This past weekend was the 2019 American Cup, a FIG All-Around World Cup series event.
The competition, in my opinion, had many “AHHH” moments and also many “EWWW” moments”!
Check out the list of my “AHHHS” & “EWWWS”.
Do you agree?
1.I am honored to be an American citizen and respect our National Anthem but either the version that was sung or the individual singing it at this year’s competition was not the best choice by the event organizers!
2. I am all for self expression BUT when something you wear or have done to your body detracts from the presentation of your routine then something needs to be done. For example, the tattoos on Bart Deurloo’s (NED) legs were extremely distracting for me. Especially the tattoo of someones face on the back of his leg just below his buttocks. His tattoo sleeve was fine but the rest, well…NO.
3. Talking about personal expression…again I am all for it BUT when it is distracting, something needs to change. For example, hairy arm pits. I get that you are a man and it is natural BUT when you see more arm pit hair than anything else, either trim it back or shave it!
4. Pommel Horse, I just don’t like it!
5. It is GREAT to watch a dynamic Bars routine with many release skills BUT then to only get disappointed with a lower difficulty level skill for a dismount. Like the routine from Ellie Black (CAN). Yes, the dismount is difficult BUT not up to the standard of most others.
6. I was a little disappointed with Gracie McCallum’s (USA) Bars routine. I think that she was nervous which resulted in a slow, non-aggressive routine for her.
7. Since we are talking about Bars, it appears to me that China isn’t the powerhouse on Bars that they used to be. Yufei Lu’s Bar routine didn’t impress me at all!
8. The Netherlands’ Beam routines in the past have been very unique & creative and were competitive with other athletes from around the world. The routine from Sanna Veerman was not good at all.
9. Sam Mikulak was on his way to winning the 2019 American Cup until he pulled a “Mikulak”! What is a “Mikulak”? Well, it is when you are having an AMAZING competition to only go to your last event, begin your routine and then make a major error that knocks you out of first place! Sam lost by 0.001. OUCH!!
10. I was not impressed with much of the Floor choreography from the Women. BUT I was surprised by the BLAH choreography from the US Women. In my opinion, the US choreography is usually very strong but these routines didn’t demonstrate that to me. Lets hope that it is because it is early in the year and they will get used to their routines and really show them off at Nationals and Worlds!
11. Finally, the level of difficulty from the foreign athletes was very disappointing! The US athletes were significantly more prepared and the level of their difficulty was world class. I think the only athlete that was close to being competitive with the US Men or Women was Mai Murakami (JPN)! She placed first on Floor with this routine.
1.Sam Mikulak ROCKED his floor routine and had AMAZING landings! And what about those tumbling pass, WOW!
2. Since we are talking about landings, Yul Moldauer is a human dart! His landings were solid on EVERYTHING!
3. Lets continue to ride the Moldauer wave. His form is exceptional, the speed he performs his skills at is high velocity and the height he achieves on his tumbling is through the roof. Not to mention the precision of his handstands on Parallel Bars!
4. In her Senior debut, Leanne Wong EXPLODED into the spot light with this vault!
5. James Hall (GBR) had an amazing save on his Japanese Press on Floor was pure muscle! His hands slid further apart on the floor and he managed to muscle through to hold the skill.
6. Kim Bui did a gorgeous Bhardwaj (full twisting Pak salto) on Bars. It is nice to see different skills being performed than the usual release skills on bars! If you are not sure what the skill looks like, it is her 4th release skill from high bar down to low bar.
7. How about Leanne Wong’s connections on Bars; low bar to high bar, high bar to low bar, low bar to high bar? AWWW-SOME!!
8. I am loving the back dive mount on Beam! I am sure I will get sick of it like the wolf turn on Beam BUT for now, I LOVE it.
9. HUGE shout out to the female judge from (GBR) who was judging the Men’s competition! Women make up less than 1% of the Men’s Judges and Men make up less than 1% of the Women’s Judges (% is a complete guess) in the US and World.
10. There is something cool about the look of German Giants. Christian Baumann (SUI) does them on High Bar toward the end of his routine.
11. I thought the blue leotard worn by Leanne Wong (USA) was GORG-EOUS! The back was just as stunning.
12. WHAT??!! A triple twisting double layout off High Bar! One of the most difficult dismounts performed on High Bar done very well by Yul Mouldauer.
13. And finally…I know that I knocked the choreography of the US women BUT check out the super difficult and amazing performed tumbling by Leanne Wong (USA)!