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Gymnast Profiles: Vanessa Ferrari

Alright kids, I'm back. My spidey sense is a little off this week due to the news of George Lucas selling his soul to the mouse. But this is not a blog about George Lucas putting the final nail in the coffin of the Star Wars as we know it. This is a blog about GYMNASTICS and dammit all, we're talking about gymnastics!

This week's gymnast profile is a tiny little Italian who shares a last name with a luxury car also has an element named for her in the Code of Points and was Italy's first Women's Artistic Gymnastics world champion at 15.

If you guessed Vanessa Ferrari, you're awesome and win a prize. A lot of the gymnasts I've profiled are from big gymnastics countries

Vanessa Ferrari
Vital Statistics:
Age: 21, soon to be 22
Birthday: November 10, 1990
Height: 4 feet 9 inches, 143 cm
Birthplace: Orzinouvi, Brescia, Italy
Hometown: Genivolta, Cremona, Italy
Club: Brixia Brescio & Centro Sportivo Esercito
Coach: Enrico Casella
Known For: Floor Excercise
Nickname:Tiny Dynamo, Cannibal

 Italy is not one of the big gymnastics countries, but they managed to produce the little gymnastics nugget Vanessa was a world champion before her 16th birthday. How's that for a sweet sixteen present, a gold medal?

Tiny supernova Vanessa burst on to the international gymnastics scene as a junior at the age of 13 at the 2004 Junior European Championships. There, she scored an all-around silver. She also won a bronze medal on the balance beam.

Vanessa made her senior debut at the European Championships in Volos. There, she helped the Italian team win a gold medal, just squeezing out the Romanian team by one tenth of a point. Vanessa's all-around score was higher than any other female gymnast competing at that competition (there was no individual all-around competition that year). Vanessa contributed a silver medal for the floor exercise to her collection as well.

In October 2006, Vanessa competed in the World Championships in Aarhus, Denmark. American gymnast and reigning World Champion, Chellsie Memmel pulled out of the individual all-around due to a shoulder injury. The competition was anybody's game. On her last rotation, the floor-exercise, Vanessa's best event. She gave it all she had and she became the first Italian woman to win an all-around championship medal at a World Championship competition. She had the highest score on the uneven bars and the floor exercise with a 15.825 and a 15.500 respectively. The Aarhus World Championships was also the first time the new Code of Points was in place at a World Championships.

The next year, at the European Championships, Vanessa picked up an all-around gold medal and a floor exercise gold.

In Beijing, Vanessa and team Italy qualified in 10th place, missing the team final. Vanessa qualified for the all-around final in 21st and finished in 7th place.

After the olympics in 2009, she competed in the European Championships in Milan and added another floor medal to her collection after winning the silver medal with a score of 14.675.

In January of 2012, the Italian team competed in the London test event in the same arena the Olympic gymnastics championships would be held in August. Vanessa and team Italy scored a first place win and individually she placed first on the floor.

At the London Olympics, Vanessa qualified for the individual all-around final but did not medal. Additionally, she qualified for the floor exercise final. During the final, Vanessa tied with everyone's favorite dark-haired Russian beauty, Aliya Mustafina. Due to (in my opinion) crappy tie-breaking procedures, Aliya was awarded with the bronze medal. Again, boo on you FIG. But enough of that.  Vanessa did leave London with a skill named for her on the floor exercise in the code of points.

Per the Code:
 The Ferrari- Split leap to 1/1 turn to ring. Rated 'D'.

Vanessa is scheduled to compete at the Stuttgart World Cup in November and the Glasgow World Cup in December.

Here is Vanessa on the Floor Exercise in London and her all-around performances in Aarhus, 2006.

Medal Record:
Gold 2006 Aarhus All-Around
Bronze 2007 Aarhus Uneven Bars
Bronze 2008 Aarhus Floor Exercise
Bronze 2009 Aarhus All-Around
European Championships
Gold 2006 Volos Team
Gold 2007 Amsterdam All-Around
Gold 2007 Amsterdam Floor Exercise
Silver 2006 Volos Floor Exercise
Silver 2009 Milan Floor Exercise
Bronze 2012 Brussels Team

If you want to see your favorite gymnast profiled, head to the contact me section and drop me a line.
That's all for now, till next time, kids! 

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