Krystyna Sankova and Maksym Semyankiv of the Ukraine were the champions of the Sokol Grand Prix in Brno, Czech Republic held over the weekend. The Austrian team of Jasmin Mader and Daniel Kopeinik placed second, while the Czech team of Anna-Maria Kanyai and Daniel Radovesnicky were third.
Like the Swiss Cup, the meet was a mixed pairs event with the format featuring three rounds of competition. In the first round, all gymnasts competed on two apparatus. In the semi-finals, the top eight pairs performed on a third apparatus with scores from the first round not counting into their total. In the final round, the four best pairs from the semi-finals again began on a fresh slate and competed on any one apparatus (including one already competed in a previous round).
Due to the lack of full teams from each country, some gymnasts competed as pairs with gymnasts from other nations, though none of these mixed nation teams made it through to finals.
Ukraine was in the lead at the very beginning with a 55.0. Sankova hit her routines on vault (including a lovely FTY) and floor while teammate Semyankiv looked clean and polished on floor and pommel horse. The Czech gymnasts qualified to semi-finals with a 53.6 thanks to Kanyai’s excellent beam routine and hit bars set, and then Radovesnicky’s polished, albeit easy, vaults and decent p-bars. A mixed team featuring Czech junior Veronika Cenkova (the nation’s Youth Olympic Games competitor this summer) and Swedish gymnast Michael Trane qualified in third place with a 52.7 after both showed their skill on vault and floor.
Eliminated in the first round were two mixed teams, one featuring Marie Nevrklova of the Czech Republic and Christopher Soos of Sweden, and the other featuring Dagmar Lovetinska of the Czech Republic and Victor Pozuelo of Spain.
|Rank||Athlete||Nation||Event 1||Score||Event 2||Score||Total|
|2||Anna-Maria Kanyai||Czech Republic||UB||13.350||BB||14.250||53.600|
|Daniel Radovesnicky||Czech Republic||VT||13.050||PB||12.950|
|3||Veronika Cenkova||Czech Republic||VT||13.325||FX||12.750||52.700|
|8||Jana Weisserova||Czech Republic||BB||11.200||FX||11.750||49.300|
|9||Marie Nevrklova||Czech Republic||VT||12.650||FX||10.100||48.650|
|10||Dagmar Lovetinska||Czech Republic||FX||11.600||VT||12.550||47.375|
Sankova and Semyankiv stayed at the top with a 28.4 during the semi-finals, despite Sankova’s struggles on her difficult beam set. Her difficulty and a textbook p-bars set from Semyankiv made them no match for the competition, however, as the Czech team followed right behind them with a 28.05 after Kanyai’s lovely vaults and Radovesnicky’s clean floor.
The Austrian team of Christina Meixner and Michael Fussenegger was the third team to qualify to the final with a 27.825. Meixner hit her vaults while Fussenegger killed it on rings, earning the top score of the semi-final with his 14.9. Finally, Mader and Kopeinik of Austria qualified fourth with a 27.225 after Mader hit some beautiful vaults but Kopeinik struggled a bit on floor.
This round, two mixed Czech and Swedish teams were eliminated (one featuring Cenkova and Trane, and the other featuring Jana Weisserova and Pontus Kallanvaara), as were the Austrian/Spanish team featuring Marlies Männersdorfer and Christian Bazan, and finally the Germany/Spanish team featuring Johanna Deutschmann and Ismael Romero.
|2||Anna-Maria Kanyai||Czech Republic||VT||4.4
|Daniel Radovesnicky||Czech Republic||FX||5.5||8.950||14.450|
|5||Veronika Cenkova||Czech Republic||BB||5.1||7.850||12.950||26.250|
|7||Jana Weisserova||Czech Republic||UB||3.4||7.350||10.750||24.400|
In the final round, Sankova competed on vault again, performing another very clean FTY as well as a handspring front pike for a 13.85 average. Semyankiv went for a high bar routine, and though it wasn’t without mistakes, he still managed to pull in a 14.75, helping them to their 28.6 finish.
Mader also opted to compete on vault this round, and though she hit her handspring front tuck rather nicely, she fell on her FTY, earning a 13.225. Kopeinik on pommel horse meanwhile hit a decent routine for a 13.7, giving them a 26.925 to end their day in silver medal position.
Radovesnicky finished things up for the Czech team on high bar with a solid routine for a 13.95. Despite the rest of her day looking strong, Kanyai unfortunately fell on floor, coming up with just a 12.5 to give them a 26.45 overall finish, earning bronze.
Though the Austrian team of Meixner and Fussenegger also earned a 26.45, they were awarded fourth place, though I’m not sure what the tie-breaker was. Meixner made mistakes on her very low-difficulty beam routine, earning a 12.0, while Fussenegger hit his floor routine nicely for a 14.45.
|3||Anna-Maria Kanyai||Czech Republic||FX||5.2||7.300||12.500||26.450|
|Daniel Radovesnicky||Czech Republic||HB||5.3||8.650||13.950|
Article by Lauren Hopkins