Local acrobatic gymnasts Jarrett Darrah and Emma Fitzgerald, who train at International Gymnastic Centre in West Sacramento, were selected to the USA Gymnastics AGDT, Age Group Developmental Team, and last month trained at Bela Karolyi’s Olympic Training Facility in New Waverly, Texas.
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Each year, USA Gymnastics selects athletes to the AGDT who are qualified to be on the National Team but too young to travel Internationally. To be selected, athletes had to compete at the USA Acrobatic National Championship and receive a qualifying score, get nominated from the selection committee and complete certain high level skills.
Jarrett and Emma competed at the 2013 National Championships in July in Louisville, Kentucky where they were selected to be on the AGDT.
Jarrett, age 12, is a resident of Placerville and has competed in the sport of Acrobatic Gymnastics for seven years while Emma, age 9, also a Placerville resident, has competed for five. They’re beginning their third year as a pair together and spend 20 plus hours in the gym each week.
Darrah, who attends Pleasant Valley Middle School and Emma, a student at Schnell Elementary School, traveled to Texas with their coach, Kim Duncan, for a week of training at the Olympic Training facility owned and operated by Karolyi.
The camp is the training facility of several Olympic and World Champions. Karolyi is best remembered as the coach for Olympic gold medalists Nadia Comaneci, Mary Lou Retton and Kerri Strug who he carried to the podium for her gold medal in 1996.