Eight of the best floor specialists in the world competed in the event final that took place, on Tuesday afternoon in Rio.
Mai Murakami of Japan, qualified in 7th position was first up. She opened her routine with a massive double- double, well executed but with a hop; her second pass was a full in stretched position a bit low, with a step forward, an amazing 2 ½ twist to punch full hop front, turn in squat and finished with a double pike stuck. A good effort from Mai but not improved compared to qualifications – 14.533/6.3
Yan Wang (5th in qualifications) had one of my favorite routines, the combo of dramatic music and her choreo and huge tumbling do not fail to give me goosebumps every time: double double stuck, 1 ½ to triple full punch front, 2 ½ to half layout, double pike to finish. Well done but only a 14.666/6.3.
Erika Fasana of Italy, had qualified in 8th position but she was no stranger to major floor finals: double double chest low but stuck, immediate double layout with a tiny hop forward, she finished with a double pike (hop forward). Some execution errors but good routine overall: 14.533/6.1
Amy Tinkler (qualified 6th) was up next. As the sole Brit qualified to the event finals she must have felt a huge pressure on her shoulders. But was able to deliver some huge tumbling: full in stretched very high and safely done, double-double stuck, 1 ½ to double back tuck stuck, double pike stuck. She had great amplitude, matched with some of the best landings; this surely made an impact on the judges: 14.933 with her highest difficulty (6.4).
Up fifth in this final, a gymnast you may have heard of – Simone Biles. Started with her signature dance to full in stretched with a hop, followed by the Biles to leap ( combo executed almost to perfection), 1 ½ turn in squat, stuck double- double on her third pass. Mid-way though her floor routine Simone shook the memory of the beam mistake and started enjoying competing again. Ended with a full in with a hop back. She was rewarded with a 15.966/6.9.
Will Giulia Steingruber, qualified on 4th, be able to challenge? She started with a switch leap with half twist and a stumble, the nerves were showing. She went for the Silivas but had a huge rebound from the landing and touched the floor with her hands. Disappointed, chose to just do the double layout (stuck) instead of the full in layout. She ended with a full in double back tuck but put her hands down again. 11.800/5.4
Alexandra Raisman, the Olympic champion from four years ago was a favorite for a medal here. Simone was out of reach with her massive 15.966 at this point. But the silver still had to be earned: started with the great combo of 1 ½ twists to double Arabian to front layout, the double L turn, a stuck pike Arabian to jump (was it connected, there was little rebound), then a stuck double layout on the third pass, some messy leaps, and a huge double pike with a tiny hop to finish. Mission accomplished: 15.500/6.6
Vanessa Ferrari, the last gymnast competing in this final, has been though the worst of times for the past few years, through illness and injury but fought to be in Rio and be able to chase her dream of getting an Olympic medal. She would have needed to improve on her qualifying score of 14.866 to “beat” Tinkler for bronze, but stuck landings are her specialty after all. She started with a double double stuck, followed by a stuck double layout, Ferrari leap look great finishes the routine with a double back pike but couldn’t hold on to the landing and she took two steps back. And those were two steps too many as she was given a 14.766/6.3 to finish 4th in this final.
Here are the final results:
1 391 BILES Simone USA 6.900 9.066 15.966 2 395 RAISMAN Alexandra USA 6.600 8.900 15.500 3 342 TINKLER Amy GBR 6.400 8.533 14.933 4 356 FERRARI Vanessa ITA 6.300 8.466 14.766 5 327 WANG Yan CHN 6.300 8.366 14.666 6 354 FASANA Erika ITA 6.100 8.433 14.533 7 361 MURAKAMI Mai JPN 6.300 8.233 14.533 8 385 STEINGRUBER Giulia SUI 5.400 6.700 -0.3 11.800
Article: Bea Gheorghisor
Photo Source: USA Gymnastics