Maia World Cup to warm up Acrobatic gymnasts for 2016 Worlds03/03/2016
Held for the fifth consecutive year in the city of Maia on Portugal's Northern coast, this weekend's 2016 Maia Acro World Cup offers an excellent opportunity for top Acrobatic gymnasts to compete on the international stage just a month before the World Championships in Putian (CHN).
Following the kickoff event in Puurs (BEL) in mid-February, Maia is the second of three stops in the 2016 FIG Acrobatic Gymnastics World Cup series, with gymnasts from nine countries registered to compete in four of the five categories – Women's Groups, Men's, Women's and Mixed Pairs. The Portuguese Gymnastics Federation is known for organising numerous international competitions each year and 2016 is no exception, with World Cups in each of the FIG's competitive disciplines – Artistic, Rhythmic, Trampoline, Aerobic and Acrobatic Gymnastics – being held in Portugal.
The 2016 Maia Acro World Cup will see proven champions as well as young hopefuls at the Maia Gymnastics Sports Complex, which has hosted all previous editions of the event. Standing out on the roster are reigning European champions in the Men's Pair category, Vincent Casse and Arne van Gelder of Belgium who also took the title in Puurs, their compatriots and silver medallists in the Women's Pair in Puurs, Laurie Philpott and Natascha van Es, and the Russian Mixed Pair Maksim Soprunov and Ekaterina Vdovina, who won the Mixed Pairs title in Belgium and defends their title in Maia. The host country will be counting on João Martins and Madalena Carlos in the Mixed Pairs and their Women's Group, comprising Susana Pinto, Joana Patrocínio and Jéssica Leite, to defend Portugal's honours.
Qualifications will take place on Friday and Saturday and finals are scheduled for Sunday. More information on the competition as well as a live stream are available on the event website at http://www.acroteam.org/miac16 and fans can also receive updates via the Facebook page of the Portuguese Gymnastics Federation.