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First-Year Senior Rogers Faces 2009 with Confidence
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Brittany Rogers (Canada)

Preparing for her official entry into the senior international ranks in 2009, Canadian gymnast Brittany Rogers says her win at this month's Elite Canada meet brought "a huge confidence boost" for the new year.

Rogers, technically a junior until 2009, placed first all-around in the senior division at Elite Canada, held Dec. 12-14 in Gatineau, Que. She finished 0.950 above silver medalist Sydney Sawa, a member of Canada's team at the 2007 World Championships. Third was fellow junior Charlotte Mackie, a clubmate at Omega Gymnastics Academy.

Rogers, who will turn 16 on June 8, said her Elite Canada victory was a pleasant surprise.

"My expectations for Elite Canada were to mainly go, have fun, and try and hit four for four, which was exactly what I did!" she said. "I also wanted to try and come in the top three in the all-around, and medal on a few apparatuses. Exceeding those goals was so exciting, and gave me a huge confidence boost."

Earlier this year, Rogers won two individual bronze medals at the Junior Pacific Rim Championships in San Jose, and placed sixth all-around at the Canadian Senior Championships. In 2007 she won the Canadian junior all-around title, and a team bronze medal at the Pan American Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Rogers, who is coached by Vladimir and Svetlana Lashin at Omega in Coquitlam, B.C., said she is quickly adjusting to her new status in the senior division.

"Being the No. 1 senior in Canada is so overwhelming, because I never thought of myself being in that position," said Rogers, who also won individual titles on vault and balance beam at Elite Canada. "Now that I have that title, I feel so confident for the upcoming 2009 competitions."

In the new year, Rogers will be officially eligible for senior international events, including the World Championships that will take place in London in October. She said the new generation of Canadian talent is ready to join forces with more experienced gymnasts, such as Sawa and 2008 Olympian Nansy Damianova.

"The group of gymnasts moving towards the Canadian senior team is doing really well," Rogers said. "All of us have our own apparatuses that we can specialize on, as well as being strong in the all-around. So I think this gives Canada a great opportunity to do really strongly."

Rogers said her biggest goal for the new year is to qualify for the World Championships, but she has other plans, as well.

"Making the 2009 Worlds team has been my goal for a really long time, so I'm really excited to see what happens for that," she told IG this week. "For new skills, I might be adding a few more here and there, but I'll mainly be concentrating on getting my scores up. I added a few (skills) for Elite Canada which seemed to work well, so I will be mainly just focusing on cleaning up my routines."

After a busy competitive year at both the junior and senior levels, Rogers said she will take a few days off from training during the Christmas and New Year's holidays. She spent Christmas in Kelowna, north of Coquitlam, with her maternal grandparents.

"I love going up there, especially in winter," Rogers said. "They get so much snow which is so fun to sled down with my sister, and play with my dog who loves the snow. Then I am going to Vancouver Island to visit my dad's side of the family for a day trip, which is always fun. For New Year's, I will probably just spend it with friends and family."

IG Online Related Feature
Rogers Wins Senior Elite Canada (December 13, 2008)

International Gymnast Magazine Related Feature
"Shooting Star" - Rogers profile (July/August 2007)

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