Baku 2015 Finals Report.

AA Final

Kelly Simm triumphed in the battle of the British girls to make the AA final in this one per country format. It would be lovely to give an in depth report on Kelly’s routines, but unfortunately none were shown in the broadcast*

. *Kelly’s bars have just popped up on You Tube

What we do know is that Kelly started on beam, and wasn’t able to produce her best on the day, counting two falls, but also taking a 0.8 hit to the D score from what was awarded to her in qualification. 5.2 – 4.4 suggest something like she missed completely on her acro series which would have affected her CR as well as counting skills. It’s impossible to know for sure without actually seeing the routine though. 10.233 was a harsh start, Kelly has worked from a 5.8 D this year, which gives an idea of her potential here, so a beam to forget and move on from. Next to floor where Kelly was a little down on qualifying scoring 13.3 today, but never the less safely through.

The second half of the competition was far more successful, Kelly competed her new laid out Podkopayeva, scoring 14.133, third highest score of the day behind the reigning European vault silver medalist Giulia Steingruber, and gymnastics superstar Aliya Mustafina. Finishing on bars, Kelly performed her new routine including the in bar Stalder to piked Tkatchev, the skill  which she is presently the only gymnast to have competed. A great routine scoring a career high of 14.266, and second only to reigning Olympic champion Mustafina today.

Kelly’s excellent routine from AA finals, including a great angle on her new skill.

Full results of the AA final can be found here:  http://www.baku2015.com/gymnastics-artistic/event/women-qualification/phase=gaw499900/index.html

Vault Final

Kelly was in action again in the Vault final, up second of the six finalists, she started well competing the laid out Podkopayeva and achieving I believe the highest score she has ever got for this vault.  Legs together during the turn, and when hitting the vault which is often sadly a rare sight, Kelly holds the shape well through the lift and half turn off, just piking down coming in to land which is what is keeping the E score from being really high for the moment. Just slightly off center with a small pace to control the landing, 14.333 was a great start.

Kelly used to compete the DTY as her first vault, and a tucked version of her new vault for a 5.8 and 5.0 D score, when this year she debuted the laid out Podkopayeva which is a 5.6, and competed the FTY for a 5.0, she took a drop in D score, but it was always looking like the plan was to work toward using the DTY for the second vault and a 5.6 and 5.8 D raising her 0.6 in total. Until vault finals, we hadn’t seen the DTY this year, and initially I didn’t think we would today, as when Kelly sets off to vault you can clearly see the board says 4.32, and underneath 5.0 signalling that the intended vault was the full twisting Yurchenko. It was likely just an admin error, as Kelly went for the double twist. Sadly she just didn’t make the contact she needed with the vault, one and possibly both hands slipping across the top meaning it was impossible to get the lift she needed. She got the double twist round, but had no chance of getting her feet to the floor first, and had to take a 0.00 score. Kelly is more than capable of doing this vault, and I’m sure we’ll see her competing both successfully soon. I would say it was definitely worth trying full difficulty, as looking at the scores from today, Kelly would have been returning home with a bronze medal should she had got both to her feet.

Full vault results are available here:  http://www.baku2015.com/gymnastics-artistic/event/women-vault/phase=gaw002100/index.html?v=20150620125238&intcmp=sr-bysport-byday-schline-result

Beam Final

Beam saw Commonwealth bronze medalist Georgie Hockenhull take her place in the final alongside amongst others, rising Russian star Seda Tutkhalyan who had to beat both Aliya Mustafina and Viktoria Komova to make it into this final, as well as Romania’s Andrea Iridion,  who beat both Teal Grindle and Catherine Lyons in the 2014 junior European beam final. Dutch gymnast Lieke Wevers has also been working beautifully on beam recently,  tough competition indeed.

Starting with her new and highly difficult combination free cartwheel to layout, Georgie missed her feet completely and came to grief very early on in the exercise. She did well to grab the beam on the way down to slow her momentum, this is something that will have happened many times in training this skill, but it was a nasty version of this type of fall, and she took a battering on the way down. Tough to start your final with such a fall, it is a very difficult combination, from a flick you can if offline have some chance of pulling it back in from the hand contact, in order to start the layout inline. with the free cartwheel there isn’t a lot you can do, if the landing is off, then the layout will be off.

Georgie gathered herself so well, jumping straight back up and completing her routine with confidence and determination, a great example of how to deal with such a fall, and very impressive on such a big stage.  Getting the most out of your exercise no matter what happens is exactly how competitions should be approached, there is a whole routine to be done, and it is made up of many parts. Georgie missed her connection from the free walkover-change leap into the change 1/4, so wisely added a sissone-W jump to ensure composition requirement was awarded. She had a bit of a wobble on her lovely side somi, but the rest of the routine was performed really well.

The score of 11.833 on first look might seem very harsh for what was essentially a lovely routine with one fall, but it was the technicalities of judging that took her D score from  5.7 to a 4.3 which resulted in such a low overall mark. Georgie did lose her connection bonus today, but the big drop in score was all on that first combination. Missing her feet meant that the layout wasn’t counted, meaning she had to count a B instead of a C in her acro total, it also meant she received no credit for her series taking 0.5 from her CR, and also no backward acro taking a further 0.5 from her CR.

Full beam, final results are available here: http://www.baku2015.com/gymnastics-artistic/event/women-beam/phase=gaw008100/index.html?v=20150620143052&intcmp=sr-bysport-byday-schline-result

So that concludes the first European games, a mixed competition for all the girls, much to be proud of, and much to learn from to keep moving forward and improving. Kelly will be in action again in Gwangju Korea at the 2015 Summer Universiade in just two weeks time, good luck Kelly!