This winter school holiday break, 13 Delta Brisbane and Southport gymnasts, two coaches and one chaperone, headed off on the experience of a lifetime.
Over 10 days the girls experienced a Delta Senior International Tour, exploring New York & training at different venues across the city; and heading to Montreal, Canada to train in some of the leading gyms in the city, visit the home of Cirque De Soleil and support Georgia Godwin as she challenged the World Gymnastics Championships!
Our tourers had such an exciting adventure! Not only did they challenge their skill learning and experience life in different gyms, they worked together as a team, built lifelong friendships & brought home lots of (shopping) and memories!
What an amazing experience for our senior gymnasts and coaches. Thanks to everyone who made this tour possible – Lauren for organising, Josh and Wendy for your amazing leadership and sense of fun and adventure, Linda (Emi’s mum) for being our awesome tour chaperone and of course to the Delta mums and dads for supporting the girls on their adventure!
Wendy and Josh, our coaches on tour took lots of photos and gave a great run down of their travels below.
INT TOUR UPDATE 1
Our jet setters arrived safely in NYC after their long haul and began the tour with a jam packed few days! After settling into their accommodation the team headed out to explore Times Square, where they snapped some shots of the city lights and visited the delicious M n M World! That night they had an awesome buffet dinner where you weighed your plate to determine the price… our smallest team member Ava managed to win!!
After dinner the girls crashed and had a great sleep! The next morning they woke early to get ready for training at Chelsea Piers, they jumped on the subway and walked to the gym. The gym was awesome over looking the Hudson River and the girls loved training in air-con!
After a few hours in the gym it was time to shop!! Hours spent in Sephora and H&M (whilst Josh had a few Starbucks close by) and later that evening they hit Broadway for the musical School of Rock by Andrew Loyd Webber. The children in the show were phenomenal and played the instruments themselves!
Following the show they headed to Grand Central Station and the Met Steps to reenact some Gossip Girl scenes before having dinner and heading home for an early night.
The girls were up early on Day 2and headed to the Top of the Rock to check out some incredible views of the city! Afterwards, they visited the very moving memorial of 9/11, and walked past Wall St and the Staten Island Ferry terminal.
INT TOUR UPDATE #2:
More exploring, as our team of tourers jumped on the ferry to see the Statue of Liberty. Walking their way along the river afterwards we found our way up to the Brooklyn Bridge, before hitting 5th Avenue! The girls shopped up a storm at Tiffany Co. and Victoria Secret, and with all this walking and shopping, were ready for a delicious meal at Applebee’s Restaurant, before returning to the hotel for a well-earned sleep!
Day 3 – Happy 17th Birthday Zoe! 🎉
We all woke early and headed to Starbucks for coffee before a nice walk through Central Park for training at NYC Elite Gymnastics. Central Park was amazing and we even spotted some dog walkers (just like the movies)! It’s not every day you can say you walked through Central Park to training! Training at NYC Elite was a fantastic experience, like no other gym the girls had been to before. The girls had fun checking out all the sections of the gym and the level 10’s were lucky enough to have an audience of junior gymnasts cheering them on while they were tumbling on floor. The girls had a blast working in the bars area and learning some new and challenging strength activities with Daniel (NYC Elite Coach). There were lots of laughs and sore muscles that’s for sure!
The girls put some new skills together on beam and especially loved the floor ground beam – they wanted to bring it home with them! They were extremely well looked after and loved their time at NYC Elite!
It was then time for a group birthday lunch and treat for Zoe! We all walked back to 5th Ave (yes, there was some more shopping along the way) and let’s just say it was a challenge to keep 13 teenage girls together when shopping involved!
Our tourers rounded out their day with a slice of NYC Pizza for dinner and a last walk through Times Square. Afterwards it was time to pick up our bags and battle the subway to the bus station – next stop Montreal and cheering on Georgia Godwin at World Championships!
INT TOUR UPDATE #3:
After long bus ride and making our way through Canadian customs we finally made it to Montreal! We all wheeled our suitcases through the streets of Montrel to find the M Hotel, where we were staying. The M Hotel was an amazing, funky hotel with great rooms, perfect for one big slumber party! The team were pretty exhausted from their trek so most decided to crash for a few hours before exploring the city.
Once everyone woke refreshed, it was time to explore the French culture of Montreal. We definitely felt like we were in France! The girls had lunch in a little food court and walked to the Old Port of Montreal for some souvenir shopping, before getting ready for the Delta Bicycle Race (6 person bikes in Montreal!). Our gymnasts literally raced until the chains fell off, with the winning team lead by Josh! Great laughs were had by the water, “Fast and Furious” style.
After an adrenaline filled afternoon, the team walked home and tasted some ‘Poutine’ and Hot dogs. (Poutine is a Quebecois–Canadian dish originally made with French fries & cheese curds topped with a brown gravy.) It was then time for showers and an early night ready for more fun tomorrow!
INT TOUR UPDATE #4:
On day two in Montreal the girls had a great sleep in and got ready for a visit to the Biosphere (Museum of Climate Change) and La Ronde (Six Flags Theme Park). The directions were hard to understand as our French is somewhat limited, however, we eventually worked out the Metro system and were on our way!
The girls had an absolute blast navigating the theme park and Casey even conquered her fears and went on a roller coaster for the first time!! Great job Casey! (there may have been a few nervous tears involved…but she was very excited by the end of the ride!). There were so many roller coasters and rides to choose from, the girls didn’t want to leave! Given that the girls were having such a blast, Josh and Wendy surprised them with an extended ticket until 8:00pm to experience the haunted fright night houses of La Ronde! Turns out none of us are as tough as we thought, with plenty of screams and squeals as we walked through the themed houses filled with live actors!
There were endless laughs, dropping to the floor, screams and tears as they entered the Zombie feeding grounds at dusk. Ava had a close call as Josh threw her into the human feeding pen! The girls then plucked up the courage to enter the three Nightmare Mazes and walked through the darkness into the unknown. The live actors inside the mazes really gave the girls a scare they will never forget!
After a massive day out we finished up with a yummy pasta dinner. The girls were so worn out that some were falling asleep at the table! We always plan to use every minute on our Delta tours and experience as much as we can – this trip is no different!
INT TOUR UPDATE #5:
The team had nice breakfast before heading out to Club Gymnix for some training. We arrived at the gym with the goal of every gymnast achieving a new skill or step up in skill. The girls had a fantastic session with the main focus on bars and beam. There were so many stations the girls could use and we got lots of work done! Some of the new skills achieved were blind changes, pak saltos, stalders, flic layouts, side saltos, aerials and combinations of all sorts. All the girls ended the session happy, motivated and inspired after achieving their new skills!
Next was a quick stop at a five story shopping mall (yep, that’s right you heard me, shopping… AGAIN!). After lunch we headed to the Barbie Expo. Every Barbie doll you could think of was in the exhibition. It was a very cool display and even Josh was excited taking snapchats! (check out the photo of Josh below as a life size Barbie (Ken) doll!)
Next we headed straight out to the Olympic Stadium to watch the Men’s Subdivision 3 Qualifications at the 2017 Gymnastics World Championship. We saw the men from Australia, Canada, Japan, China and more! Some huge skills were competed along with some great stacks! Such an awesome experience in the Arena.
Another great day had by all!
INT TOUR UPDATE #6:
The team were up early again this morning as we had another exciting day planned! Today we had a special backstage visit to Cirque Du Soleil headquarters! The gymnasts were treated to a private tour around the campus, which certainly did not disappoint and both the girls and coaches were amazed. We visited the training areas, costume department, make up training, weights gym, physio area, dance studios, props department and the list goes on! Such an incredible facility!
To wrap up their tour the girls were also treated to a training performance from an acro team, which was simply amazing to watch. We all left feeling very inspired!
After grabbing some lunch we headed to the Montreal Biodome, which is a facility located at Olympic Park which allows you to walk through replicas of four ecosystems found in the Americas. The girls enjoyed seeing animals they have never seen before like raccoons and sloths!
After a quick nap in the sunshine, we headed back inside the Olympic Stadium, this time to watch Delta’s Georgia Godwin and the Aussie girls compete in their qualification round! The Arena looked awesome once again and the girls were excited to cheer Georgia on! Waving the Aussie flags, they really enjoyed watching Georgia hit all her routines! She was such an incredible competitor for Australia and seemed so cool, calm and collected on the floor. She successfully ranked 3rd AA in the session which we now know has secured her a spot in the All- Around final!!! Such an outstanding achievement and we were so glad we had a support team in the stands!
Wendy and Josh then surprised the crew with the unique experience of axe throwing at Rage! Yes, it was just like archery… but with axes (nobody was hurt!) The girls had to channel their inner warrior and focus on their technique to hit the target! The prize was dessert if they could hit the wall and make the axe stay. All were successful so we headed out for ice cream to finish off the night.
Yet another awesome day on Tour!
INT TOUR UPDATE 7:
The final day!
This morning we ventured out to a church called Notre-Damm Basilica in Old Town Montreal. It was an amazing church inside with beautiful stained glass windows.
The team then headed back on the Metro to Club Gymnix for another sensational training session, learning new skills and combinations. Beam and bars were favourites again today with shootovers, toe half’s, clear hips, gainer flics, flic-lay- flics and lots of aerials completed! The girls did fantastic job moving out of their comfort zones and giving new things a try. After strength they’d worked up quite an appetite, so we jumped back on the Metro to grab some lunch in a funky little diner.
With their bodies well exercised, it was time to challenge the girls’ minds! So off we went to an escape room called Amaze. The girls were split into 3 groups where they were placed into a scenario and locked in a room. They needed to use team building skills to crack the codes and escape the room. Despite trying their hardest…all 3 teams failed to escape the rooms in time and are never coming home… (just kidding!) There was a prison break, military and a laboratory escape room all fitted with many padlocks, codes, puzzles and riddles to solve. What a great hour spent, while a thunderstorm rolled into Montreal.
The girls could not stop talking about their experiences in the escape rooms as they travelled back to Olympic Park once again. We we all very keen to watch the USA gymnasts in action at Worlds! It was an awesome competition to watch and see what skill trend each country competes. Seeing Ragan Smith compete live was a highlight! The atmosphere was fantastic and the girls were so excited to catch up with Georgia and the other Aussie girls in the stands.
As the competition came to an end, it was time to go home, pack up our two weeks of memories (and shopping!) and get some sleep. What an amazing experience these girls have had, something they will never forget!
Next stop… Brisvegas!
The girls arrived home just in time to watch Georgia compete in the All Around finals at World’s – everyone was thrilled to see her hit another 4 beautiful routines and place 13th all around in the world!
Check out all of the photos from this year’s Senior International Tour below!