Tuesday, 17 February 2009

Upcoming American Cup

It seems that the following will be competing at the American Cup on Saturday:

Brittany Rogers, Canada
Youna Dufournet, France
Kim Bui, Germany
Rebecca Downie, Great Britain
Koko Tsurumi, Japan
Amelia Racea, Romania
Kristina Goryunova, Russia
Bridget Sloan, USA
Jordyn Wieber, USA
Jessica Lopez, Venezuela
I am surprised to see only two gymnasts from the USA in the list, unless they plan on adding more last minute (which wouldn't surprise me).
Usually, I'm not a great fan of the American Cup, but it will be great to watch the new code in action with recognisable faces.
Rogers (who has already competed with the new code at the 2008 Elite Canada) has a very nice 1.5 yurchenko and great bars (including a Ray). I think she could surprise here. Her all around score at elite Canada was 56.350.

Youna Dufournet has also competed already under the new code, showing some crazy skills like an Arabian to scale. She scored 53.600 at the recent Sidijik cup, however this was counting mistakes on 3 apparatus. Even so, I don't see Dufourent taking the title from some of the girls with better execution, especially since she is not consistent.

Kim Bui is yet to compete this year (as far as I know). She missed out on the Olympic team last year and so may have had time for vast improvements. She has a very nice floor, tidy bars (when she hits) but quite simple vaults and less than impressive form on beam.

Downie is another gymnast who will be new to the code, but who made a splash at the Olympics by finishing 12th all around. Since then she's been working hard towards the American Cup and has been (as far as I know) without injury. Beckie is usually solid and I expect she will do well here. Her scores were generally below Bridget Sloan's but above Koko Tsurumi.

Koko Tsurumi has been getting a lot of attention of late after qualifying for the beam final and finishing 17th AA in Beijing. She is a neat and tidy gymnast who is lovely to watch, I'm looking forward to it!

Amelia Racea finished second on beam at the junior europeans last year, and fourth in the all around, behind Dufournet. However, there was a gap of 3.275 between 3rd and 4th place. Racea may feel better off in the new code, with slightly better execution than Dufourent and much more consistency.

Kristina Goryunova won the recent Voronin Cup, but generally does not score as well as Sloan, Weiber and Dufourent. She has a very nice beam set.

Bridget Sloan is likely to be a big hitter here, with the highest Olympic scores of all the former Olympians competing. She has rumoured to have upgrades too. As long as she hits, I can see a win for her here.

Jordyn Wieber competed well last year and was capable of higher all around scores than Racea and (sometimes) Dufourent. I think she'll do well here, but perhaps a little less well than under the previous code.

Jessica Lopez also competed in Beijing last year but finished 43rd in qualification.

I'm willing to predict:
1. Bridget Sloan
2. Jordyn Wieber
3. Brittany Rogers

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