Brescia Wins Serie A, Pihan-Kulesza Retires

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The team from Brixia Brescia won the fourth and final Italian Serie A meet of the year with a score of 140.15, earning 30 points toward the overall Serie A ranking. Artistica 81 Trieste came in second place with a 139.2 to earn 27 points, while Pro Lissone was third with a 135.75 for 25 points. Being on top of the overall ranking, Brixia Brescia claimed the 2016 Scudetto, the trophy for the highest-placing team of the season.

The Turin meet marked the comeback of Vanessa Ferrari, who finally competed again after undergoing a new treatment for tendinitis. She performed only on beam, where she delivered a watered-down routine featuring a bhs bhs loso series, switch leap, ring leap, leap to front aerial, switch half (not at 180), sheep jump, and a double pike dismount with a step back, earning a 13.5. The routine looked shaky overall, especially on landings, where she stumbled a bit, but it’s a good starting point after months without competing. She wore a sort of protection sock for her tendon, meaning that she’s probably not completely pain-free, though she will pull herself together with the aim of reaching the Olympic Games in Rio, which will be the final competition of her long career.

Erika Fasana had several issues on bars, where she posted only a 12.8, though she did debut her new floor routine. The tumbling was clearly watered-down from her usual standards, as she performed a double layout, a stuck full-in, and a double pike for a 14.1. While her tumbling looked mostly fine, her dance skills need to be polished. She attempted a Memmel turn but stumbled out of it almost immediately, and her Ferrari leap probably wasn’t credited, as her rear leg was too low.

Martina Rizzelli showed her DTY for the first time this year. It was with the usual leg separation on the block, however, earning a 14.35. On bars, she delivered a routine with a 6.2 d-score, including a Church, Ricna to pak, Maloney to bail to stalder full to Ray, and a stuck full-in dismount for a 14.55.

Sofia Busato is still limited to vault, where she hit a powerful DTY earning a huge 15.35. Though she is by far the best Italian on vault, her injuries have prevented her from upgrading the other events, likely taking her out of contention for the Games.

Tea Ugrin is still recovering from a nagging injury that forced her to skip the Test Event she had originally been selected for. She had a solid bars routine for a 14.1, but had some issues on beam, scoring a 13.65. On floor she still hasn’t upgraded her tumbling, and earned only a 13.45 here.

Although Enus Mariani showed a strong performance on floor, where her clean routine was worth a 14.3 (d-score of 5.5), her attempts on bars and beam were less successful, having issues on both and earning respectively a 13.5 and a 13.0. Her consistency rate is not improving, which could put in jeopardy her nominative spot for the upcoming Euros. Her FTY was one of her best ever, though, earning a 14.35.

Lara Mori didn’t have the best day either, suffering a significant form break on her Endo on bars, though the rest of the routine was mostly fine, earning a 13.65. She then made several mistakes on beam, where she posted only a 12.55. On floor, she performed a full-in hopped on the landing, a Memmel to illusion turn, a triple full with a step back and out-of-bounds, a double tuck landed with her chest very low, and a double pike for a 13.6. Her FTY looked a bit tucked, but she was still rewarded with a 14.0.

Elisa Meneghini is recovering from a bad flu, and thus she scratched beam and watered down routines on the other apparatuses. She delivered a clean FTY on vault for a 14.2, while on bars she earned a 13.6. On floor, she heavily downgraded her tumbling, and picked up just a 12.85.

After her frightening fall on her beam dismount suffered in Jesolo, Carlotta Ferlito returned back to competition with downgraded routines on bars and beam. Unfortunately, she had falls on both, respectively on her stalder full and her back tuck. Since she won’t be part of the Euros team, she is training with the aim to peak properly in Rio for the Games, while the gymnasts whose Olympic spots aren’t yet guaranteed will be tested at Euros in Bern next month.

The nominative list for the Italian women’s team currently includes Fasana, Mariani, Meneghini, Mori, and Rizzelli. It’s still open to changes, though there aren’t many other healthy gymnasts who could challenge the group mentioned above.

I’d like to see them give Federica Macri a shot, however. Macri, 25, is a 2008 Olympian who continues to compete at local meets in Italy, showing immense strength on vault as well as solid tumbling on floor. Without the bonus, her all-around score last weekend was a 55.95, stronger than any of those on the Euros roster thanks mostly in part to her DTY upgrade, which scored second only to Busato. She had clean work on floor as well, and in the absence of any other real power gymnasts on the team, I think she could help out at Euros quite a bit.

Last but not least, the Serie A meet in Turin was the final competition of Marta Pihan-Kulesza‘s career. She struggled on bars, earning an 11.7, but hit a solid beam routine worth a 13.95, the top score on that event all day. After the competition, the Italian Federation celebrated the Polish legend, who has competed as a guest in the Italian Serie A with the Pro Lissone team for many years. For more about her career and retirement, read our announcement.

Article by Valeria Violi

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2 thoughts on “Brescia Wins Serie A, Pihan-Kulesza Retires

  1. Pingback: Programa 006 – Voy a meterme en un jardín… – Podcast Asimétricas

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