Tabea Alt, Oleg Verniaiev star at Stuttgart's DTB-Pokal World Cup weekend20/03/2017
With her first World Cup title, German Olympian Tabea Alt gave herself a memorable 17th birthday present Saturday, while Olympic Parallel Bars champion Oleg Verniaiev claimed his first All-around crown of the season at the EnBW DTB-Pokal in Stuttgart, the second of three FIG All-around World Cup events this year.
Birthday magic for Alt
Excellence on Balance Beam and Floor Exercise, where she earned the highest scores of the competition, helped Tabea Alt compensated for an early fall on her Uneven Bars dismount. As she stuck her final pass on Floor, a huge smile spread across her face. “I did not expect this,” said Alt. “It's really a dream that it was enough for the very top. It was very important that I could put the Uneven Bars behind me and concentrate on my Beam performance. I hope it will continue like this.” Alt is next scheduled to compete at the All-around World Cup finale April 8 in London.
Beam woes hurt Melnikova, Hurd
Alt’s early mistakes on bars left the door open for Olympic team silver medallist Angelina Melnikova of Russia and newcomer Morgan Hurd of the United States. In the lead with two events to go, Melnikova came off the beam on her tumbling series (two back handsprings to layout to two feet) in an otherwise steady routine. Hurd fell twice (standing full and layout stepout) before nailing a very difficult tucked full-in dismount. Both rebounded with difficult and artistic presentations on Floor Exercise to claim silver and bronze, respectively.
Vernieiev’s view from the top
Second at the AT&T American Cup two weeks ago, Oleg Verniaiev set his sights firmly set on the top step of the podium in Stuttgart. The Olympic All-around silver medallist’s day was bookended by a slow start on Floor and a lackluster performance on Horizontal Bar, but having the best scores on Vault and Parallel Bars were enough to put him over Japan’s Kazuma Kaya. Kaya was as consistent as Verniaiev was up and down, but in the end he did not have enough to overtake the Ukrainian. China’s Sun Wei was the best on Pommel Horse and top three on Horizontal Bar for bronze.
Russians win DTB Team Challenge
Russian teams captured both the Men’s and Women’s titles at the DTB Challenge, a side competition held concurrently with the World Cup. The Russian women’s team, featuring 2016 Olympian Daria Spiridonova and newly crowned national champion Natalia Kapitonova, sailed over teams from Germany and Spain thanks to superior performances on Beam and Floor. The Russian men’s team, composed of young hopefuls, bested Germany and Japan.
The EnBW DTB-Pokal is the second of three Individual All-around World Cup event on the 2017 FIG calendar. After Stuttgart, the action turns to London April 8 for the conclusion of the series. In addition to a prize purse of 12,000 Swiss Francs, the Stuttgart World Cup winner gains 60 points in the All-around World Cup standings, with second place gaining 55, third 50 and so on. The national federation with the highest points total after all three stops wins the 2017 FIG World Series title.
1. Tabea Alt, Germany, 54.199
2. Angelina Melnikova, Russia, 53.732
3. Morgan Hurd, USA, 53.265
4. Pauline Schaefer, Germany, 53.231
5. Eythora Thorsdottir, Netherlands, 50.632
6. Zhang Jin, China, 50.032
7. Alice Kinsella, Great Britain, 47.099
1. Oleg Verniaiev, Ukraine, 84.899
2. Kazuma Kaya, Japan, 84.398
3. Sun Wei, China, 82.898
4. Nikita Ignatyev, Russia, 82.799
5. James Hall, Great Britain, 82.665
6. Lukas Dauser, Germany, 81.797
7. Allan Bower, USA, 81.699
8. Oliver Hegi, Switzerland, 81.165
9. Sebastian Krimmer, Germany, 76.964
Full results: DTB Online.
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