You’ve got to hand it to the organizers of the Stuttgart World Cup for their rockstar introductions of the gymnasts. The lights in the Porsche Arena are dimmed and the gymnasts presented one by one, making their appearance by running through a corridor formed by local gymnasts waving blue pom-poms while strobe lights flash and a steam machine shoots off smoke. The effect is totally cool.
1 - Simone Biles, USA,
2 - Ana Padurariu, Canada,
3 - Elisabeth Seitz, Germany,
Carolyne Pedro (BRA), FX: Arabian double front, small steps out of it. Double turn with leg at head. Switch ring. 1.5 to double tuck, keeps it in bounds. The sort of music you’d hear in a heist movie. Double full. Double pike, step back. 12.333.
Kim Bui (GER), FX: Split jump full. Lovely double layout. Tourjete full. Double tuck. A great piece of music for Kim, something the crowd can clap and bop along to. 2.5 to front pike, stuck. Double pike. Small bounces back on three of those passes, but whatever. A thoroughly enjoyable routine from start to finish. Fun fact: Kim Bui’s first Stuttgart World Cup was back in 2005.
Zsofia Kovacs (HUN), FX: Music is The Piano Guys’s “Michael Meets Mozart.” Hands down on double double tuck, but the audience recognizes it as a hard skill and applauds her. Full in to a Melnikova style landing. Same on double tuck to end. Well, it hasn’t been a horrible day for her, but she might have expected better of herself. She’s capable of better. 11.333.
Aliya Mustafina (RUS), FX: Arabian double front, stuck cold. Triple turn. Double tuck. Double turn with leg at head. Wonderful expression in this routine. She has the crowd positively hanging on her every move. 1.5 to front layout full, essentially stuck. Double full. Well, that was as well as she’s currently capable of doing that routine. Good for her! 13.2.
Hitomi Hatakeda (JPN), FX: Techno mix that gets the crowd clapping. Wolf turn double that she doesn’t complete, but that seems to be part of her choreography. Full in tuck, bounces out of bounds with both feet. Double turn with leg at head. 2.5 to punch front. Tourjete full. Double pike. 12.3. Hatakeda receives her score with a shrug.
Lorette Charpy (FRA), FX: Double turn with leg at head. Running double front tuck, stuck. Double tuck second pass, well landed. A very flowy, graceful exercise despite the wolf double turn snuck in before her double pike to finish. Great day for Lorette. 12.566.
Elisabeth Seitz (GER), FX: Another great music selection by the German team, this clappable, kind of 1920s swing piece that’s been infused with a little modern day techno. Also fun is how she draws a heart in the air before her first pass. Arabian double front, small hop forward. 1.5 to double tuck. Double pike. Everyone loves it. 13.2 moves her into the lead right now.
Ana Padurariu (CAN), FX: A rumba, I believe, and she pulls it off extremely well. Double pike. Tourjete half to switch ring. 2.5 to to punch front. Double full. Excellent finish! 13.2, and she takes the lead! Guaranteed second at least…
Simone Biles (USA), FX: Full twisting double layout, excellent. Comes very close to going OOB on her Biles, but just stays in. Front layout full walkout to full in. Finally does go OOB on her double double closing pass, but I think she can be forgiven. 14.9.
Carolyne Pedro (BRA), BB: Split leap mount. Switch to Tourjete. Split half. Bhs, layout (fall). Punch front (fall). Supportive applause from the crowd. Front aerial to split to bhs. Back tuck. Double tuck with a hop back. 9.866.
Zsofia Kovacs (HUN), BB: Switch mount to switch half. Wobble on side aerial. Split leap to front aerial. Bhs, layout. Double turn. Side somie. Double tuck, hop forward. She doesn’t look terribly pleased with that. 13.0.
Kim Bui (GER), BB: Roundoff, layout to two feet mount. Steps back but doesn’t come off. Bhs, layout, balance break where her leg comes up, but stays on. Switch to switch half, another step back. Crowd gasps with the suspense. Nice 540 degree jump. Side aerial. Gainer layout off the end, just under the buzzer, stuck. 11.8.
Hitomi Hatakeda (JPN), BB: Switch mount. Punch front. Front aerial, straddle, wolf jumps. Side somie. Switch. Switch half. Bhs, layout. Double pike, step forward. Sound routine. 12.9.
Lorette Charpy (FRA), BB: Roundoff, layout stepout mount, great. Bhs, layout, perfect. Wolf triple, nice! Charpy is on in this routine so far. Smooth side aerial. Switch, split, Korbut. The eponymous split half. Front aerial, split. And a stuck double pike dismount! Wow. 13.666 feels a little low.
Ana Padurariu (CAN), BB: Back dive mount, Triple wolf turn, excellent. Switch ring, tidy. Side aerial, layout, layout. Switch half. Front aerial, split, bhs. Switch to sheep jump. Double pike dismount with just a step. Excellent routine from the world silver medalist on this event. She sighs with relief as she takes a seat in the kiss and cry. 14.333.
Aliya Musatfina (RUS), BB: Switch half to Onodi and comes off. Bhs, layout. Double turn, small check. Split leap to side aerial, slight check. Front aerial, has to fight to save it. Switch to wolf, balance break. Double tuck, chest low, step forward. Well. 11.6.
Elisabeth Seitz (GER), BB: Punch front. Bhs, layout to two feet, solid. Side somie. Double turn not completed, has to step back and save it. Small wobble on side aerial. Front layout full dismount with a step. 12.466.
Simone Biles (USA), BB: Stands up too quickly midst wold turn full but doesn’t fall. Bhs, layout, layout, excellent. Switch to switch half to back pike, leg comes up but again, no fall. Side aerial. Split jump half. Front aerial, split jump, straddle jump. Bhs, bhs, full in tuck, solid. 14.2.
Kim Bui (GER), UB: Hop change to pike Jaeger to Pak. Maloney to Bhardwaj to toe Shaposh half, toe 1/1 to Hgienger. Full twisting double tuck, small hop back. Control and ease all the way through. 13.8.
Ana Padurariu (CAN), UB: Inbar blind to pike Jaeger. Inbar pike Tkatchev. Bail to stalder full. Ray. Full twisting double tuck with a step forward. 14.066.
Lorette Charpy (FRA), UB: Stalder Shaposh half, toe blind to pike Jaeger. Ricna to Pak. Toe Shaposh half. Toe full to full twisting double tuck, stuck. Bravo! 13.933. Lorette looks delighted, as she should.
Carolyne Pedro (BRA), UB: Shaposh to Pak, legs apart. Toe full. Maloney to bail to Ray. Blind to Jaeger. Toe half. Double tuck. Some form here and there, but she got through. 11.833.
Hitomi Hatakeda (JPN), UB: Inbar to inbar full to toe Shaposh half, inbar blind to pike Jaeger. Ricna. Bail to stalder to Ray. Full twisting double tuck, stuck! Well done. Hatakeda sure loves inbar elements. She was one who had problems in warmups today, but it certainly didn’t show in the competition. 13.566.
Zsofia Kovacs (HUN), UB: Stalder full to Maloney to stalder uprise to Ricna to Pak. Toe Shaposh half. Toe blind to pike Jaeger. Open double tuck dismount. You can tell where her Hungarian teammates are sitting because the rest of the arena is dead silent while she performs except for this little patch of voices screaming encouragement at her. 12.9.
Aliya Mustafina (RUS), UB: Stalder full to Maloney to Pak to toe Shaposh half. Stalder blind to pike Jaeger. Toe full to full twisting double tuck, stuck. My goodness! Sheer excellence. 14.2.
Elisabeth Seitz (GER), UB: Dead silence as she mounts. Maloney to stalder uprise RIcha. Hop to change to pike Jaeger. Stalder pike Tkatchev to Pak. Toe Shaposh half. Toe full to full twisting double tuck with a step back. 14.233.
Simone Biles (USA), UB: Wieler kip, half yurm tp Maloney to uprise Tkatchev. Toe full to pike Tkatchev to Pak. Toe Shaposh half (a bit of a fingertip catch, but she caught it) to immediate full twisting double tuck with a hop. Biles looks relieved, I think. 14.3.
Carolyne Pedro (BRA), VT: FTY, clean, small hop back. 13.733.
Aliya Mustafina (RUS), VT: DTY, amazing. Just a step back. Wow. Mustafina’s ability to do things when she needs to never ceases to boggle the mind. 14.4.
Hitomi Hatakeda (JPN), VT: Yurchenko 1.5, well done, small hop to the side. 13.933.
Elisabeth Seitz (GER), VT: Really nice DTY with a step back. Great lift on that, efficient twist. Camera shows Seitz’s vault in slo-mo, then pans to German head coach Ulla Koch in the background high-fiving someone as Seitz turns to salute the judges. 14.5.
Zsofia Kovacs (HUN), VT: DTY, just excellent in the air, but stumbles back on the landing and has to take two big steps backward to save it. But great in the air! 13.933.
Kim Bui (GER), VT: FTY, clean, hop back. 13.533.
Ana Padurariu (CAN), VT: FTY, small bounce more upwards than back. 13.533.
Simone Biles (USA), VT: Cheng, excellent, small bounce backward. 15.4.
Lorette Charpy (FRA), VT: FTY, hop backwards. 13.566.