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Nicole Mawhinney in World glory bid on the road to Rio

Published 24/10/2015

Nicole Mawhinney is relishing the opportunity to keep her Olympic dream alive at the World Championships in Glasgow.

The 19-year-old from Portavogie, a student teacher at Stranmillis College, goes for glory with Team Ireland in Glasgow's SSE Hydro Arena today.

Nicole - who feels competing so close to home will be a huge advantage - said: "The aim for myself and my two team mates is to produce good clean performances to qualify for the Olympic test event ahead of next year's Rio Games.

"This is the only chance of getting a place at the test event so that shows the importance of producing our best."

The date and venue for the crucial test event have yet to be revealed, when Olympic places will be up for grabs.

Vault, uneven bars, beam and floor are all on today's schedule.

"My favourite discipline is floor. The competition will be fierce with the world's best gymnasts there," she said.

Nicole is a member of the famous Salto club in Lisburn where she is under the guidance of top Chinese coach Sun Jie.

China's Olympic gymnasts trained at Salto ahead of London 2012.

Nicole recalled: "It was great watching them in action.

"It showed the dedication and discipline required."

Belfast Telegraph

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