Courtesy of USAGYM.ORG

LONDON, July 29, 2012 – After three of five subdivisions in the qualification round, the U.S. women lead the team standings with a total of 181.863, finishing ahead of Great Britain (170.656) and Italy (168.397), respectively, at the 2012 Olympic Games at the North Greenwich Arena. The qualification round determines which countries and athletes qualify for the finals, which will be determined after the completion of the fifth subdivision. The USA’s Aly Raisman of Needham, Mass./Brestyan’s American Gymnastics, and Gabby Douglas of Virginia Beach, Va./Chow’s Gymnastics and Dance Institute, are one-two in the all-around standings at this point in the competition. Jordyn Wieber of DeWitt, Mich./Gedderts’ Twistars USA, finished third.

The U.S. Women’s Team features: Douglas, McKayla Maroney of Long Beach, Calif./All Olympia Gymnastics Center, Raisman, Kyla Ross of Aliso Viejo, Calif./Gym-Max Gymnastics, and Wieber.

The USA posted the highest team scores for vault (47.633), balance beam (45.441) and floor exercise (43.757) thus far.

Women’s National Team Coordinator Martha Karolyi said, “I’m very pleased with how the competition went. We proved we are very well prepared. They hit all of their routines, which is what I expected. We did have some tiny mistakes here and there that we will correct for the team finals.”

Raisman and Douglas had the top all-around scores for first three subdivisions of 60.391 and 60.265, respectively. Wieber finished third with a score of 60.032.

The USA women started on vault with four solid Yurchenko two-and-a-half twists, also known as Amanars. Raisman started the team off scoring a 15.800. Douglas scored a 15.900 followed by Wieber’s 15.833. 2011 world vault champion Maroney finished strong scoring a 15.900 on her Amanar and a 15.700 on her Yurchenko half on front layout full off, for an average score of 15.800, which makes her first in the vault rankings as of now. Any gymnast vying for a spot in the vault event finals must do two vaults from two different families; the first vault score counts for the team total.

On uneven bars, Raisman started the USA Team out with a solid routine, including a Shaposhnikova, Yaeger and Tkatchev to double front dismount to score a 14.166. Wieber followed with her Weiler kip half turn to Shaposhnikova, Tkatchev and full-twisting double layout dismount to score a 14.833. Ross’ strong routine with beautiful lines included a Shaposhnikova to Pak, Shaposhnikova half Stalder half to Yaeger and she dismounted with a stuck double layout. Ross earned a 14.866. Douglas finished out the bar line-up showing excellent lines and incredible amplitude. Her routine included an Endo, two huge Tkatchevs, and a double layout dismount. Douglas scored a 15.333, the highest bar score for Team USA.

On balance beam, Ross scored a 15.075 for her routine, which included a front aerial to flip flop layout step out, a side somi and a double tuck dismount. Douglas wowed the audience, scoring a 15.266 with her standing full and flip flop, flip flop to double pike dismount. Wieber’s routine was loaded with skills including a combination front handspring to standing full to flip flop. She dismounted with a flip flop, flip flop, two-and-a-half twist. Wieber scored a 14.700. Raisman anchored beam with her solid routine that included a flip flop to layout, side aerial, front tuck, front pike and a double Arabian dismount. Raisman scored a 15.100.

On the final event of the day, floor exercise, Ross once again led off for the USA with her routine, which included a double Arabian mount and a double tuck dismount to score a 13.733. She had an out-of-bounds deduction on her first pass. Douglas’ routine included a one-and-a-half to triple full mount. Unfortunately she also stumbled out-of-bounds on her double Arabian for a 13.766. Wieber did a difficulty packed routine, sticking her double-twisting double-back mount and a one-and-a-half to triple full to jump for her second pass. Wieber earned a 14.666. Raisman anchored the team with her powerful floor routine, showing a one-and-a-half to double Arabian, punch layout front for her first pass and a piked double Arabian to jump for her second pass, to claim a 15.325.

Quotes from the Team

Aly Raisman
Regarding watching the scores, Raisman said, “I wasn’t watching any scores since I was last on beam and floor. I cheered for the team but I turned around so I wasn’t watching their full routines.”

About competing as a team, she said, “Before we marched out we talked about how we want to have fun here and really enjoy it. We talked about going out and hitting all of our routines just like at 2011 World Championships and that’s what we did. I’m really proud of our team.”

Gabby Douglas
Regarding the team and personal performance, she said, “It was an amazing feeling competing today for Team USA. I think I did very well. I definitely have room for improvement though – I made little mistakes on beam and floor, but that is what training is for and we’ll go back and fix it up for team finals.”

McKayla Maroney
Regarding the team performance, she said, “It went well today. Team USA did awesome. I was so proud. We came in 1, 2, 3 (in the all-around) – I was so proud.”

Regarding her vault and what she plans to do for the next competition, she said, “The same thing, but better!”

Kyla Ross
Regarding team, she said, “It was definitely exciting competing here today. I was surprised I wasn’t too nervous. I thought we did well and hopefully we can come back in team finals and fix our little mistakes and do even better.”

Jordyn Wieber
On missing out of the all-around finals, she said, “It is a bit of a disappointment. It has always been a dream of mine to compete in the all-around final of the Olympics, but I’m proud of Aly and Gabby, and happy that they reached the all-around and that I was able to help the team get to the finals. I think from the beginning, we were all looking very strong. It was always going to be close between the three of us doing all-around and in the end, it is what it is.”

Gymnastics continues tomorrow with the men’s team finals at 4:30 p.m., followed by the women’s team finals on July 31. The men’s all-around is on Aug. 1, followed by the women’s all-around on Aug. 2. The individual event finals are Aug. 3-4.