On Saturday 6th October, whilst most people were packing to head home for the holidays, York Dancesport were taking part in their final competition of the term – the Manchester Winter Friendly. Despite the early start, leaving the University Campus at 7am, the team were raring to go. A good selection of both beginner and novice couples were present, and a few supporters to cheer us on from the side.
The day, as usual with competitions, began with ballroom, in which everyone performed admirably. All of our beginner couples got through at least one round, with some making it through to the semi-finals! Our novice team also did well, with couples progressing through rounds in both the Quickstep and Waltz, and in the open rounds which are open to all levels of dancer (including advanced!).
After a surprisingly long lunch break, we were ready to dance again, but this time in Rock ‘n’ Roll. Two couples progressed through to the semi-finals, once again proving York’s strength in this particular dance. We also took part in the Team Formation Charleston, a last minute entry redoing a routine from Woodstock which saw us being placed third.
In the Latin rounds, once again the beginner couples did very well, progressing past the first round. Our novice team also did well, particularly Katie Peeling and Katherine Jackson who reached the third round of Novice Cha and Jive, and made it to the second rounds of Open Samba and Rumba. Anna Hughes and Rhydian Beynon-Davies also performed well, making it through to the fourth round of Novice Cha Cha Cha.
The final part of the day was the team match which was held in fancy dress with the theme of literary characters with sparkles. York chose Alice in Wonderland and overall received the award for best dressed team! The beginner couples (Anton Ivlev, Lydia Teale, Belle Kenyon, Freddie Turner, Timothy Pilbeam and Dessislava Veltcheva) completed the competition on a high with the assistance of two oompa lumpas (borrowed from another university to make up numbers), finishing in fourth place. This was a fantastic achievement as they only started dancing in October; it was the first competition for most of them and they brought home medals. We are looking forward to seeing what 2015 and the next term have in store!