis Irving (Quebec City, QC), and Laurence Proteau (Quebec City, QC) competed with Lavallée having he best result out of the group with a fourth place finish.
Lavallée entered the day as the defending World Champion.
“I had a really bad day in training and was unable to land my jumps before the competition,” said Lavallée. “It made me enter qualification a little stressed out. I tried not to worry about it. My plan was to jump the way I have all season. My coach gave me great confidence and we did it. The competition was excellent and the skill level was very high. There was a lot of talent here.”
Russian Aliaksandra Ramanouskaya won the title with a score of 165.19, edging out Kazak Zhanbota Aldabergenova (163.11). Proteau finished in 14th place among the women with a score of 105.56.
Lewis greatly improved his showing this year improving from a 17th place finish in 2014 to end in eighth place today.
“I’m happy I landed all my jumps, but I fell short on the degree of difficulty it would take to reach the podium here,” said Irving. “I’m happy with my performance though. It’s been a great experience and I can hold my head up high. I’m excited for the summer and to learn new tricks. I’m already looking forward to next season.”
American Harrison Smith (192.46) would eventually win gold by the slimmest of margins over Russian Maxim Burov (192.11). Great Britain’s Lloyd Wallace earned bronze with a final score of 190.70.
Both Lewis and Lavallée captured the NorAM titles earlier in the season.
“It’s really great to see our athletes competing against such a strong field and holding their own,” said Head Coach Caroline Franc. “They really did their best jumps here. They fought through some tough times during training and they worked through it. As a coach, you like to see your developmental athletes overcome obstacles. This is only the beginning for them. They can accomplish so much more in the future.”
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