2011 World Championships News

Written by John Crumlish    Wednesday, 19 October 2011 14:22    PDF Print
Italy's Ferrari Fueled for Future Challenges
(12 votes, average 5.00 out of 5)

Despite the ankle sprain that forced her out of the floor exercise final at the recent worlds in Tokyo, 2006 world all-around champion Vanessa Ferrari (Italy) told IG she remains confident in her continued comeback. Pictured: Ferrari and Italian team physiotherapist Salvatore Scintu following her ankle sprain Oct. 16

Despite an injury that forced her to withdraw from the floor exercise final at the recent world gymnastics championships in Tokyo, 2006 world all-around champion Vanessa Ferrari (Italy) told IG she remains confident in her continued comeback from injuries and a growth spurt.

"After surgery on my right ankle (in June 2009) I had a long period of recovery," said Ferrari, who placed 12th all-around in Tokyo. "I changed my body from adolescent to woman, and it was not so easy."

In addition to Ferrari's respectable all-around showing in Tokyo, she qualified for the apparatus final on floor exercise that took place Oct. 16. Ferrari has qualified for the floor final in each of the four world championships in which she has competed.

Enrico Casella, Ferrari's coach, said she slightly injured her left ankle in warm-ups 40 minutes before the Tokyo final began and thereby withdrew.

"Vanessa was performing a simple forward tuck salto on the floor and rebounded to prepare for the combination line when she sprained her left ankle," Casella told IG. "Not a serious injury but enough to stop her and withdrew from the final. All of us are very sorry because, the day before in training, she performed an update of her floor exercise to a 6.2 Start Value, and she received congratulations from (Romanian coach) Octavian Bellu who saw her. I think that, with this new exercise, she can compete for medals."

Casella said he is impressed by Ferrari's commitment to restoring her gymnastics to the level that won her the 2006 world all-around gold medal and a share of the 2007 world all-around bronze medal. He said Ferrari began training again "in a complete manner" after the European championships in Berlin in April, where she finished sixth all-around.

"We had the time to prepare for Tokyo with accuracy," said Casella, who trains Ferrari at Brixia Gymnastics Club near Milan. "We were sure about her performance and we are disappointed only about her (missed) vault in the all-around competition, because she lost the seventh position that was in our expectations. For me it's a real pleasure to work with a gymnast of 21 years with so much enthusiasm and application. This time Vanessa was very unlucky but I think she now is in credit with fate."

Ferrari said she is looking forward to a peak performance at next summer's Olympic Games in London.

"Now with the help of Enrico I find it easier to train, and was great to retry all the skills I made before," she told IG. "For me, now it will be interesting to try something new."

Read complete coverage of the 2011 world championships in the December 2011 issue of International Gymnast magazine. Click here to subscribe at a special discounted rate!

Vanessa Ferrari is featured in the following issues of IG Magazine:
"Refueling Ferrari" - Ferrari/Casella interview (January/February 2009)
2007 World Championships special issue (October 2007)
Ferrari on cover, 2007 European Championships coverage, "10 Questions with Enrico Casella" (June 2007)
2006 World Championships special issue (December 2006)
Ferrari on cover photo collage (November 2006)
Ferrari on cover, 2006 Worlds preview (September 2006)
Italian team on cover, 2006 Europeans coverage (June 2006)
"Driving Force" - Ferrari profile (December 2005)

Written by Amanda Turner    Sunday, 16 October 2011 04:06    PDF Print
World Championships Conclude in Tokyo
(11 votes, average 4.27 out of 5)

The Chinese finished on top again as the 2011 World Gymnastics Championships ended Sunday in Tokyo.

Sui Lu won balance beam and Zou Kai won high bar to put China on top of the total medal standings, with four golds, five silvers and three bronzes.

Sui was brilliant on beam, scoring an event-high 15.866, for her first world title.

American Danell Leyva won parallel bars, helping the U.S. finish second with four golds and three bronzes.

2008 Olympian Ksenia Afanasyeva, a substitute for Russian teammate Viktoria Komova, won the gold medal on women's floor exercise as the final performer. Russia was third in the medal standings with two golds and four silvers.

Korea's Yang Hak Seon outvaulted the field, landing his spectacular handspring, triple-twisting layout front for first place. Defending champion Thomas Bouhail (France) nailed his first vault but stumbled backward on his second for fourth.

The next world championships take place in 2013 in Antwerp, Belgium.

Read complete coverage of the 2011 World Gymnastics Championships in the December 2011 issue of International Gymnast Magazine. Subscribe today at a special discount!

2011 World Gymnastics Championships
Oct. 16, Tokyo, Japan

Balance Beam FinalDENDScore
1.Sui Lu6.69.26615.866
2.Yao Jinnan6.38.93315.233
3.Jordyn Wieber6.28.93315.133
4.Alexandra Raisman6.48.66615.066
5.Amelia Racea5.98.63314.533
6.Yulia Inshina5.78.82514.525
7.Catalina Ponor5.78.54114.241
8.Viktoria Komova5.97.86613.766

Women's Floor Exercise FinalDENDScore
1.Ksenia Afanaseva6.19.03315.133
2.Sui Lu6.18.96615.066
3.Alexandra Raisman6.18.90015.000
4.Yao Jinnan6.08.86614.866
5.Lauren Mitchell6.38.43314.733
6.Jordyn Wieber6.08.70014.700
7.Beth Tweddle6.18.5000.114.500
8.Diana Chelaru5.88.40014.200

Men's Vault FinalDENDScoreAverage
1.Yang Hak Seon7.49.46616.86616.566
2.Anton Golotsutskov7.09.33316.33316.366
3.Makoto Okiguchi7.09.4000.116.30016.291
4.Thomas Bouhail7.09.66616.66616.187
5.Denis Ablyazin7.09.33316.33316.174
6.Dmitry Kasperovich7.09.53316.53316.083
7.Shek Wai Hung6.69.00015.60015.950
8.Jeffrey Wammes6.88.63315.43315.683

Parallel Bars FinalDENDScore
1.Danell Leyva6.49.23315.633
2.Vasileios Tsolakidis6.59.03315.533
2.Zhang Chenglong6.59.03315.533
4.Kohei Uchimura6.59.00015.500
5.Yann Cucherat6.48.93315.333
6.Marius Berbecar6.68.66615.266
7.Feng Zhe6.68.60015.200
8.Kazuhito Tanaka6.88.36615.166

High Bar FinalDENDScore
1.Zou Kai7.78.74116.441
2.Zhang Chenglong7.68.76616.366
3.Kohei Uchimura7.39.03316.333
4.Fabian Hambuechen7.58.73316.233
5.Epke Zonderland7.47.43314.833
6.Yusuke Tanaka7.07.70014.700
7.Philipp Boy7.07.30014.300
8.John Orozco5.98.23314.133
Written by Amanda Turner    Saturday, 15 October 2011 01:38    PDF Print
Uchimura, Komova Golden in Tokyo Event Finals
(15 votes, average 4.53 out of 5)

Japanese superstar Kohei Uchimura won another gold medal Saturday at the world gymnastics championships in Tokyo, where several gymnasts clinched berths to the 2012 Olympic Games.

Uchimura, who won his third consecutive world all-around title on Friday evening, won the gold medal on floor exercise. He opened with a triple-twisting double tuck, which the judges originally mistook for a double-double, awarding him a lower Difficulty score. A successful inquiry pushed Uchimura to first for his first world apparatus title.

Uchimura, who qualified to five of six individual apparatus finals in Tokyo, showed he was human with errors on the other two events Saturday. He fell off pommel horse while attempting to upgrade his routine, showing two new skills. He also appeared tired on still rings, finishing sixth.

Hungary's Krisztian Berki (pommel horse) and China's Chen Yibing (still rings) successfully defended their world titles from 2010.

American McKayla Maroney won the gold medal on women's vault with near perfect execution. And after a controversial silver medal in the all-around, Russian star Viktoria Komova was untouchable for the title on uneven bars.

Five-time Olympian Oksana Chusovitina, 36, won the silver on vault, her 11th world medal. Chusovitina now has won world medals in three different decades for three different nations, including vault silvers every 10 years: 1991 for the Soviet Union, 2001 for Uzbekistan and 2011 for Germany.

The apparatus medals also came with tickets to the 2012 Olympics for gymnasts from countries that did not advance to the Olympics or the pre-Olympic qualification, provided the gymnasts met the criteria. On men's floor exercise, Israel's Alexander Shatilov tied Brazil's Diego Hypolito for the bronze, qualifying him to the Olympics.

On women's vault, Phan Thi Ha Than burst into tears upon securing the bronze, which is not only her ticket to the Olympic Games but also the first world championship medal for a Vietnamese gymnast.

Competition concludes Sunday afternoon with the second day of apparatus finals.

Read complete coverage of the 2011 World Gymnastics Championships in the December 2011 issue of International Gymnast Magazine. Subscribe today at a special discount!

Follow IG Publisher Paul Ziert's live commentary from Yoyogi Stadium, broadcast simultaneously on IG's official Facebook Page and Twitter account.

2011 World Gymnastics Championships
Oct. 15, Tokyo, Japan

Women's Vault FinalDENDScoreAverage
1.McKayla Maroney6.59.30015.80015.300
2.Oksana Chusovitina6.38.76615.06614.733
3.Phan Thi Ha Than5.98.70014.60014.666
4.Jade Barbosa5.89.06614.86614.566
5.Giulia Steingruber6.38.60014.90014.450
6.Tatiana Nabiyeva5.88.76614.56614.349
7.Alexa Moreno6.38.43314.73314.216
8.Yamilet Peña5.38.60013.9006.950

Uneven Bars FinalDENDScore
1.Viktoria Komova6.78.80015.500
2.Tatiana Nabiyeva6.68.40015.000
3.Huang Qiushuang6.78.13314.833
4.Jordyn Wieber6.38.20014.500
5.Gabrielle Douglas6.37.90014.200
5.Asuka Teramoto6.37.90014.200
7.Koko Tsurumi6.47.66614.066
8.Youna Dufournet6.36.34112.641

Men's Floor Exercise FinalDENDScore
1.Kohei Uchimura6.78.93315.633
2.Zou Kai6.98.60015.500
3.Diego Hypolito6.88.66615.466
3.Alexander Shatilov6.78.76615.466
5.Steven Legendre6.88.60015.400
6.Flavius Koczi6.78.63315.333
6.Tomas Gonzalez6.58.83315.333
8.Jake Dalton6.68.6330.115.133

Pommel Horse FinalDENDScore
1.Krisztian Berki6.79.13315.833
2.Cyril Tommasone6.58.76615.266
3.Louis Smith7.08.06615.066
4.Vid Hidvegi6.48.60015.000
5.Kohei Uchimura6.77.83314.533
6.Prashanth Sellathurai6.67.73314.333
7.Saso Bertoncelj6.57.76614.266
7.Teng Haibin6.67.66614.266

Still Rings FinalDENDScore
1.Chen Yibing6.89.00015.800
2.Arthur Zanetti6.59.10015.600
3.Koji Yamamuro6.78.80015.500
4.Matteo Morandi6.88.40015.200
5.Yuri van Gelder6.87.86614.666
6.Kohei Uchimura6.48.23314.633
7.Jonathan Horton6.18.20014.300
8.Regulo Carmona6.77.56614.266
Written by Dwight Normile    Friday, 14 October 2011 14:38    PDF Print
From the IG Vault: The Kohei Uchimura Story
(10 votes, average 4.90 out of 5)

As the first male gymnast to win three world all-around titles, Kohei Uchimura has elevated his status in the history of gymnastics. But can he be proclaimed the best ever? Considering he's only 22 and winning by large margins, that question will likely be answered in time. But past legends never had the opportunity to compete in three world championships in consecutive years. Prior to the 1990s, world championships were held only once per quadrennium — on the even year — and then every other odd year.

History aside, Uchimura is definitely peerless right now, and he's winning under the most physically demanding set of rules the sport has ever known. Following is a profile on Uchimura (from the April 2010 issue of International Gymnast), in which he explains his unique introduction to the sport, what he thinks is missing from the Code of Points, and his ultimate goal for any competition.


Though he easily won the world all-around gold last October in London, Kohei Uchimura may be the only one who is not convinced there will be more such titles in his future. And that is not to say he lacks confidence, but more that he believes the past is history. Asked if he can sweep the major all-around titles through the 2012 Olympics, the nimble Nagasaki native answers as if he’d never won anything. “I don’t think I can,” he told IG. “I have completely forgotten that I was champion.”

It may have been a bold question, but would anyone really be shocked if Uchimura dominates this entire quadrennium? In London he competed at his own level. And even with a mistake on parallel bars, where he took an intermediate swing, he still scored 2.575 clear of runner-up Daniel Keatings of Great Britain. By contrast, Bridget Sloan won the women’s all-around by .05.

Uchimura was visibly thrilled to win his first world title, but that glitch on p-bars represented a loss against himself. When asked how he rated his London performance on a scale from 1-100, Uchimura answered emphatically, “50!”

Perhaps Uchimura’s strict standards were galvanized by the Japanese legends that preceded him. As a young teenager, he looked up to Naoya Tsukahara, son of Japanese icon Mitsuo Tsukahara. “He is my gymnastics role model,” Uchimura says. “When I was 15, I decided to move to his gym in Tokyo from my parents’ gym in Nagasaki.”

That meant leaving his former-gymnast father, Kazuhisa, and mother, Shuko, for more intense training at Nippon Sport Science University, where he is now coached by two-time Olympian Yoshiaki Hatakeda (1992, ’96).

It wasn’t an easy transition. After competing in a national competition during his final year of junior high school, Uchimura was impressed by his stronger competitors. “I wanted to be like them, to be a better gymnast, and made the decision to go to Tokyo,” says Uchimura, whose younger sister, Haruhi, also is a gymnast.

Mother and father were not so sure it was the right move. “At first they were against me, but I was a child that never listens to somebody once I made up my mind firmly,” Uchimura says. “So in the end, they said OK, reluctantly.”

Uchimura says he appreciates the respect his parents showed him by letting him move. He also remembers how fortunate he was to grow up with a gym as his playground. “Since it started as playing, the feeling that gymnastics is interesting and fun has rooted in me,” he says. “That’s why I still think I want to always enjoy doing gymnastics.”

Credit Dad for not pushing his talented son in the family business. “He wasn’t like that,” Uchimura says. “No hard words or anything. He just told me to enjoy the sport, and that if I can’t enjoy it, it means nothing. I think this was very good for me.”

And today, Uchimura is good—no, great—for a sport which at times can be confused with a circus. For example, the 5-foot-3, 116-pound phenom placed only sixth on high bar at the London worlds, but he showed the cleanest performance, technically and aesthetically, of the final.

Uchimura is diplomatic, to a certain point, when asked if the men’s Code is missing the boat right now in terms of rewarding the best gymnastics. “I don’t think the Code is wrong, but I would have liked to have had a higher score [on high bar] at the time,” he told IG.

So how would Uchimura change the Code, if he could? “I’d like to bring back the bonus for virtuosity,” he says. “I would like to see excellent scores for excellent performances that nobody can equal.”

No other gymnast could match Uchimura’s overall virtuosity in London, even if the judges possessed no tool to reward it. The Code currently requires judges to use only their eyes and a calculator, while the brain and soul are apparently too emotional to trust.

For the sake of artistic gymnastics, Uchimura is clinging to his principles. “I think beautiful performances can make people—people who don’t even know gymnastics very well—be moved and say ‘Wow,’” he says. “I think the performance that touches people’s hearts is beautiful. So I want to show such a performance.”

Though Uchimura is planning to upgrade his difficulty on floor exercise, pommel horse and rings this year, he’s not revealing any changes just yet. But thanks to YouTube, viewers can already see that he has an excellent layout triple-double off high bar and a tucked triple-double on floor exercise.

Still, he strongly believes execution is what fans appreciate most. “Even simple skills,” he says. “If you do them with perfectly straight knees and toes … I think the audience can understand the difference.”

Uchimura says his favorite event is pommel horse, “because it is not hard for my body [and] I can train for a long time!” Vault, on the other hand, doesn’t thrill him much. “The performance is too short,” he contends. “I cannot show any difference in performance as compared to other gymnasts.”

Aside from his unwavering commitment to impeccable form, even during the most dizzying of aerial elements, Uchimura also stands out for his cat-like landings. Whether it’s a triple twist floor dismount or a double pike off p-bars, he seems to stick better than two-sided tape.

Perhaps the ill-timed ankle injury to Germany’s Fabian Hambüchen, who got hurt on the eve of the London worlds, contributed to Uchimura’s current god-like status. “It didn’t affect me,” Uchimura said of Hambüchen’s absence from the meet. “But I was disappointed, because he is a good gymnast and my friend.”

Hambüchen, who referred to Uchimura as “the man” prior to the worlds, is still in awe of his talent. “He is really strong, and I think he could be the next Yang Wei,” he told IG. “But I won’t give up. Never.”

In terms of results, Uchimura could indeed be the next Yang Wei, who won back-to-back world all-around titles prior to his 2008 Olympic crown. But the comparison ends the moment the two mount the apparatus. Uchimura is smooth where Yang was sloppy, effortless where Yang was labored.

Ironically, as accomplished as Uchimura is with chalk on his hands, he seems less motivated outside the gym. He says he spends his spare time “sleeping, shopping … it depends.” And what about his personality? “I like doing things at my own pace,” he says. Says Hambüchen: “We know each other pretty well now from several competitions. He is a really nice guy and pretty funny. He likes to laugh, like nearly every Japanese gymnast.”

What makes Uchimura’s world title even more daunting to competitors is that he’s still so young. He turned 21 on Jan. 3, and is still improving. “I did nothing special [to celebrate],” he said of his birthday. “But in the morning I performed on radio programs of the new year.”

During one of those programs, Uchimura was quizzed about the origin of his name, Kohei. “What I was told is Hei is from TaiHeiYou (Pacific Ocean), and Kou means crossing, so [my parents] wanted me to be a great child that can cross the Pacific Ocean,” he says. “I’m a bit afraid that I haven’t lived up to my name. However, I got really great results last year, so I think I could do something similar to that.”

Right now, Uchimura has replaced 2005 world champion Hiroyuki Tomita as the new leader of the Japanese team. He is building his own legacy at Nippon Sport Science University, where he is starting his final year in physical education. “I must bring the team together while doing my own training,” he says. “Many great gymnasts came from here: Takemoto, Aihara, Yamashita, Tsurumi, Kenmotsu, Tsukahara, Okamura, Fujimoto, Gushiken, Morisue, Mizutori.”

With the Olympics only two years away, Uchimura is fully aware of the challenge ahead. Tomita led Japan to gold at Athens 2004, but China claimed the 2008 crown at home in Beijing, where Uchimura actually surpassed Tomita in actual scoring.

Even with two falls from pommel horse in the 2008 all-around final, Uchimura grabbed the silver behind Yang. At London 2012, his main focus will not be on the all-around at all. “The team gold is more important,” he says. “The team gold is everything at the Olympics.”

But Uchimura is careful not to look too far ahead, just as he refuses to believe his success in 2009 has any bearing on the present. In his mind, he always starts from scratch. “I can’t win the [2010] worlds if I do not qualify [for the team],” he says philosophically. “So, I think that it leads me to victory at worlds to do my best at qualification competitions.”

Such humble thoughts should serve Uchimura well. It’s evident he doesn’t do gymnastics just for the medals. The sport has been his life since age 3. It’s more martial art than competition.

Still, the idea of Uchimura going undefeated through the 2012 London Olympics is not far-fetched. He will be hard to catch at the Rotterdam worlds in October, and the 2011 Tokyo worlds will be on home soil. Uchimura certainly knows this but is disciplined enough not to internalize it. He performs for a different set of eyes, anyway.

“I want to enjoy each competition and show people beautiful gymnastics,” he says. Should he achieve those basic goals, chances are he will win over the judges, too.

Written by Amanda Turner    Friday, 14 October 2011 10:25    PDF Print
Uchimura Takes Third World All-Around Title
(9 votes, average 4.78 out of 5)
Japanese superstar Kohei Uchimura made history Friday at the world gymnastics championships in Tokyo, becoming the first male gymnast to win three world all-around titles.

Uchimura, the two-time defending champion, had a perfect outing en route to victory. He nailed six routines, ending with a stuck dismount off high bar that had the Tokyo crowd on its feet. He scored 93.631, more than 3 points ahead of his closest rival, meaning he conceivably could have fallen twice and still won.

Uchimura joins Russian Svetlana Khorkina (1997, 2001, 2003) as the only gymnasts to win three world all-around titles. Uchimura is the only gymnast to accomplish the feat in consecutive years.

After a subpar performance in earlier rounds, German Philipp Boy hit Friday to defend his silver medal from the 2010 Worlds. Boy scored 90.530, an improvement of nearly 2 points from qualification. Koji Yamamuro won the bronze with 90.255, bringing Japan a second medal.

Great Britain's Daniel Purvis was fourth ahead of American John Orozco, who had been second in qualification.

U.S. champion Danell Leyva, third in qualification, finished last after a frightening fall on high bar, clipping his chin on the high bar on his full-twisting layout Tkatchev. He did not finish the routine but was not seriously injured.

Following the competition, Uchimura and Romanian Ana Porgras were awarded the Longines Prize of Elegance.

Competition continues Saturday afternoon with the first day of apparatus finals.

Read complete coverage of the 2011 World Gymnastics Championships in the December 2011 issue of International Gymnast Magazine. Subscribe today at a special discount!

Follow IG Publisher Paul Ziert's live commentary from Yoyogi Stadium, broadcast simultaneously on IG's official Facebook Page and Twitter account.

2011 World Gymnastics Championships
Oct. 14, Tokyo, Japan

Men's All-Around FinalFXPHSRVTPBHBTotal
1.Kohei Uchimura15.56615.40015.16616.23315.56615.70093.631
2.Philipp Boy14.86614.46614.50016.06614.56616.06690.530
3.Koji Yamamuro14.56614.66615.12516.06614.96614.86690.255
4.Daniel Purvis15.03314.56614.33316.00015.20014.80089.932
5.John Orozco14.40014.36614.30015.86615.36615.36689.664
6.David Belyavsky14.73314.73314.37516.23314.60014.60089.274
7.Nikolai Kuksenkov14.36615.00014.50016.03314.03315.20089.132
8.Marcel Nguyen15.23313.86614.93315.13315.20014.46688.831
9.Cyril Tommasone14.33315.40013.96615.60014.60014.66688.565
10.Rafael Martinez14.63313.83313.89116.10014.46615.16688.089
10.Kim Seungil14.46614.46614.29115.60014.43314.83388.089
12.Flavius Koczi15.36614.33313.63316.43314.43313.80087.998
13.Alexander Shatilov15.30014.30013.90015.40014.20014.33387.433
14.Anton Fokin14.06614.56614.23315.70014.96613.83387.364
15.Emin Garibov14.43313.56614.40815.50013.96615.45887.331
16.Andrei Likhovitsky14.26614.96613.70015.30014.60014.33387.165
17.Kim Soomyun14.46614.86613.86616.36614.10013.50087.164
18.Teng Haibin14.26615.06613.60015.63315.23313.23387.031
19.Oleg Stepko14.63314.03314.03315.76614.23313.56686.264
20.Pascal Bucher13.80013.06613.56615.33314.93314.33385.031
21.Javier Gomez14.06613.50014.30014.80014.47513.76684.907
22.Tomas Gonzalez15.33312.10013.86616.00013.30013.76684.365
23.Nathan Gafuik13.63312.90013.56615.83312.53314.23382.698
24.Danell Leyva14.83314.43314.34114.80015.3336.46680.206
  • «
  •  Start 
  •  Prev 
  •  1 
  •  2 
  •  3 
  •  4 
  •  5 
  •  6 
  •  7 
  •  8 
  •  9 
  •  10 
  •  Next 
  •  End 
  • »

Page 1 of 12

Your are currently browsing this site with Internet Explorer 6 (IE6).

Your current web browser must be updated to version 7 of Internet Explorer (IE7) to take advantage of all of template's capabilities.

Why should I upgrade to Internet Explorer 7? Microsoft has redesigned Internet Explorer from the ground up, with better security, new capabilities, and a whole new interface. Many changes resulted from the feedback of millions of users who tested prerelease versions of the new browser. The most compelling reason to upgrade is the improved security. The Internet of today is not the Internet of five years ago. There are dangers that simply didn't exist back in 2001, when Internet Explorer 6 was released to the world. Internet Explorer 7 makes surfing the web fundamentally safer by offering greater protection against viruses, spyware, and other online risks.

Get free downloads for Internet Explorer 7, including recommended updates as they become available. To download Internet Explorer 7 in the language of your choice, please visit the Internet Explorer 7 worldwide page.