Jamaica gymnast shines on world stage

To the thumping beat of the movie soundtrack for the James Bond film, “Dr. No,” Jamaican Gymnast Danusia Francis leaped and tumbled into a qualifying spot for Jamaica at the Olympic test event, following high marks at the recent World Gymnastics champions in Glasgow, Scotland.

Competing in the floor, vault, beam and uneven bars, Francis earned Jamaica’s highest all-around score in the competition at 51,999 points, finishing overall in 66th place. Francis earned her highest score of the night on her vault routine. But it was her daring and fun James Bond floor exercise that became an audience favorite.

“It felt amazing to be on the world stage,” Francis said, who is currently studying and training at the University of California, Los Angeles. “I was so relaxed with all the lights and screens; I am used to it from college, so I made sure to just keep the same mindset. The atmosphere was amazing in there!”

Her coach Valorie Kondos Field is still looking forward to watching her apprentice perform on the world stage.

“Knowing Danusia, get her a crowd and get her a spotlight, she’s gonna win the hearts of every single person in that arena,” Kondos Field said.

Francis also says she hopes to become Jamaica’s first Olympic competitor in gymnastics. A dual citizen of both Jamaica and the UK, the 23-year-old previously represented Great Britain as a member of the reserve team at the 2012 London Olympic Games.

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