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London 2012 Olympic Games One-Year Out Preview

Gymnastics

 
2012 Preview
Women
Since the 2008 Olympic Games, the U.S. women have continued to demonstrate their prowess on the international stage. The U.S. women won five medals at both the 2009 and 2010 World Championships. In 2010, they won the team silver, plus the all-around bronze medal, in addition to a gold, a silver and a bronze in the individual events. At the 2009 World Championships, the U.S. women’s five medals – two gold, one silver and two bronze – included the gold and silver all-around medals. The 2010 team silver medal qualified the women for the 2011 World Championships, the first of two opportunities to qualify for the 2012 Olympic Games. The U.S. women also won the team title at the 2010 Pan American Championships to qualify for the 2011 Pan American Games in Guadalajara, Mexico.
  • From 2000-10, the U.S. women have won 55 Olympic and world medals, making the USA the only country to win a team medal in every world and Olympic competition during that time. The next closest country in the medal total is a tie between Romania and Russia with 31, followed by China at 28.
  • At the Olympics from 2000-08, the U.S. women have won 15 total medals to Romania’s 13 and 11 for both Russia and China.
  • The world championships medal tally for 2001-10 is: USA, 40; Russia, 20; Romania, 18; and China, 17.
  • In 2008, the U.S. women won eight Olympic medals (two gold, five silver and one bronze), which means they have earned an Olympic medal in seven consecutive Olympic Games (1984-2008). They also have won team medals in six of the last seven Olympic Games: gold in 1996; silver in 1984, 2004 and 2008; and bronze in 1992 and 2000. The current combination of veterans and up-and-coming gymnasts puts the USA in position to be highly competitive for the 2012 Olympic Games. For this quad, women’s routines now include eight skills rather than the 10 in the last quad. Based on the results at the 2010 World Championships, the U.S. women appear poised to continue atop the world rankings.

At the 2010 World Championships, the USA missed the team gold by just 0.201 points. The USA’s Rebecca Bross won her second career world all-around medal when she finished third. She went on to win two individual event medals: silver on the balance beam and bronze for the uneven bars. 2008 Olympic team silver-medalist Alicia Sacramone capped her first-year back by winning the vault gold medal, bringing her career world medal total to nine (tying Nastia Liukin and Shannon Miller for the most career world medals by a U.S. gymnast).

At the 2009 World Championships, 2008 Olympic team silver-medalist Bridget Sloan won the world all-around title, with teammate Bross finishing a close second. Kayla Williams won the vault title in her World Championships debut. Ivana Hong and Bross both earned individual event bronze medals, Hong for the balance beam and Bross on bars.

2009 was the third time in five years of world or Olympic competition that the U.S. women finished first and second in the all-around: 2009 – Sloan and Bross, world championships; 2008, Nastia Liukin and Shawn Johnson, Olympic Games; and 2005, Chellsie Memmel and Liukin, world championships.

Men
The U.S. men have continued to build momentum from their team bronze-medal finish at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, when they made U.S. history by winning back-to-back Olympic team medals. At the 2010 World Championships, the U.S. men barely missed the team medal podium by finishing fourth and automatically qualifying for the 2011 World Championships, the first of two opportunities to advance to the Olympic Games in London. The U.S. men also won the team title at the 2010 Pan American Championships to qualify for the 2011 Pan American Games in Guadalajara, Mexico. By winning the team bronze medal at the 2008 Olympic Games, the U.S. men now have earned a medal in five of the last seven Olympic Games – 1984, 1992, 1996, 2004 and 2008. Since the 2008 Olympics, the U.S. men have made positive progress internationally.

At the 2010 Worlds, Jonathan Horton won the all-around bronze medal, the USA’s first men’s all-around medal since 2003. The USA also qualified three men to the event finals: Steven Legendre, floor exercise; and Chris Brooks and Danell Leyva, horizontal bar. Brandon Wynn was the first reserve on still rings.

At the 2009 World Championships, the USA sent a young team led by Horton that had five gymnasts who were competing in their first world championships. Despite their inexperience, the USA qualified four of six gymnasts to event finals, a feat that had not been accomplished in 20 years. Tim McNeill  landed in seventh place in the final all-around rankings, and Leyva just missed a medal on high bar with his fourth-place finish. McNeill also was fifth on pommel horse, while Legendre and Horton were eighth on floor and high bar. The 2009 World Championships did not include a team competition.

Horton, who earned the team bronze and the horizontal bar silver medals at the 2008 Olympics, won the U.S. all-around title at both the 2009 and 2010 Visa Championships, as well as the 2011 AT&T American Cup. Since the Olympics, he has graduated from college, gotten married and returned to Houston to train with Tom Meadows at Cypress Academy, where he trained prior to going to the University of Oklahoma. He focused on returning to competition form in 2010, finishing second in the all-around at the American Cup and third on the still rings and horizontal bar at the world cup in Paris in addition to his world all-around bronze medal. He is a member of Team Hilton HHonors.

Leyva, who won the U.S. parallel bars title and was second in the all-around at the 2010 Visa Championships, was fifth on the high bar at the world championships. Earlier in 2010, he had a successful Pacific Rim Championships: in addition to being a member of the gold-medal team, he won the parallel bars and high bar gold medals, along with a bronze for the still rings. He also was second on the high bar at the 2011 World Cup in Paris. Coached by his stepfather, Yin Alvarez, the 19-year-old won the parallel bars and horizontal bar titles at the 2011 Winter Cup, along with second in the all-around. He is a member of Team Hilton HHonors.

Rhythmic
After missing qualifying for the 2008 Olympic Games by just four spots and 35-hundreths of a point, the USA has revived its focus and begun seeing international success in rhythmic gymnastics. Julie Zetlin qualified for the all-around finals at the 2010 World Championships, the first U.S. gymnast to do so since 2003. The USA qualified in both individual and group rhythmic gymnastics for the 2011 World Championships, the first of two opportunities to advance to the 2012 Olympic Games. The United States also will compete in both individual and group rhythmic gymnastics at the 2011 Pan American Games in Guadalajara, Mexico.

Zetlin cemented her spot as the USA’s top rhythmic gymnast when she won the all-around, hoop, ball and ribbon titles, as well as the rope silver medal, at the 2010 Visa Championships and the all-around, hoop and ribbon crowns at the 2011 Rhythmic Challenge. At the 2011 World Cup in Montreal, she was sixth in the all-around and ribbon, as well as eighth in both ball and clubs. Zetlin dominated at the 2010 Pan American Championships, winning the all-around, rope and ball gold medals and the bronze for ribbon. At the 2010 Chicago Cup, Zetlin was the silver medalist in the all-around for the second straight year, as well as won the gold medal for ribbon and the silver for rope, hoop and ball.

Other seniors to watch are: Shelby Kisiel, the 2010 U.S. rope champion and all-around silver-medalist who won the all-around and all four event titles at the 2011 U.S. Rhythmic Classic; Polina Kozitskiy, who represented the USA in the Youth Olympic Games, where she was an all-around finalist; Alexis Page, who won the junior hoop title at the 2010 Visa Championships, as well as finished second in ball and third in the all-around, rope and clubs; Olga Pavlenko, who was third in the all-around and rope at the 2010 Visa Championships; and Anastasia Torba, who was second on ribbon and fourth in the all-around at the 2011 U.S. Rhythmic Challenge.

Two of the USA’s juniors have enjoyed great success and will be age-eligible in 2012:
  • Rebecca Sereda has won the junior all-around title and numerous individual event titles at every U.S. event since February 2009, including the junior all-around gold medal at both the 2009-10 Chicago Cup and the 2009 Junior Pan American Championships. She claimed four medals in the junior division at the 2011 Orange Irina Deleanu Trophy — one gold (ball), two silver (hoop, clubs) and one bronze (all-around). At the 2011 U.S. Rhythmic Classic, she was second in the all-around and won all four event titles.
  • Jasmine “Jazzy” Kerber won the clubs title and was second in the all-around at the 2010 Visa Championships; finished third in the all-around at the 2009-10 Chicago Cup and second in the all-around at the 2010 Opal Cup; and won four medals at the Montreal International Invitational (one gold, one silver and two bronze). Kerber won the junior all-around title and the silver medal for all four events at the 2011 U.S. Rhythmic Classic.

Rhythmic gymnastics also has group competition in the Olympic Games. Each group has six members. The U.S. senior group finished 22nd in the all-around at the 2010 World Rhythmic Gymnastics Championships, qualifying to compete at the 2011 World Rhythmic Championships. The USA won silver medals in both five-hoops and three ribbons/two ropes at the 2010 Pan Am Championships, where the group qualified for the 2011 Pan Am Games with its fifth place finish in the all-around. At the 2009 Grand Prix in Thias, France, the U.S. rhythmic gymnastics group became the first U.S. group to compete in the finals at a grand prix event. The USA’s only entry in Olympic group gymnastics was in 1996 when the USA earned the home country spot in Atlanta.

The U.S. group national team, which trains at North Shore Rhythmic Gymnastics in Deerfield, Ill., includes: Jessica Bogdonov, Megan Frohlich, Aimee Gupta, Michelle Przybylo, Sofya Roytburg and Sydney Sachs.

For this quad, Olympic medals are awarded in individual all-around and group. The four events for individual rhythmic gymnastics in 2011-12 are hoop, ball, clubs, and ribbon; for group in 2011-2012, ball (five gymnasts) and ribbon (three)/hoop (two).

During the coming year, the top U.S. rhythmic gymnasts will compete in multiple world cup and Pan American events, as well as attend training camps with some of the best rhythmic gymnasts in the world. The USA’s goal is to secure one of 24 individual spots and one of 12 group berths at the 2012 Olympic Games.

Trampoline
At the 2008 Olympic Games, the United States qualified both a man and a woman in trampoline for the first time, and several of the USA’s trampolinists have enjoyed international success since then. Both the U.S. men and women qualified for the 2011 Pan American Games in Guadalajara, Mexico, based on performances at the Pan American Cup 2010.

Logan Dooley and Steven Gluckstein have led the U.S. men’s trampoline effort for the past two years. In addition to winning the 2009-10 Visa Championships and 2010 Pan American Championships trampoline titles, Gluckstein has finished in the top five at six world cup events. Dooley, who won the USA’s first men’s individual trampoline world cup gold medal in Ostend, Belgium; was second at the Visa Championships and captured the gold medal at the 2010 Pan American Cup and the 2011 Winter Classic. He has also finished in the top eight at six world cup events in his career. Gluckstein’s younger brother Jeffery, in his first senior competition, finished fourth at the 2010 Visa Championships and won the trampoline title at the 2011 U.S. Elite Challenge.

Nani Vercruyssen and Alaina Williams are the front runners for the U.S. women. Vercruyssen is the reigning Pan American Championships trampoline champion and finished third at the 2010 Pan American Cup. Williams won the trampoline title at the 2010 Visa Championships, 2011 Winter Classic and 2011 U.S. Elite Challenge. Savannah Vinsant competed in the 2010 Youth Olympic Games and then moved up to the senior level.

Although synchronized trampoline is not an Olympic discipline, Dooley and Steven Gluckstein finished at the top of the 2010 World Cup synchronized trampoline rankings. The duo earned the USA’s first men’s world cup synchro gold medal in 2009, as well as five world cup medals.

In addition to qualifying both a man and a woman in individual trampoline in 2008, the USA also qualified a woman for both the 2000 and 2004 Olympics. Individual trampoline was added to the Olympic Games in 2000.

The discipline of trampoline and tumbling has four events: trampoline, tumbling, double mini-trampoline and synchronized trampoline. All trampoline and tumbling events are scored two ways, for difficulty and aesthetics. Beginning in 2011, trampoline has added “time of flight” to its elite scoring. Five aesthetic judges give a score up to 10.00, and the high and low scores are dropped. For all events, the middle three scores are added. Each skill has a difficulty rating, and the total value of all the skills in a routine are then added to the scores given by the aesthetic judges. For trampoline, time of flight is determined by a combination of laser beams mounted on the trampoline frame that record each time the athlete breaks the beam while sinking into the bed. When the athlete returns to the air above the bed, the attached timing device records the time spent airborne. That number, given in seconds, is added to the aesthetic and difficulty scores for a final, total score.

Key Athletes
Women
Members of the 2010 World Championships Team
  • Rebecca Bross: Bross had a strong 2010, finishing up with four medals at the 2010 World Championships, silver in the team competition and balance beam, and bronze in the all-around and uneven bars. She was named one of 10 finalists for the 2010 Women’s Sports Foundation Sportswoman of the Year. Bross is the 2010 Visa Championships all-around, bars and beam champion and took second on floor. She won the all-around, balance beam and floor exercise titles, as well as the silver on uneven bars, at the Pacific Rim Gymnastics Championships, where she also helped the U.S. team to a gold medal. Bross won the all-around title at the 2010 American Cup. In 2009 she finished second in the all-around at the world championships and also tied for third on bars. She was third in the all-around at the 2009 Visa Championships. She is coached by Valeri Liukin, who is a two-time Olympic gold medalist who coached his daughter, Nastia, to the Olympic all-around title. Bross, a native of Ann Arbor, Mich., is homeschooled.
  • Alexandra “Aly” Raisman: Raisman was a member of the silver medal-winning team at the 2010 World Championships, where she qualified to the all-around finals and placed 13th. She also finished just out of the medals on floor exercise in fourth place. Raisman was third in the all-around, balance beam and floor at the 2010 Visa Championships. She took third place in the all-around at the 2011 AT&T American Cup and she was second in the all-around at the 2010 American Cup. At the Pac Rim Championships, she earned second place in the all-around, beam and floor. At the 2010 City of Jesolo Trophy in Italy, Raisman won the senior all-around title. A senior at Needham High School in the fall (2011), she has two dogs, Magic and Coco. Raisman is coached by Mihai Brestyan.
  • Alicia Sacramone: Sacramone has earned nine world medals in her career, tying Nastia Liukin and Shannon Miller for the most career world medals won by a U.S. gymnast. Sacramone retired following the 2008 Olympic Games, but returned to competition in 2010. She capped off her first year back by winning the 2010 world vault title. Sacramone was a member of the silver medal-winning team at the 2010 World Championships, where she also placed fifth on balance beam. She was named USOC Athlete of the Month in October 2010, following her world championships success. At the 2010 Visa Championships, Sacramone won her fifth vault title and also took second on beam. She was a member of the silver-medal U.S. Team at the 2008 Olympic Games and took fourth on vault. At the 2007 World Championships, she helped the U.S. women win just their second world team title. Sacramone attended Brown University and competed on its gymnastics team her freshman year. She is coached by Mihai Brestyan.
  • Bridget Sloan: Sloan was a member of the 2010 World Championships team that earned the team silver medal. Despite still recovering from injury, she also finished fourth in the uneven bars final. Sloan was a member of the gold-medal team at the 2010 Pacific Rim Championships. She won the all-around gold medal at the 2009 World Gymnastics Championships, becoming just the fifth U.S. woman to claim gymnastics’ highest accomplishment outside of the Olympic all-around title. At the 2009 Visa Championships, she not only won the all-around, but also the uneven bars and floor exercise. Sloan was a vital member of the U.S. Olympic Team that earned the team silver medal at the 2008 Olympic Games. She recently graduated from Tri-West High School and has committed to the University of Florida, deferring until fall 2012. She is coached by Marvin Sharp.
Other Members of the 2010 World Championships Team
  • Mackenzie Caquatto: Caquatto was a member of the 2010 World Championships team that earned the team silver medal. She tied for fifth in the all-around at the 2010 Visa Championships and was fourth on bars. Caquatto was fifth in the all-around and third on bars at the 2009 Visa Championships. She has graduated from high school and began competing for the University of Florida in January 2011. Her younger sister, Bridgette, is also on the women’s national team. She is coached by Jiani Wu.
  • Mattie Larson: She was a member of the 2010 World Championships team that earned the team silver medal. Larson won the floor exercise title at the 2010 Visa Championships, where she also took second in the all-around and third on the uneven bars. She won the 2010 CoverGirl Classic all-around title. Larson won beam and floor titles at the 2009 World Cup in Montreal. She has graduated from high school and signed a letter of intent to compete for University of California, Los Angeles. Larson is coached by Galina Marinova and Artur Akopyan.
Others to watch
  • Gabrielle Douglas: Douglas, a first year junior national team member who is competing as a senior in 2011, took second on beam and fourth in the all-around and vault at the 2010 Visa Championships in the junior division. She also tied for eighth in the floor exercise. At the 2010 Pan American Championships, she was a member of the gold-medal team and also took first on bars and fifth in the all-around. She is coached by Liang Qiao.
  • McKayla Maroney: Maroney, a first year junior national team member who is competing as a senior in 2011, won the junior vault title at the 2010 Visa Championships with a powerful Yurchenko two-and-a-half-twist vault. She also was third in the junior all-around and tied for fourth on floor exercise and seventh on beam. At the 2010 Pan American Championships, she was a member of the gold-medal team and went on to win the individual vault and floor titles. She is coached by Galina Marinova and Artur Akopyan.
  • Kyla Ross: Ross has enjoyed success as a junior competitor and will move to the senior level in 2012. She led the team to the gold medal at the 2010 Pan American Championships, where she also won the all-around and finished second on floor and sixth on bars. At the 2010 Pacific Rim Championships, Ross won the junior vault title, helped her team win the gold medal, and took second in the junior all-around, uneven bars and floor exercise. Ross won the junior all-around title at both the 2009 and 2010 Visa Championships, where she also took first on beam and third on vault and floor in 2010, and was first on vault and beam and third on floor in 2009. At the 2009 Junior Pan American Championships, Ross and her teammates won the team gold, and she won the all-around, bars and beam titles and finished second on floor. Ross will be a high school freshman in the fall (2011). She is coached by Jenny Zhang and Howie Liang.
  • Sabrina Vega: Vega, who began competing as a senior in 2011, was a member of the 2010 Pan American Championships team that won the team gold medal, where she also won the gold medal on balance beam and the silver medal in the all-around. At the 2010 Pacific Rim Championships, Vega took second on beam in the junior division. She was second on floor and seventh in the all-around at the 2010 Visa Championships in the junior division. At the 2009 Junior Pan American Championships, she helped her team to a first-place finish and was second in the all-around and bars and fifth on beam. Vega won the floor exercise title at the 2009 Visa Championships in the junior division, where she was also third on beam and fourth in the all-around and floor. She is coached by Teodora Cepoi.
  • Jordyn Wieber: After dominating the junior division, Wieber won the all-around title at the 2011 AT&T American Cup in her senior level international debut. At the 2010 Pacific Rim Championships, she was first in the junior all-around, uneven bars and floor exercise, as well as second on vault. She also won the junior all-around, vault and bars at the 2010 CoverGirl Classic. In 2009, she won the American Cup, when the all-around competition included both juniors and seniors. Wieber also won the all-around, vault, uneven bars, balance beam and floor exercise at the Junior Team Cup of International Gymnix. She missed part of 2009 and 2010 due to injury. In 2008, she won the junior all-around, vault and floor exercise, was second on beam and placed third on bars at the Visa Championships. She is a junior (fall 2011) at DeWitt High School, where she is an honor student. She is coached by John Geddert.
Men
Members of 2009-10 World Championships Team
  • Chris Brooks: In 2010, Brooks won the all-around and horizontal bar at the Winter Cup Challenge, finished third at the American Cup, and qualified for the high bar finals at his first world championships. He also won the U.S. horizontal bar title at the 2010 Visa Championships, as well as placed second on parallel bars and fourth in the all-around. A graduate of the University of Oklahoma, Brooks was a member of the bronze-medal team at the 2010 Japan Cup. He is training at Cypress Gymnastics and is coached by Tom Meadows.
  • Chris Cameron: Cameron achieved a lot of success in 2010: he won both the Big Ten and NCAA all-around titles and helped the University of Michigan squad claim the NCAA team title; he was a member of the gold-medal team at the Pacific Rim Championships, where he finished first on pommel horse and second on floor; he competed in his first world championships; and he was a member of the bronze-medal team at the Japan Cup. He is finishing up his degree at Michigan. He also enjoys surfing, fishing, swimming, skateboarding, rock climbing, wakeboarding and playing the guitar. Cameron was born with hemihypertrophy, a congenital abnormality that causes one side of the body to grow faster than the other. He is coached by Yuan Xiao.
  • Jacob “Jake” Dalton: In 2011, Dalton won the floor exercise and vault titles and finished second on the parallel bars at the NCAA championships, where he helped the Sooners to a second-place finish; was third at the AT&T American Cup; and won the all-around, floor exercise and vault titles at the Winter Cup Challenge, as well as took second on the parallel bars and third on the still rings. In 2010, Dalton was second in the floor exercise at the Visa Championships; helped the USA to the team gold medal at the Pan American Championships, as well as finished third in the floor exercise; and was second on vault and helped his team to third place at the NCAA championships. He made his first World Championships Team in 2009, after winning the U.S. vault title. A junior at the University of Oklahoma in the fall (2011), he is majoring in human relations. He is coached by Mark Williams and Daniel Furney.
  • Jonathan Horton: Since winning the horizontal bar silver medal at the 2008 Olympic Games, Horton has earned the 2010 world all-around bronze medal; won back-to-back U.S. all-around titles (2009-10); won the 2011 AT&T American Cup; graduated from college; gotten married; and returned to Houston to train with Tom Meadows at Cypress Academy. In 2010, he finished second in the all-around at the American Cup, and third on both still rings and horizontal bar at the World Cup in Paris. A three-time team captain at the University of Oklahoma, Horton claimed 18 All-America honors, six NCAA individual titles, the 2006 NCAA all-around title, three NCAA team titles (2005-06, 2008), and the Nissen-Emery Award. He is married to Haley DeProspero, a former Oklahoma gymnast who is currently in medical school, and they have a Pomeranian named Harley.
  • Steven Legendre: Legendre was awarded the 2011 Nissen-Emery Award as the top senior gymnast. At the 2011 NCAA championships, he was second in the floor exercise and helped the University of Oklahoma to second in the team competition. In 2010, Legendre qualified for his second consecutive floor exercise finals at the world championships; won the vault title at the Visa Championships; placed third on floor at the Pac Rim Championships, in addition to helping the team capture the team title; finished first on floor, second in the all-around and third in team competition at the NCAA championships; and earned both the vault and floor crowns at the Winter Cup Challenge. In 2009, he won the all-around, floor and vault titles at the NCAA championships, as well as the floor exercise at the Visa Championships. He is currently finishing up his health and exercise science degree at the University of Oklahoma. He is coached by Mark Williams.
  • Danell Leyva: Leyva, who won the U.S. parallel bars title and was second in the all-around at the 2010 Visa Championships, was fifth on the horizontal bar at the 2010 World Championships. He won the parallel bars and horizontal bar at the 2011 Winter Cup, along with second in the all-around. He also finished second on the horizontal bar at the world cup in Paris. At the 2010 Pacific Rim Championships, he was a member of the gold-medal team and won titles on both the parallel bars and high bar, along with a bronze medal on still rings. He comes from a competitive family – his mother, Maria Gonzalez, was a competitive gymnast in Cuba, and his cousin is a two-time world champion free diver. Leyva is coached by his stepfather, Yin Alvarez, at Universal Gymnastics.
  • Paul Ruggeri: Ruggeri was the alternate for the 2010 World Championships team. He finished second on the high bar and third on vault at the 2010 Visa Championships. Earlier in the year, he won the high bar bronze medal at the 2010 World Cup in Moscow and competed on the bronze-medal team at the Japan Cup. As member of the University of Illinois men’s team, he won both the parallel bars and high bar titles and was second on floor and third in the all-around at the 2009 NCAA championships. A senior at Illinois, he is coached by 2008 Olympic bronze-medalist Justin Spring. Ruggeri’s hobbies include painting, drawing, waterskiing, wakeboarding and jet skiing.
  • Brandon Wynn: Wynn was named to his first U.S. World Championships Team for the 2010 World Championships Team, where he helped the men to their fourth-place finish and was the first reserve athlete for the still rings finals. At the 2010 Visa Championships, Wynn won the still rings title and finished third in the all-around. A member of the Ohio State University Gymnastics Team, he won two straight NCAA still rings titles (2010-11). He also won the still rings at the 2010 Winter Cup Challenge. At the 2010 World Cup in Moscow, Wynn was eighth on rings. He is finishing up his degree at Ohio State.
Others to watch
From the current junior ranks, John Orozco, C.J. Maestas and Samuel Mikulak are three to watch. Orozco and Maestas helped the USA win the team title at the 2010 Pacific Rim Championships.
  • John Orozco: Orozco won the 2010 junior Pac Rim all-around and horizontal bar titles and was second on the pommel horse, still rings and parallel bars. Orozco’s all-around score for the junior title would have won the senior men’s session at the Pac Rim. At the 2010 Winter Cup Challenge, where he competed against seniors, he was fourth on the parallel bars and eighth in the all-around. He was injured at the 2010 Visa Championships, but at the 2009 Visa Championships as a junior in the 14-15 year-old division, he won the all-around, floor exercise, pommel horse, still rings, parallel bars and high bar. He is currently training at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo., and coached by Vitaly Marinitich.
  • C.J. Maestas: He made his international debut as a senior at the 2011 Cottbus (Germany) Challenger Cup, where he was fourth in the still rings. At the 2011 Winter Cup Challenge, he won the still rings title and finished third in the all-around. Maestas won the junior still rings and pommel horse titles at the 2010 Pac Rim Championships, where he also took second in the all-around and third in the parallel bars. At the 2009 Junior Pan American Championships, he won the still rings title and earned the silver medal for the all-around, pommel horse and parallel bars. He also helped the USA win the junior team silver medal. He just signed with the University of Illinois and will be coached by 2008 Olympic bronze-medalist Justin Spring.
  • Samuel Mikulak: As a freshman at the University of Michigan, Mikulak won the all-around title at the 2011 NCAA championships, where he also was third in the floor exercise and fourth on parallel bars. In the junior 16-18 division, he won the all-around, pommel horse, parallel bars (tie) and horizontal bar titles at the 2010 Visa Championships, as well as finished second on the floor and vault and third on the still rings. Also in 2010, he won the all-around, floor exercise and vault titles, along with a silver medal on high bar and a bronze for parallel bars, at the Junior Olympic National Championships. He is competing for Michigan, where he is coached by Kurt Golder.

Selection Procedures
Men and Women
Qualification: 98 men and 98 women — top eight federations/teams (40 gymnasts) at the 2011 World Championships; top four federations/teams (20 athletes) based on team rankings at the 2012 Olympic Test Event; number of places as needed (maximum 18 men/12 women) are allocated to the individual event medal winners (gold, silver, bronze) by name at the 2011 World Championships, provided they have participated in three events for men/two events for women and are not members of the top-eight-ranked teams; a number of places as needed (maximum nine) are nominated by the FIG to ensure a male and female gymnast from the host country, provided they competed in the 2011 World Championships (based on final all-around rankings), and that each continent is represented (Africa, America, Asia and Europe, by two; and Oceania, by one); and one from the IOC Tripartite Commission.

NOTE: For the Olympic Games, athletes must be at least 16 years of age in the year of competition; the team now features five gymnasts; and the final list of individual qualifiers will not be published until after the conclusion of the test event. Also, the top 24 men’s and women’s teams at the 2010 World Championships qualified for the 2011 World Championships.

Qualification events: 2011 World Championships, Tokyo, Japan, Oct. 8-16; 2012 Olympic Test Event, London, England, Jan. 10-13.

Olympic gymnastics disciplines and events/apparatus
Men: team, all-around and individual events (floor exercise, pommel horse,still rings, vault, parallel bars, horizontal bar)
Women: team, all-around and individual events (vault, uneven bars, balance beam, floor exercise)

Rhythmic
Qualification. Individual: 24 gymnasts — top 15 based on performances in the all-around at the 2011 World Championships; top five based on performances in the all-around at the 2012 Olympic Test Event; three wild card selections by the FIG to ensure athletes from the host country and each continent are included; and one from the IOC Tripartite Commission. Maximum two per country.

Group: 12 groups (six gymnasts per group); top six groups based on performances at the 2011 World Championships; top four groups based on performances at the 2012 Olympic Test Event; and two spots allocated by the FIG to ensure that the host country and at least three continents are represented. Medals are awarded in individual all-around and group; the four events for individual rhythmic are hoop, ball, clubs, and ribbon; for group, ball (five gymnasts) and ribbon (three)/hoop (two). Athletes must be at least 16 years of age in the year of the competition to compete in the Olympic Games.

Qualification events: 2011 World Championships, Montpellier, France, Sept. 19-26; 2012 Olympic Test Event, London, Jan. 16-18.

Olympic gymnastics disciplines and events/apparatus
Individual: all-around (hoop, ball, clubs, and ribbon)
Group: all-around [ball (five gymnasts) and ribbon (three)/hoop (two)]

Trampoline
Qualification. 16 men and 16 women — top eight men and women based on performances at the 2011 World Championships; top five men and five women based on performances at the 2012 Olympic Test Event; two gymnasts are nominated by the FIG to ensure athletes from the host country and each continent are included; and one from the IOC Tripartite Commission. Athletes must be at least 18 years of age in the year of competition to compete in the Olympic Games.

Qualification events:  2011 World Championships, Birmingham, England, Nov. 16-19;2012 Olympic Test Event, London, Jan. 12-13.

Olympic gymnastics disciplines and events/apparatus
Men and Women

Key dates
  • Aug. 17-20, 2011: Visa Championships – St. Paul, Minn. (M/W/R) 1
  • Sept.19-26, 2011: World Championships – Montpellier, France (R) 2
  • Oct. 8-16, 2011: World Championships – Tokyo, Japan (M/W) 1, 2
  • Oct. 14-30, 2011: Pan American Games – Guadalajara, Mexico (M/W/R/T)
  • Nov. 16-19, 2011: World Championships – Birmingham, England (TT) 2
  • Jan. 10-18, 2012: Olympic Test Event – London, England 2 [Jan. 10-13 (M/W); Jan. 12-13 (TR); Jan. 16-18 (R)]
  • Feb. 2-4, 2012: Winter Cup Challenge – Las Vegas, Nev. (M)
  • March 2, 2012: Nastia Liukin Supergirl Cup  – TBD (W) 1
  • March 3, 2012: AT&T American Cup – TBD (M/W) 1
  • March 16-18. 2012: Pacific Rim Championships – TBD USA (M/W/R/T) 1
  • April 19-21, 2012: NCAA Championships – Norman, Okla. (M)
  • April 20-21, 2012: NCAA Championships – Seattle, Wash. (W)
  • May 19, 2012: CoverGirl Classic –, TBD (W) 1
  • June 7-10, 2012: Visa Championships – St. Louis, Mo. 1
  • June 28-July 1, 2012: U.S. Olympic Team Trials for Gymnastics – San Jose, Calif. (M/W) 1
  • July 27-Aug.12, 2012: Olympic Games – London, England (M/W/R/TR) 1
M=men; W=women; R=rhythmic; TR=trampoline; TT=trampoline and tumbling
1 Event has television coverage on NBC Sports and/or Universal Sports
2 Qualifying event for the 2012 Olympic Games
 
Communications Contact
Leslie King
317-829-5656