December 21 2014 Latest news:
Thursday, August 7, 2014
He has coached British champions and witnessed some of the world’s best gymnasts perform.
But Pipers Vale head coach Andy Wood MBE admits he will still be feeling the nerves this weekend as millions of people tune in to watch a new celebrity gymnastics competition, which his latest pupil will be appearing in.
Mr Wood has been training actor and former Blue Peter presenter Peter Duncan for the last eight weeks in preparation for the BBC 1’s Tumble, which will premiere this Saturday.
Duncan will compete with celebrities including Sugababe Amelle Berrabah, Ian ‘H’ Watkins from Steps and actor Bobby Lockwood in a bid to win the competition.
And Mr Wood has the confidence he can all the way.
He said: “He has not got a background in gymnastics at all so I had to train him up to do lots of different disciplines. It has been hard work but he has done really well.
“He is an amazing person and he works really hard.
“The further he can go in the competition will be fantastic.”
Pipers Vale Gymnastics Club, in Ipswich, has enjoyed a great deal of success in recent years.
Brazilian gymnasts trained at the Brazier’s Wood Road centre prior to the Olympic Games in London and earlier this year, young members of the club Jaime Smith and Halle Hilton were crowned British champions.
Mr Wood added: “I think because of the work we have done at the club and the success that the club has had has possibly helped me being asked to audition for it. It is going to help the club as well.
“(The show) has come round very fast. You think you have got plenty of time and then the first show is upon you. There are potentially millions watching, which is quite nerve-racking.”
Peter Duncan was famous for his daredevil stunts as Blue Peter host in the 1980s, which included fighting a sumo wrestler in Japan and cleaning Big Ben’s clockface.
The 60-year-old, who appeared in Flash Gordon, also showed his love of competition when he finished second in a celebrity special of the BBC show, Total Wipeout.
Tumble will be shown on BBC1 at 6.30pm on Saturday.