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Ukrainian gymnasts won five gold medals at Varna World Challenge Cup

Ukrainian Olympians Igor Radivilov and Oleg Vernyayev have won five gold medals at the Varna World Challenge Cup in Bulgaria, combining five of the six titles.
Ukrainian gymnasts won five gold medals at Varna World Challenge Cup

The Ukrainian gymnasts Igor Radivilov and Oleg Vernyayev combined for five of the six titles at the Varna World Challenge Cup in Bulgaria. Radivilov added the vault title to go with his still rings from Saturday, while Vernyayev won parallel bars after winning floor exercise and pommel horse, Joinfo.ua reports with reference to the International Gymnast.

The FIG event attracted more than 100 gymnasts from 24 nations to the seaside city, with many using the competition as a warmup to the upcoming European championships in Bern. The competition is the ninth World Cup event of 2016.

Radivilov, the bronze medalist on vault at the 2012 Olympics, won the vault title Sunday after standing up his Dragulescu and Tsukahara double pike vaults (one step on each). France’s Zachari Hrimèche won the silver with clean landings on the same vaults. Israel’s Andrey Medvedev took third with a Blanik (piked handspring double front) and Tsukahara double pike.

Vernyayev overarched a peach to one rail but was unparalleled in the p-bars final, winning with a 15.833 (6.9 Difficulty). Axel Augis brought another silver for France (15.500/6.8) over Russia’s Dmitry Lankin (15.400/6.7).

Belarusian Andrei Likhovitsky won high bar with a clean but simple routine (layout Tkatchev; Yamawaki; German giants; stuck full-twisting double layout; 14.700/6.4). LithuanianRobert Tvorogal (Možnik; Tak-full to Yamawaki; layout Tkatchev; Tkatchev-half; double layout; 6.0D) and SlovenianAlen Dimic (layout Tkatchev; Možnik; Tkatchev-half; Tkatchev; layout double-double; 6.5D) tied for second with 14.267.

France’s Marine Boyer won balance beam with a very clean routine (RO, two-foot layout; switch leap, switch side; sissone, front aerial, sissone, wolf jump combo; side somi; RO, double pike; 14.500/6.2). Vietnamese Olympian Phan Thị Hà Thanh, the runner-up on vault on Saturday, won a second silver with a gorgeous routine (sissone, front aerial, wolf; ff, two-foot layout to sissone, switch leap, switch side; switch leap full with a large wobble; side aerial, sissone, side somi; RO, double pike; 14.367/6.3). The wonderfully elegant Ilaria Käslin (Switzerland) won the bronze (14.100/5.8). Top qualifier Marine Brevet (France) finished last after a hesitant routine with missed connections.

Vault champion Giulia Steingruber took a second gold with the floor exercise title (14.733/6.1), tumbling a clean layout full-in, double layout and tucked full-in (upgraded from double pike in qualification). Teammate Käslin won the silver (triple twist; double tuck; 2 1/2; 13.933/5.5) over Russia’s Yevgenia Shelgunova (1 1/2 to messy triple twist; piked full-in; double tuck; double pike; 13.767/5.9).

The FIG World Challenge Cup series continues next weekend, May 20-22, in São Paulo.