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Downie Dominates Osijek with Full Sweep
(5 votes, average 5.00 out of 5)

Ellie Downie made history for Great Britain with a full sweep of the gold medals at the 2016 FIG World Challenge Cup, held this weekend in Osijek. Pictured: Ukraine's Oleg Vernyayev participates in the athletes' competition draw on Friday night.

Ellie Downie continued to make history for Great Britain with a full sweep of the gold medals at the 2016 FIG World Challenge Cup, held this weekend in Osijek.

Downie, 16, dominated with golds on women's vault and uneven bars and Saturday followed by the balance beam and floor exercise titles on Sunday. She is the first gymnast to sweep a World Cup event under its current rules. It was the best performance to date from Downie, whose combined total in Osijek would have resulted in a personal best 59.125 all-around score.

Ellie Downie (Great Britain)

"I really enjoyed being here," said Downie, who joined her sister Becky Downie to help Great Britain to a historic team bronze medal at last year's world championships. "Osijek is one of the best competitions I have ever had. I really enjoyed the whole experience. The crowd and the organization were great. Thank you all!"

The competition in Osijek attracted a competitive field from 25 nations, including Brazil, Canada, Great Britain, Russia Ukraine and the United States The organization was praised for its Friday night banquet held after qualifications, in which the gymnasts themselves drew their competition order for the weekend's finals.

Downie began her domination on women's vault, where she performed a double-twisting Yurchenko (14.975) and layout Podkopayeva (14.725) for a 14.850 average, comfortably topping Slovenia's Tjaša Kysselef (14.200 average) and Canada's Rose-Kayen Woo (13.638 average).

On uneven bars, Downie hit her 6.3D set much better than in qualification, although she was still a bit short on several handstands (front sole circle, pirouette to Maloney uprise to Tkatchev, toe full to piked Tkatchev to Pak; Maloney-half; double layout). Second place went to Russia's Seda Tutkhalyan, who earned the best execution score of the field (Maloney to Bhardwaj; Maloney-half; toe-on, toe-full to Tkatchev; elgrip giants to double front; 6.0D). Top qualifier Natalia Kapitanova of Russia had a beautiful routine going but was forced to settle for the bronze after overarching her toe-full before her full-twisting double dismount, which she landed extremely low.

Downie's most impressive performance of the finals was on balance beam, where she looked extremely confident in a rock solid routine, complete with stuck dismount (punch front, wolf; sStanding Arabian to sissone.; switch leap, switch side; double turn with slight wobble; ff, ff, layout; RO 2 1/2 twist; 6.4D).

Russia's Maria Kharenkova, the 2014 European champion, won silver over Tutkhalyan. Tutkhalyan, the top qualifier, had a wobble on her RO, layout full, but otherwise nailed her routine, although she played it safe by leaving the full-twist off her double pike dismount.

Downie hit her tumbling on floor exercise to execute a full sweep of the golds in Osijek: 1 1/2 to Arabian double front (almost stepped out); piked Arabian double front; 2 1/2, punch front; double pike). Natalia Kapitanova took silver with very clean execution and beautiful lines peformed to "Don Quixote" (piked full-in; 2 1/2 layout front; two whips to double tuck). First-year Ukrainian senior Yana Horokhova, the tiniest gymnast of the competition, won bronze with trademark beautiful Ukrainian gymnastics (tucked full-in; 2 1/2 twist; double tuck; double pike).

Downie's solid performance is a good omen for the British women, who will next try to accomplish another historic first next month as they aim for gold at the European championships next month in Bern.

In the men's competition, Ukrainian Oleg Vernyayev was the only double winner, taking golds on pommel horse and vault. Vernyayev, who competed all six events in qualification, missed his chance for a third gold on parallel bars after hitting his leg on his Bhavsar and having to jump off.

Russia had more success in the men's competition, with gold medals from Denis Ablyazin on still rings and from Emin Garibov on parallel bars. Garibov, who has been sidelined from major competition for the past several years with double shoulder injuries, was thrilled with his nailed routine, capped off by a stuck double front dismount.

Ablyazin aimed for the most ambitious routine in the floor finals (7.2D), but stumbled out of bounds on his triple-twisting front mount and then landed out of bounds on his layout double-double and piked Arabian double front, incurring .7 in neutral deductions that dropped him from first to seventh.

The floor title went to 2004 German Olympian Matthias Fahrig, who was extremely solid on his 6.7D set (double-twisting front to double front; piked Arabian double front, half out; piked Arabian double front; tucked Arabian double front). Two-time Israeli Olympian Alexander Shatilov won the silver with extremely clean tumbling, although he went out of bounds twice (layout Thomas; 1 1/2 to Randi; tucked double-double; front double full to Rudi; 2 1/2 to tucked front full; tucked full-in). American Steven Legendre took the bronze, mounting with a 2 1/2 to double front and throwing a rare 2 1/2-twisting double tuck, although he also went out of bounds on his piked Arabian double front.

On vault, American Paul Ruggeri won the silver behind Vernyayev with a RO half-on, double-twisting front and Yurchenko 2 1/2. Ukrainian Igor Radivilov, who was third on still rings, took another bronze. Radivilov crashed his piked Dragulescu (Ri 2) but stood up his Tsukahara double pike.

Cuban star Manrique Larduet won silver on parallel bars behind Garibov. Larduet landed his new dismount in qualification, a G-rated double front-full out, but opted for a regular half out in the final. American Sean Melton won bronze, sticking his double pike.

Turkish veteran Ümit Şamiloğlu won the high bar title with a Cassina (rather tucked) and Kolman, topping Ruggeri and first-day qualifier Oliver Hegi.

The FIG World Cup series continues May 13-15 in Varna, Bulgaria.

External Link: Official Website

2016 FIG World Challenger Cup
April 30-May 1, Osijek, Croatia

Women's Vault FinalDENDScoreAverage
1.Ellie Downie5.89.17514.97514.850
2.Tjaša Kysselef5.39.07514.37514.200
3.Rose-Kayen Woo5.08.92513.92513.638
4.Kirsten Beckett4.69.05013.650
5.Ema Kajić5.08.57513.57513.463
6.Sophie Braaten5.08.32513.32513.050
7.Hélody Cyrenne5.07.92512.92513.000
8.Dora Székely4.48.47512.87512.888
9.Jelena Stamenković4.28.45012.65012.813

Uneven Bars FinalDENDScore
1.Ellie Downie6.38.37514.675
2.Seda Tutkhalyan6.08.52514.525
3.Natalia Kapitonova6.48.05014.450
4.Rose-Kayen Woo5.68.12513.725
5.Ruby Harrold6.27.22513.425
6.Carolyne Pedro5.26.9000.311.800
7.Dorina Böczögő5.25.8750.310.775
8.Tzuf Feldon4.85.57510.375

Balance Beam FinalDENDScore
1.Ellie Downie6.18.85014.950
2.Maria Kharenkova6.38.62514.925
3.Seda Tutkhalyan6.48.25014.650
4.Rose-Kayen Woo5.88.35014.150
5.Adela Šajn5.38.62513.925
6.Ruby Harrold5.47.87513.275
7.Carolyne Pedro5.17.85012.950
8.Yana Horokhova5.76.27511.975

Women's Floor Exercise FinalDENDScore
1.Ellie Downie6.08.52514.525
2.Natalia Kapitonova5.88.30014.100
3.Yana Horokhova5.48.45013.850
4.Ruby Harrold5.38.37513.675
4.Paula Mejías5.68.07513.675
6.Carolyne Pedro5.68.02513.625
7.Dorina Böczögő5.78.1000.313.500
8.Kiristen Beckett5.38.02513.325

Men's Floor Exercise FinalDENDScore
1.Matthias Fahrig6.78.35015.050
2.Alexander Shatilov6.78.4750.214.975
3.Steven Legendre6.78.2750.114.875
3.Paul Ruggeri6.88.3750.314.875
5.Tomislav Marković6.28.62514.825
6.Ahmet Önder6.38.6000.114.800
7.Denis Ablyazin7.27.9250.714.425
8.Rok Klavora6.47.1500.113.450

Pommel Horse FinalDENDScore
1.Oleg Vernyayev6.98.32515.225
2.Sašo Bertoncelj6.58.70015.200
3.Slavomir Michnak6.38.45014.750
4.Filip Ude7.07.47514.475
5.Robert Seligman6.47.92514.325
6.Maxime Gentges6.18.02514.125
7.Oliver Hegi6.57.30013.800
8.Jay Thompson4.97.60012.500

Still Rings FinalDENDScore
1.Denis Ablyazin6.89.02515.825
2.İbrahim Çolak6.78.97515.675
3.Igor Radivilov6.98.60015.500
4.Manrique Larduet6.88.47515.275
5.Nikita Nagornyy6.58.42514.925
6.Eli Zahran6.58.40014.900
7.Sean Melton6.38.35014.650
8.Steven Legendre6.18.42514.525

Men's Vault FinalDENDScoreAverage
1.Oleg Vernyayev6.09.40015.40015.325
2.Paul Ruggeri5.89.15014.95014.838
3.Igor Radivilov6.48.0250.114.32514.725
4.Nikita Nagornyy6.09.2250.115.12514.638
5.Denis Ablyazin6.48.92515.32514.625
6.Andrey Medvedev6.08.2000.114.10014.513
7.Steven Legendre5.69.37514.97514.450
8.Vitālijs Kardašovs5.68.52514.12514.250

Parallel Bars FinalDENDScore
1.Emin Garibov6.79.05015.750
2.Manrique Larduet6.78.77515.475
3.Sean Melton6.48.47514.875
4.Oleg Vernyayev7.17.70014.800
5.Samuel Piasecký6.18.37514.475
6.İbrahim Çolak6.18.32514.425
7.Nikita Nagornyy6.87.52514.325
8.Norbert Dudás5.77.72513.425

High Bar FinalDENDScore
1.Ümit Şamiloğlu6.58.72515.225
2.Paul Ruggeri6.88.25015.050
3.Oliver Hegi6.58.20014.700
3.Tin Srbić6.68.10014.700
5.Manrique Larduet7.07.57514.575
6.Ahmet Önder5.98.37514.275
7.Pietro Giachino5.77.87513.575
8.Dávid Vecsernyés5.55.95011.450
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