Everything You Need To Know: Worlds 2015 Edition – PART 1

It’s finally here!  The 2015 World Artistic Gymnastics Championships will commence THIS WEEKEND in Glasgow, Scotland.
The event will be held at the SSE Hydro Arena and will feature a strong team of gymnasts from both our Men’s (MAG) and Women’s (WAG) Artistic squads of Great Britain. I’ve thrown in some helpful information about following all our British competitors, but this blog focuses mainly on Women’s Artistic Gymnastics (WAG).

I’ve been looking forward to this event for a long time. It’s not only a chance for gymnasts from all over the globe to gather and compete, but this year it’s also being held at home in the UK, while serving a very important purpose: the Olympic qualification event.

What does that mean? Well, competing at the Olympic Games is not a right of passage. It doesn’t matter how good your country’s reputation is, or how many medals you’ve won before, the Olympic Games are special and each nation has an opportunity to earn a place to compete there.

So this is the competition that will determine that. The 2015 World Championships will decide which nations will be given a spot to compete at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.

Well… it will decide 8 out of the 12 Olympic Spots anyway… see (*).

How Do We Qualify for the 2016 Olympic Games?

In order for Great Britain to qualify, we must make it through to the Team final and then finish in the Top 8 ranked teams. This is the number one priority goal. While anything can happen on the competition floor, I am confident that our British ladies will be able to do this; our squad is one of the best we’ve ever had!

(*) If a nation fails to finish in the Top 8 ranked teams in the world, they probably won’t qualify a full team of gymnasts to the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. However, there is one more chance for those who do not qualify in Glasgow, as 4 more teams will be selected at the Rio Test Event next year, so eventually a total of 12 countries will be chosen and able to compete for team medals at the Olympics.

Individual gymnasts are also able to qualify to compete without a team, through a variety of other complex ways, that unfortunately I do not have the space to explain about that here.

As well as watching Team GB, make sure you also look out for Team Jamaica, where you’ll spot two familiar faces in Reiss Beckford (MAG) and Danusia Francis (WAG). London-born athletes, both Reiss and Danusia have competed for Great Britain very successfully in the past and were selected as reserves for the 2012 Olympics. Having recently switched to represent their Caribbean side, they now hope to make history by being the first ever Jamaican Olympic gymnasts at Rio 2016.

Let’s take a look at how the World Championships will run:

Schedule

23 October- WAG Qualification Day 1

Which women will compete in the Team, AA, and each apparatus Final will be decided today and tomorrow.

Great Britain will compete in Subdivision 4 around 4pm, alongside Brazil’s national team and two mixed groups of gymnasts from a variety of countries. They will start on Beam.

Last year’s bronze medal winning team Russia will also compete today.

24 October- WAG Qualification Day 2

Which women will compete in the Team, AA, and each apparatus Final will be decided today and yesterday.

Reigning world champions USA will compete today as well as 2014 Silver medalists China, and many more hoping to qualify to the Team Final where Olympic qualification will be decided (on October 27th for WAG).

Hold out until the last-but-certainly-not-least Subdivision 12 to see Danusia Francis competing for Jamaica as part of “Mixed Group 16”, starting on Floor at around 8pm.

25 October- MAG Qualification Day 1

Which men will compete in the Team, AA, and each apparatus Final will be decided today and tomorrow.

Great Britain’s MAG team will start the competition off in Subdivision 1 beginning around 9am, where they will start on Horizontal (High) Bar. Puerto Rico, Brazil and three Mixed Nationality Groups will rotate in this subdivision alongside them.

Later in the day reigning world champions China will compete, as well as close rivals Japan before Reiss Beckford, who will compete in “Mixed Group 8” in the final Men’s subdivision of the day (Subdivision 4), at around 8pm.

26 October- MAG Qualification Day 2

Which men will compete in the Team, AA, and each apparatus Final will be decided today and yesterday.

Ukraine, and last year’s bronze medalists USA, are just two of the many Men’s teams who will be fighting to get through to that all important Team Final today (on October 28th for MAG).

27 October- WAG Team Final

The 12 teams who qualified to the Women’s Team Final will compete from 5:50pm- 9:15pm. Try not to bite your nails too short as every routine will bring us closer to knowing who will have done enough to earn a spot at the Olympic Games!!

28 October- MAG Team Final

Likewise, the Top 12 Men’s Teams will compete today to determine which 8 will triumphantly qualify for the Olympic Games.

29 October- WAG AA Final

The Top 24 Women in the all around, from the initial two days of Women’s Qualification (Oct 23 & 24), will compete today to determine who will be the 2015 Individual All Around World Champion.

30 October- MAG AA Final

The Top 24 Men in the all around, from the initial two days of Men’s Qualification (Oct 25 & 26), will compete today to determine who will be the 2015 Individual All Around World Champion.

31 October (Halloween) – Apparatus Finals Day 1

Vault/ Bars – WAG

Floor/ Pommel Horse/ Rings – MAG

Individual Apparatus Champions will be crowned

1 November – Apparatus Finals Day 2

Beam/ Floor -WAG

Vault/ Parallel Bars/ Horizontal Bar- MAG

Individual Apparatus Champions will be crowned
This is the final day of competition.

It should be noted that once your country has secured its place at the Olympic Games, through the World Championships or a Test Event later, then individual athletes must still compete for a personal spot on that team, which is a whole new story… Your country can earn a certain number of places for the Olympic Games at events such as this World Championships, but the particular names are not fixed by who earned those places for that country.

Hope this all makes sense… !

See Part 2 for more about the competition itself and get to know our Women’s Team!

Best Wishes,

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