Monday, 28 July 2014

News and Stuff

Commonwealth Games are taking place, and only 5 days until Classics! And less than 3 weeks to YOG. Finally, competitions!

One of the big stories to emerge from CWG so far is the withdrawal of Victoria Moors, who was replaced with Victoria Kayen-Woo. Gymnastics Canada made a statement on this two days later which you can see here (click EN at the top). This is, well, a little dodgy. First, hurray that it doesn't appear to be injury. It's not surprising and is actually commendable if the statement is deliberately vague due to personal issues Victoria is facing, or mental block/anxiety. We don't need to delve deeper. It's just a little odd in that if the camp prior to Glasgow was to show readiness, why was she picked? The tone of the statement seems a little punishing if that's the correct term, rather than supportive. I also find it a little strange that she did not hang around to support her teammates, but that could well be because her credentials were then needed for the other Victoria and suitable accommodation was not found, or it wasn't her own wish to stay. After all, it is extremely expensive to get a last-minute Transatlantic flight. Anyway, wishing her a speedy return to top form and all systems go for Nanning.

In crunchily stale news, Gabby Douglas has found a new home. A temporary one, Nia Dennis' gym Buckeye Gymnastics. An interesting choice, not least because both gymnasts are quite similar and in more ways than the blindingly obvious. They are both lean with long lines, but powerful and springy. Decently strong tumbling, high-flying on bars, good flexibility. They could push each other to work harder. However, this could be another trial period and seeing as the last one with her star coach who got her to the top didn't work out, I'm very hesitant about this one.

It's not for us to criticise her choice. It's her life and there is obviously stuff in the background and more than likely other motivations that we're just not aware of. However, it's also hard not to criticise her choice. No matter her achievements, she can't be the centre of a gym and a coach's attention when he has a crowd of other elites with strong Rio prospects. I'm quite disappointed with Gabby's move as it's obvious she is massively talented and didn't reach her peak. On the other hand, I'm also quite disappointed in Chow with the news of his dodgy contracts for elites. I hope that Gabby thrives in her new environment and finds the motivation to stick with it if that's what she wants. But I'm not holding my breath for this fabulous comeback now.

I'm picking up tiny bits of CWG on twitter - Becky Downie nailed her bars routine which will more than likely be the highlight of the whole competition for me. I love the fact that she's getting more consistent and shaping up splendidly for worlds.

It's very sad that The Couch Gymnast appear to have lost their archives, here's hoping they can recover them. It's nice to see them back - and thrilling to see The Gymternet with my favourite writer/blogger Lauren Hopkins at the helm. It's shaping up to be something special I think and I'll definitely be registering for the message boards.

Counting down the days to Classics? What do you think of Gabby's move? She's the third top girl to move this year but will be the only one to face actual flak over it - is this deserved?


  1. No its not deserved because Chow did something illegal and shady to USAG and there is NEVER an excuse for that, including the lousy one his supporters are giving. I don't want to get personal but I met Gabby when she was out in Pitts. a few weeks ago and she talked enthusiastically about how great it was to be back in the gym at the elite level and I believe that the feeling of just working hard in the gym is truly a [nostalgic and] genuine thing for every gymnast even if their "comeback" is not. She said that conditioning in LA definitely made it easier and we can all see that she was indeed exercising in California because there's no way she could've gotten back into such fabulous fitness so fast if she had just been living up her celebrity lifestyle.

    I think gabby is very defensive of her mother and is the sort of kid who's not going to criticize her publicly...ever. She knows best what she needs for her career but she also trusts her mom a lot and I imagine that even though the break with Chow was tough, when your parents are advising/commanding you to do something because they feel their child is being exploited (Chow's contracts) then that child will simply listen.Honestly, I would. If Natalie Douglas was as furious with Chow as the rumors say, after he handed her those documents to sign, then I'm pretty sure it wasn't even a matter of convincing Gabby to leave, it was more like "get up, lets go we're outta here" ya kno? B/c gabby knew before hand that Chow had other elites since she's was at P&G's last year to see their potential so leaving couldn't have been for lack of attention, especially when he made good progress with her in a short amount of time. She is more intelligent than her detractors give her credit for and she always takes initiative when she feels she isn't improving enough (wasn't that the point of moving to Chow's in 2010? her mother didn't think that up...). Coming back she has been nothing but realistic about how hard its going to be, so her leaving Chow's reeks of Mama Douglas's influence. Gabby gets along with anyone so long as they reciprocate i.e Anna Li in 2011 when the rest of the team was treating her 'meh', and Flately, Gowey and Vasquez hardly look like people to give into or stir up drama so I think they were all as cool with her as Nia Dennis is now.

    Chow made her an AA star but with so much potential still there, other coaches can teach her how to properly vault, give accuracy to her tumbling, and stability to her beam work. Contrary to belief, Chow is not god and I believe she respected him but she never was a Chow's girl the way Idaho-born Shawn was.

    1. There's a good few reasons flying around...a strong one is not being willing to share Chow/train alongside several other elites in the limelight. Others would be issues with her mother, the contracts, mutual decision that it wasn't working out etc. etc. It could well be a combination.

      Chow built on an already strong foundation. It was wrong of Gabby to disparage her previous coaching and never acknowledge them at all...she didn't arrive in Iowa as a weak Level 7. What he really mastered with her was pacing. A total failure at 2011 Nationals, getting stronger for worlds but very much a nobody, to come out of nowhere at American Cup, overtake Jordyn later on in the season again, and then, still battling inconsistency, snatch the best two prizes in London on the days it mattered most. It was really phenomenal to watch her pacing in motion. I've no doubt other coaches can eke talent out of her...she oozes it anyway. It's the combination of mental game that's important too, and Chow seemed like such a fantastic fit for that. We will see.

      There are always gym hoppers but it would be nice to see stability from Gabby if this comeback is for real. It wasn't her first choice...she was turned down by at least two, Kelli Hill's and Parkettes.

    2. Other than Priessman, who is the other elite to jump gyms?

    3. not many at this moment but in the past it was common. keri strugg, dominique moceanu, vanessa atler, sabrina vega, katelyn ohashi, Ivana Hong

    4. Oh duh! That was so long ago I totally forgot. Thanks

    5. I heard that it was Gabby's mom who was complaining about Gabby not getting enough attention or whatnot

    6. Yeah it's what I've heard too. I sincerely hope there was more to it than that, I think it's quite likely there were several factors.

    7. Oh, yeah, I've heard there was more to it than that too, I was saying I heard it was Gabby's mom with the problem with attention and not Gabby.

  2. Tbh I'm so over the Gabby news. Never really enjoyed her gymnastics and am not too keen on her personality from what I see of her out of the gym, so I don't really care where she is. If she comes back, she comes back, but if not, the US still has bucketloads of talent, so whatever. I'd like to see Lexie and Brenna get some time in the limelight...

    That statement by USAG was pretty bizarre. It definitely wasn't a great tone and sounded pretty harsh. I'm now thinking, wonder if they regret it? Surely an off-form Moors who sounded fine on twitter who has had loads of competition experience would still be better for the team scores than Woo. All credit to her but she doesn't have Moors' difficulty. I wonder if Canada is now regretting this after day 1 of CWG.. never did I think Wales would be ahead of Canada! Canada's bars scores were dreadful. All in all the CWG difficulty looks really low.. Australia is second overall after day 1 with 2 FTYs and a layout yurchenko...... and poor Lauren Mitchell doesn't seem to be able to catch a break, sounds like her shoulder is injured again.

    1. Now that Day 2 has come and gone without a team medal for CAN, I daresay their federation deeply regrets the decision to boot Moors, although it sounds like Black was the only competition-ready gymnast. Goodness knows what's going on there. Perhaps they're being trained to peak at Worlds, and CWG was only a warm-up?

      I don't know what to make of the Moors situation. I have a vivid imagination, and I'm trying not to let it run wild.

      Gabby is yesterday's (tabloid) news. As we say in Chinese, "好走不送!" ("Good riddance," or, if you prefer, "Don't let the door hit your backside!") Hm, I'll bet that phrase has crossed Liang Chow's mind more than once in recent weeks.

  3. Off topic but its whatever because gabby decision is over with so people should look ahead and see what happens because I really think Gabby might wanted more attention or maybe even needed more attention.

    So anyway I want to talk about world's

    Some people say Simone Kyla and Mykayla are locks which I agree. But what about brenna dowell.. she can be a lock...I see a three way competition between Kocian, Gowey, and Baumann.. There actually kind of similar and I think could hold the same spots but I think Madison is better on bars than the other two also I wanna know would she take one or two of the three.. Also I think everyone is kinda overlooking Ernst and the spot she could actually fill so the three way comp could turn into four way...I also wanna know what people think about a possible Lexie vs Brenna..I think it would be based on how Lexie is doing and how she can keep her floor difficulty value up.. how about an amanar, maybe not but I don't know..
    Tell me what u think please

    1. Brenna could be...much more so since Ebee is out. It's so hard to know. She was rough around the edges, if she has sharpened up she could easily outclass Lexie I think who has never really looked strong as a senior.

      Ernst is inconsistent, with execution issues. She certainly could be in the mix but I see her as more of an alternate.

    2. I agree, Ernst could do very well but usually counts huge errors on beam and floor. The beam rotation is weakest rotation for USA, so an inconsistent beamer doesn't make much sense. We'll see how she looks after classics.

      Her bars are good and consistent, but I think Ross, Kocian, Biles and Dowell already outscore her. Even if Ernst beats Dowell and Gowey on bars, they other pieces to offer for TF.

    3. Thanks and I forgot to ask do you see Great Britain entering the big four and making it the big five and what are there odds of them getting on the TF podium

    4. I'll join the conversation of Great Britain! I definitely think they are going to join the top nations this quad, and they have some great Espoirs like Louise McColgan who I'm SO excited about (please Scotland don't secede!!) who can help them stay there.
      I personally think they'll take the bronze at Worlds this year (at this point anyway). I think it will the the USA and Romania in gold and silver with GB in third. China will have to rely on two potentially scary vaults and a weak floor, and that's not even taking headcase potential on the other two events (especially beam where both AA gymnasts at Worlds last year fell) into account. And who knows what the heck Russia will be like come October.

    5. I think GB is on the cusp. To win a medal at worlds since the 2009 code, teams have needed to score above 174-ish. The big four are consistently above 170 while close nations (Japan, Italy, Great Britain) are usually around high 160s. GB has broken 170 twice now in team finals competition, in London 2012 and Sofia (Euros) 2014. I don't believe they were mid 170s though.

      I believe China is going to pull silver based on their difficulty. Sure they have to hit their routines, but so does everyone else. Only the Americans and Romanians seem to go clean in team competition and China still has greater difficulty than GB.

    6. Romania is slowly improving bars, and should hopefully manage three 14+ routines at worlds and Iordache scored 14.5ish at Euros. China also got their d scores nerfed with this new code. Taking vault and floor into account, plus Romania's better track record for hitting, I say Romania will edge China out for silver. Great Britain could very well overtake China for bronze too. They have a solid vault and beam rotation, they could almost match China on bars, and they have arguably better floor. GB is also consistent. Russia is in the mix too i suppose.... but with a still inexperienced team, reliance on inconsistent members (Paseka Komova Siridonova) and weak floor and vault to boot, I suspect that they will be pushed out of the medals.

      Back to the USA team. Biles Skinner (who would have thought last year that shed be considered a lock) Ross Dowell = going. 3 amanars and 3 decent floors. Ross will do do her pet events. this leave 2 spots for 2 bars and beam, where simone and dowell could both step in on one event or both. Really, only Gowey, Kocian and Baumann fit the mold. If Gowey hits, she's in and could do both events and maybe more, based on the training progress we've seen. So it would seem that it comes down to who can improve their 2nd event more, beam for Kocian and bars for Baumann. Kocian was 2nd on both last year at night 1 nationals so I think she has a slight edge. Or dowell and simone might out score both on bars and beam respectively.

    7. The loss of 0.2 CV for E pirouettes really does suck for China, but they really are still ahead of Romania and Russia. Yao presented two variations of a 7.0 routine for Nationals, Huang Huidan has a 6.8 routine and Shang Chunsong has a 6.7 routine. China really has to keep 2/3 gymnasts on the beam to stay ahead and the competition at nationals was fierce, I think everyone stayed on for the beam final so I think it is in the cards.

      I agree about Justin's USA team. I am excited about Gowey's potential, but she hasn't been mentioned by Marta whereas she has talked about the other six you mentioned. Gowey could be quite close to 25 in difficulty based on what I've seen from her videos. When I tallied max D score totals for USA, Baumann makes the team over Gowey for her beam score.

    8. GB is NOT consistent. They've always been headcaser's its just that traditionally they don't upset the podium standing so no one ever cared to notice. Only once ever have they as a team went error free (2010 Euros). At CWG, though they lacked Tunney (a mediocre AAer anyways), none of the other girls could score a half decent AA score in the final. They are never consistent on beam throughout a week long competition and everyone but Fragapane scores 13's on floor (additionally Harrold and Downie are inconsistent on bars, but more so Harrold lately). The bigger issue ofcourse is that GB has difficulty but they lack good execution: its nothing but unpointed toes, flexed feet, bend legs, and leg seps everywhere. They're best e-scores are always on vault, otherwise you're looking at low to mid 7's and a couple low 8's, unless they fall which then means they'll get even lower, as we're witnessing right now from the all around final at CWG. Only four (seniors, mind you) people scored above a 55 (and three are just BARELY); A dismal competition if i ever saw one stacked with so much potential talent...

    9. Well, you do have a point. Gb hasn't been on my radar for long, until the last couple years, but I believe they really proved themselves at Euros this year with consistent strong performances. They also seem to receive a deduction for not being a big four nation.

      Gym Bot, Yes they have upped the d scores, but China did not pull them off last year in major comp. 2013 worlds china had plenty of falls, more so than nationals. Vault and floor is what will hurt them. If Romania can gain a point on both events, (which I could see as reasonable, with the upgrades mentioned in an interview and a even more fully recovered Bulimar) then they are definitely in it. China's vault situation still seems shaky too. Plus, if it comes down to who can hit on that day, I would put my money on Romania first. I think it will be close. I might be biased, because I love Romania and really want a team medal for them that they haven't gotten in years, but this is gymnastics and subjective, so we are allowed to have our own opinions and bias. Also is it just me, or did the judges seem harsh on China's E scores last year? That might affect them too.

    10. In my opinion it is the big four plus one. By that i mean China, Romania, Russia and the USA battling it out for podium and GB just outside consistently getting fifth. This is only the beginning, in the future I definitively see a big five although at the moment GB have to get their consistency up (beam), and difficulty scores (floor). I do think that this year will not be their year to join the big four but I do think that with the juniors (may I remind everyone that the juniors/seniors were practically the opposite) turning into seniors it could very well become the big five.Did they just get lucky at euro's?

      Also, I am looking forward to seeing China. Not so much at this years worlds but with the years coming and the Olympics approaching. They have finally realized that they need to upgrade on floor and vault. One of the smartest ideas in my opinion was to change the national code to increase their D scores although they should be careful. I think that the main issue the Chinese are struggling with is yes difficulty but the main problem is artistry. Yes they are flexible but think about it do they showcase it enough in their routines? they should use their bars and beam skills and make their floor look as graceful as Ana Porgras. Upgrades are happening, difficulty is building, but what about consistency? (one of the main reasons why I don't see China in the mix for silver)

      I feel like Russia should take a bit of a break. I mean how many injured athletes do they have? (Grishina, Afan, Musty, Komova...) The list keeps building. That's practically the 2012 Olympic team right there. I think that they should give the newbies a chance at worlds and focus more on the Olympics and next years worlds. By then HOPEFULLY the veterans and real stars will be able to shine. I mean even if Musty is healthy for worlds there is no way she can obtain the same difficulty as before. And even if a healthy Komova makes it to this years worlds, her events are limited not to mention consistency issues (her last major international was the 2012 Olympics). I hope the veterans get a chance to rest, the newbies get a chance to shine, and hoping the best for next year.

      Romania's case is very much like China's. They realized their weak event and they are making it stronger. I feel that with building consistency/difficulty on bars they are losing what used to be their best event: beam. Iordache has loads of difficulty on the event but consistency is not present and unfortunately for her she is not Douglas and cannot hit when it matters most: cough AA Olympic cough. She is honestly, from what I have seen one of the most unluckiest gymnasts. I can see Bulimar improving in the next few years. She is very similar to Ross, very consistent and clean but not difficult enough to get gold. If everyone is healthy, may be too early to make predictions but i can see the Olympic team for Romania be:
      team: Iordache, Bulimar, Munteanu (hope I spelled it right), Jurca, and Izbasa or Iridion (spelling?)
      alterante(s): Izasa/Iridion, Stanila

    11. Continuing from the previous message:

      Now for the USA. The Gabby stories are getting tiring. She leaves, goes away, comes back, then leaves again. It's like your mom or dad bringing/picking you up from school. Now to the serious gymnasts. Simone needs to stay the way she is. Keep upgrading, stay clean, get even more consistent. The only advice I can give her and her coach is not to upgrade too fast because that can cause injury. Also build up difficulty on your weaker events. She can hit 15+ on floor and 15.7-.8 on vault but she can only get low 14s on beam and mid to high 14s on bars. She should really focus on upgrading bars and beam. Ross NEEEEEEDS to upgrade if she wants to be a contender for the Olympics in 2016 there is no way she can just rely on consistency because you need the package. She should be upgrading much faster. I don't know what she has in store difficulty speaking for the years to come but for now I don't really see her making that team. Skinner should cut back on upgrades until she cleans all of her skills, improves on difficulty and flexibility. I have no words on Baumann, Kocian, or Ernst. Dowell I feel like is the Grishina of the US, she is not given the opportunities she deserves therefor making her a mediocre and demotivated gymnast. I mean getting kicked of the world team to an alternate that hurts a lot. Martha wanted to give Maroney a chance to compete AA but is worlds really a good place to start? Gowey is quite interesting, she has caught my eye. But I am not yet convinced, she has difficulty but can she execute it cleanly and consistently. I don't even think she should be considered for worlds until we see her compete at Classics and I am assuming at Nationals. She definitively deserves attention but not as much as being placed on the world team just yet. Anyone agree with me? I am very curious as to why Hundly isn't in the mix for worlds. Is she injured because I have not heard any news of her competing at Classics. It's too bad Lexy isn't blooming as the senior she should be. Anyways for the world team now:
      Team: Ross, Biles, Skinner, Kocian, Dowell, and Baumann
      Alternates: Ernst, Gowey, Preissman/Hundly (if not injured)

      All five countries definitively have locks for sure:
      China: Ziyi (Jinnan), Shangsung
      Romania: Iordache, Bulimar, Munteanu
      GB: Downie, Tunney
      USA: Biles, Ross, Skinner
      Russia: Musty (from what they are saying she will compete regardless of what I said)

      Finally to close this long comment I think I should mention that there is a new team on the rise. Not necessarily for a big six or anything but to be the next Italy or Japan: Brazil. Alexander Alexandrov has been doing some pretty good work over there and it's shaping up nicely.

      Best of luck to all the teams and I am looking forward to the future of all these teams.

    12. @ Justin, I agree China got nerfed with the loss of 0.2 CV bonus for E+E pirouettes. Still, Yao has 7.0, Huang 6.8 and Shang 6.7. They'll do fine on that rotation.

      Like you said, and Catherine has blogged about before, China will struggle compared to the rest of the big 4 on VT and FX. I bet they will have a vaulting lineup by Worlds, but how consistent, I'm not sure. I looked back a few competitions and it seems China suffered a fall or major problem on Vault in 2012 and 2011. It's too bad they dismissed/retired Wang Yan. Her vaults would be good for this team and she could also contribute a floor.

      On FX, they have two routines that will score in the low 14s. So you could be right, Romania can make up perhaps a point and 1/2 to 2 points on VT and FX. We'll just have to wait and see what happens

  4. I've heard Kocian beat Ross at the last camp. That means she's gotten better all around which bodes well for her world team selection.

    1. it doesn't mean anything tho. Like, Dowell beat Ross in all the verification camps on bars last year, but we all know shes not the better bars worker, plus when the legit competitions began she couldn't replicate or beat Ross' scores. But seriously, Ross often gets beaten in camp verification lol i dunno what's wrong with her. Skinner even beat Biles in one of them (but I heard biles and Ross didn't perform AA).

    2. Kocian beat Ross on bars at Jesolo this year (by 0.05 but she still beat her). Kocian, at the time had a higher D score, and I wouldn't be surprised if that were still the case with the lack of upgrades shown from Kyla.

      Don't underestimate Kocian. It's not 2013, Kyla has a lot more competition this year.

      Kyla gets nervous at verifications (Jenny has said it a few times) and she's hasn't been increasing her D scores when others have. It doesn't mean she doesn't bring it in competition, but it also doesn't mean others, like Kocian, can't catch her.

    3. Well Ross just beat Kocian by a whole lotta points at Classics so that's what im talking about... there is no one more consistent/ clean than her. Kocian still has a chance to join Ross at world's as a 2nd UB/BB specialist but now Ashton Locklear is looking like she may steal that spot. Kocian was over scored on bars btw.

  5. This talk about teams is interesting, but what are people's AA opinions?

    Biles is certainly the favorite for gold. Iordache, Jinnan, Ross, Mustafina, Are the REAL contenders for the other two medals. I heard people throw names around like Gowey, but I doubt she will do AA this year. I think the world is going to catch up to Ross unless she does something big this year. Iordache's improves bars, tidied up vault, and potential upgrades (she was training the lay full on beam plus a 1.5 step out on floor) will give her a decent shot for a medal, and Romania normally cleans up between Euros and worlds. Plus she hasn't been injured yet this year and her consistency has gotten better. Jinnan could also do well with all of the upgrades. Just hoping she hits, but I think Iordache has the edge being stronger on all events except bars. mustafina just bounced back from injury, but then again, I think she has proved to us not to count her out many times.
    Biles, Iordache, Jinnan

    1. I definitely agree on Biles. I think the top finishers will resemble the Antewerp finishers. The top part of the field will include Yao, Shang, Iordache, Steingruber, Ferrari, and Ross/2nd American. I would add Bulimar in here too. As to who has the best chance for a medal, I have no idea.

      If Ross gets her 2013 bars back, I bet Gowey can't catch her. That said, I do believe Gowey presents a real threat to Ross for the AA spot as well as threat to Alyssa Baumann to get on the team for balance beam. Also, I just heard Priessman is out for classics. If she is out for the rest of the season, there really isn't anyone else but Skinner to include in a FX line up. I think she finally has her ticket to worlds.

    2. After Classics, forget Gowey for AA. Dowell and Skinner no longer look like locks anymore. IF Dowell can rebound after her injury then she will be fine, but who knows, and how full will she be back? I thought Skinner would be a little crisper, but it is an improvement I suppose. Now, I think USA is set on beam, as Biles proved herself usable there. Ashton Locklear really made a case for herself. She could be great on bars and be a solid third on beam after Ross and Biles. She definitely jumped into the mix. If Gowey can get her Amanar however, (it looked alright and well rotated in PT) she could be good because if Brenna is out or can't do vault, and if Skinner doesn't go, Gowey's Amanar could help a lot. She would be a good choice for beam. Kocian made a great case for herself and if she gets beam together thats another plus, but she could go for bars alone. Baumann needs to improve a lot on Classics in order to contend.

      Honestly, it could depend all on Dowell's state. Without her, the need for Gowey's Chowmanar, a third UB routine and another/Skinner's floor increases. However Marta might not risk Skinner or Gowey if Dowell is healthy. (Priessman's absence helps Skinner too)
      Without Dowell

      VT Biles Gowey Skinner/Ross
      UB Ross Kocian Locklear
      BB Ross Biles Kocian/Gowey
      FX Biles Skinner Ross/???

    3. So Dowell's bars were nutso. I think she was going for 6.9 total difficulty: Tweddle+Ehzova (F+D, 0.2 CV), toe-on 1/1+maloney+giant 1/1 (D+D+C, 0.3 CV), church+pak (E+D, 0.2 CV), VLW (E), assumed: full twisting DLO (E). Someone correct me here if I'm wrong. F1E3D4 = 3.7 + 0.7 CV + 2.5 Comp = 6.9. If she can actually do that set and her injury is such that she can vault, I'd want to take her. If she can only do that set by having the scariest form on her two LB transitions, then forget it. I thought she was only going to target 6.5 which she almost had at Acup?

      I want to hold out for nationals to see Gowey, in terms of AA. She'd be on the team for vault and beam for reasons you already pointed out, but she has a good amount of room to improve. The judges didn't give her full difficulty on beam (6.5 -> 6.3) or floor (5.9 -> 5.6). She also didn't attempt any of her bars connections.

      I would also hold out for Priessman, if her injury isn't so bad I would want her, or even Nichols for floor instead of Skinner. Skinner is great, but she is so prone to fall, I don't know if it worth the risk.

    4. Actually, Gowey could get up to a 6.1 of floor with both leaps and the spin and connection credited. If she gets her Amanar, she should definitely go to Worlds. But still, I don't think this is her year yet for AA. I think next year (and the following) is when she will truly shine after she gets her upgrades consistent and clean. She's in good hands though (Chow!). I'm sort of glad she hasn't burst fully onto the scene, for risk of burnout. When you think about it. She doesn't really have an event that is much weaker than the others. An Amanar/ solid DTY isn't bad at all. Good form, line, swing and potential for UB, just needs to connect. An already great beam routine in the works, and good potential on floor, plus decent artistry. Watch out Simone!

      Haha, yeah. It seems like every comp, we go in hearing that Skinner has cleaned up and we all set the bar so high for and even called her a lock. She should honestly stop bars or even beam to focus on the other events. Her coaches said that recently she has started to heed Marta's criticisms of form after ignoring them for so long.

    5. It's insane that Skinner's coaches only recently followed that advice! Did you hear that on the gymnastike series? I'm considering subscribing for more content based on how much gymnastics media I consume.

      Ahh, you're right on Gowey's FX at 6.1. If she gets the punch full this year, she could be higher. It's a bummer they downgraded her leaps but not Biles' switch 1/1 too. Overall she lost 0.7 on her D score. That or the fall on vault is all she needs to surpass Nichols.

      Douglas completed her upgrades between classics and visas, so maybe Chow intends the same with Gowey? I agree that she's not totally ready yet but I believe she might be college bound so I thought that this was her year.

    6. Gowey graduates 2016 ( verbally committed to UF), leaving time for her to go to Rio first. I think it would be wise to pace her slowly. Gabby upgraded quickly because the Olympics were fast approaching. Gowey has 2 years. Even then, is 3 weeks really enough time? I was never a high level gymnast so I don't really get how training feels and such.

      I heard the Skinner stuff indirectly from gymnastike. Someone said something. I heard that it was Skinner who didn't want to spend time cleaning up/pointing toes, but yes, the coaches always have some responsibility with everything the gymnast does. Skinner really needs to drop the Moors though. Its more trouble than its worth and it tires her out. She has other difficult passes she could use.

    7. Yeah I'm watching the Classic now - I found it on Gabriel McDonough's channel on youtube - just discovered Gowey is only 16. I thought she was a senior last year? Speaking of the classic, I feel like the hosts are discussing information that is more relevant to gymnastics.

      I think 3 weeks could be enough time. I've seen her potential upgrades from her training videos and camp videos, so she's been doing them. Perhaps she just chose the more consistent skills for this competition. Similarly, I expect Biles has more that she can do on bars.

    8. As usual, we will just have to wait and see. I feel like every time I make a prediction, I am completely wrong, or something like injury happens and completely surprises us.