USAG confirmed that Laurie Hernandez is indeed attending the November national team camp, as she alluded to on the Twitter Box. The camp roster features…nearly all the seniors, though the members of the world championship team do not have to attend. Jordan Chiles and Trinity Thomas are also not scheduled to make a cameo in this episode.
A couple discussion-worthy notes appeared in Nick Zaccardi’s piece about Laurie’s return: Laurie was not required to send video to verify her readiness before being invited to camp. I think that’s initially jarring because it’s so different from what we’re used to, though I don’t have a problem with there being an open invitation to past world/Olympic medalists to return to camp if they feel prepared. It shows trust in the athletes as though they are…aware human people rather than weird pets? “You’ve been here before, and I trust you to know whether you’re ready or not.”
It’s not a bye right onto the national team. It’s just a November camp. I wish it weren’t based on some rando conversation with Tom at nationals (if Laurie is auto-invited back, then all former medalists should be given the same consideration), but no issue with the actual move.
You know, obviously start with the most important news. Simone did a first pitch, electing to go for the back full in jeans, which puts it pretty high up the rankings right there because of her D score. You know she’s pissed that she landed it kind of short though.
Ideally, you would like to see your gymnastics first pitch take place in a single sequence and show good rhythm in connection. I’m not wild about how she had to wait for her Mistress of the Robes to deliver the ball to her after the back full, but we can work on it. She’s still got a year until she has to do her post-Olympics first pitches.
And pretty solid pitch as far as gymnasts go. I mean, she’s obviously never thrown anything in her life before, but we’ve seen it go a lot more tragically. And if you thought I was going to pass up any opportunity to revisit this…
Additional bonus points are also awarded to Simone for the use of hilarious height discrepancy.
B. Cottbus Nominative Roster
The 5th apparatus Olympic qualifier will be upon us in less than a month now, and the nominative roster for Cottbus has been released.
Post-worlds, we’re seeing those who are now in “Oh crap, I need this” mode kick it into gear, with Epke Zonderland on the list for high bar—along with Hidetaka Miyachi, as those two battle it out for the HB spot, currently tied on 85 points. At this point, I wouldn’t be surprised to see both of them get to the maximum of 90 points and have to go to a total score tiebreaker.
Tomas Gonzalez is also attending his first qualifier to do floor (going to be tough because Rayderley Zapata has that one nearly sewn up at this point, and is competing here). Gonzalez is currently 2nd alternate for the all-around spots from worlds, and his best path to the Olympics is likely two people ahead of him getting injured and not being able to go to Tokyo—or not being sent by their NOC.
The Chinese men are going ALL IN on an apparatus Olympic spot, and they’re definitely going to end up winning a couple of these events and heading to an intra-country tiebreak since each nation can earn only one spot per gender through apparatus world cups.
Following Russian Cup, High Priestess Valentina announced the Russian teams for this year’s world championships—at least until someone looks at her the wrong way and gets immediately retired for it.
For the women, the team is Angelina Melnikova, Lilia Akhaimova, Daria Spiridonova, Angelina Simakova, and Aleksandra Schekoldina. That’s about where I arrived in analyzing the Russian Cup results, which means something must be very wrong because Valentina and I agree and yet a red sun hasn’t even risen in the north. Continue reading Things Are Happening – August 30, 2019→