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Euros Event Finals: Comebacks, Triumphs

On the last day of the European Championships, the event finals, Beckie Downie got a gold medal for  Great Britain (finally) and Anna Pavlova marked her return to major international competition with shiny new silver medal and Larisa Iordache, Aliya Mustafina and Vanessa Ferrari all added more bling to their medal collections.




It was event finals for both the juniors and seniors. Great Britain followed up three amazing days of competition with gold medals for the juniors and seniors. Russia and Romania took home medals as well.

For the juniors:

Ellie Downie and Amy Tinkler of Great Britain took gold and bronze respectively. Sandwiched in between was Laura Jurca of Romania. The glorious Catherine Lyons won a gold medal for her floor routine. At least one glorious Brit's floor routine got the recognition it deserved from the judges. But that's neither here nor there.

The Seniors:

Vault

Anna Pavlova marked her triumphant return to major international competition by securing a silver medal with a clean DTY and a beautiful yurchenko half on, half of, both stuck landings.

 Giulia Steingruber of Switzerland who successfully defended her vault title. She did her usual hand spring Rudi and a DTY.  The DTY was the cleanest I've seen her do it.

Taking third was Larisa Iordache, taking her first of three event medals. She did a DTY, which I guess was the standard first vault of the championships since everyone and her dog did it as their first vault. And for her second vault, she did a pretty decent Tsukahara full. (C'mon, it's time to learn some new vaults people!)

Just outside of the medals was Alla Sosnitskaya of Russia. Who did a DTY (what else, really?) and a Yurchenko half on half off like Anna Pavolva. While she had nice form in the air and surprising height, she took steps back on her landings which cost her a couple of tenths off her e-score and actually landing toward the side line of the vault.

 She's a funny little thing. The Russians aren't really known for being super vaulters. Little Alla, while she looks like a baby Nastia Liukin, she's more like a McKayla Maroney circa 2011. Very slight, but freakishly powerful.





Uneven Bars

Beckie Downie carried on Great Britain's bad ass bars tradition by winning the gold medal during the uneven bars event final, beating out current European Champion, Aliya Mustafina with a 15.500.

Beckie's routine is bad, ass. She's very much like Beth Tweddle, she's got a lot of ridiculous release skills in combination from high bar to low bar and same bar. She starts with forward pike circles and then goes into a Maloney (toe-on Shaposhnikova) to a Hindorff to a Rinca into a Stalder to piked Tkatchev, which is her own skill.





Taking third was Daria Spiridonova of Russia. She's very Russian in her beautiful lines and beautiful toe point. If there was ever discussion about over-use of a certain type of skill then I think her routine would come up in that discussion. The whole routine is built up of piked skills,  a Komova, a piked Jaeger, pike stalder fulls.



Balance Beam

Maria Kharenkova won the gold medal on the balance beam. It seems that her near miss yesterday boosted her confidence. She was beautiful on the beam. Right off the bat she hit her standing front tuck with ease. Showing of her beautiful flexibility and elegance with a forward aerial to split leap and a beautiful back-handspring to two foot layout. 14.933 (6.4, 8.533).



Larisa Iordache the defending beam champion took the silver. Last year, she did two fulls, this year, she only had one in her routine. She still has plenty of difficulty, including a two foot layout and a triple twist dismount. 14.800 (6.4, 8.400).




Winning bronze was Aliya Mustafina who is the defending beam World Champion. She had all of her standard skills, her switch half to Onodi and her beautiful leaps and double turn. She watered down her routine a bit from yesterday, instead of her two forward aerial walkover, she did one forward aerial to a front hand-spring step out. She still had the highest E score of all the medalists with an 8.733. 14.733 (6.0, 8.733)



Floor

The floor final was packed with talent, really, it could have been anyone's medal. The music choices were definitely interesting.

Larisa Iordache tied with Vanessa Ferrari for the gold medal both with a 14.8 Taking the bronze was Giulia Steingruber. Both Vanessa and Larisa opened with a double double, and then  a full in.  Really, with that much difficulty right off the bat, might as well just give the two of them medals. It's ridiculous.

Young Alla Sosnitskaya had a "Pretty Woman"/Toni Braxton/Grease mash-up for her floor music. While I appreciate her taste in floor music, I really think she should have just stuck with the "Pretty Woman" at least because she worked that theme very well. This is where she reminds me of 2005-2006 Nastia. Her routine is made up of double layouts and twisting elements and she cowboys her tucked elements. She placed 6th with a 14.266 (5.7, 8.566).

Marta Pihan-Kuleza of Poland went with a pink panther theme. Vintage. She opened with a double arabian to front tuck and tied with Diana Bulimar for fourth place with a 14.400. (6.0, 8.400)

Diana had .2 in execution over Marta, but had .2 less in difficulty. While she didn't have as much difficulty as a lot of her competitors, she still had some unique skills, including a chest roll she does following a random side somi. Her tumbling was super clean and beautiful. 14.400 (5.8, 8.600).

The event final judges apparently did not appreciate Claudia Fragapane's floor routine as much as I do. It's great to see someone go just as hard on their dance as they do on their tumbling, and that is Claudia for sure.


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