LONG-time friends Jordan Rooke and Jess Brunt have a shared memory they will hold on to forever — a silver medal from world aerobics championships.
The Warrnambool teenagers, both 15, are celebrating a stunning week competing together on the international stage for the first time.
They earned second in the junior sport aerobics mixed pairs section in Belgrade, Serbia, holding their position from the preliminary and semi-final rounds. Jubilant coach Emma Bellman, writing to The Standard about midnight Thursday in the eastern European country, said she was ecstatic with the result.
Bellman, who runs EKB Fitness and Aerobics, said Jordan and Jess produced a career-best, two-minute routine in the final.
“The prelims they came out strong but the nerves showed a little. They were happy with their first round but knew they could step it up,” she said.
“Semis they went for it and I told them to enjoy it because that’s what judges want to see this year — effortless and entertainment.
“They did this but there was still room for more aerobic improvement, meaning they could jump higher and go stronger.
“Finals they went for it. Sitting in second they were pumped up and ready to give it their all.
“They pulled off their best routine of the year. They were so happy with the routine and knew it was a medal-winning routine.”
Bellman said Jordan and Jess had an obvious connection, scoring high for their artistic work.
But their Russian opponents, who won the gold medal, were better technically.
In a coincidental piece of symmetry, Bellman also won silver in the junior mixed pairs in 2005. Jess and Jordan wore the same-styled uniform as their coach did eight years ago, but with different colours
“As a coach, I was so proud of them. It’s amazing to watch a pair run on stage announced under the name EKB Fitness and Aerobics,” Bellman said.
“It was such a proud moment. I will remember this forever. Jess and Jordan have made me very proud, as I’m sure the rest of the club at home are.”
Bellman said she was pleased with her own efforts at the world championships, in the senior sport aerobics female trios section. She teamed with Shepparton’s Emma O’Keeffe and Geelong’s Kayla Bamford to form the trio Devotion, finishing fifth.
The result was one position better than they achieved in 2012.
Bellman said she was unsure if the trio would attempt to improve its result in 2014.
“Next year we are unsure about, just due to time and travel issues, but never say never. We may be back,” she said.
“I am in a trio with two of the most amazing girls and we get along so well, which I believe is a huge factor towards our success.
“I don’t picture myself retiring from this sport any time soon, but time will tell.”