USA Gymnastics Names World Championship Team

9:13 PM Arabian Punch Front 5 Comments



After a selection camp at the famed Karolyi Ranch in Texas, Martha Karolyi has named the 2015 World Championship Team. The team will be headlined by consecutive 2-time World All Around Champion Simone Biles, Olympic All Around Champion Gabrielle Douglas, and Olympic Floor Exercise Champion Aly Raisman.

Mykayla Skinner, 2014 World Championship team member, was named to the team, undoubtedly, for her vault and floor exercise. On vault, she has a decent shot at a medal this year with her Cheng and DTY/possible Amanar. Madison Kocian, also a member of the 2014 World Champion team, earns her spot in the lineup for her solid uneven bars. She has been the best in the US and is one of the top ranked gymnast on bars in the world, looking at a good chance of event finals and possibly the podium.

After missing out on the chance to be named to the 2014 team due to an injury, Maggie Nichols got back in the gym to rehab her knee. She's come back strong and was 2nd for most of the US domestic season earning herself much media attention. In addition to Biles, Douglas, and Raisman, Nichols rounds out the top 5 all arounders for the US aside from Bailie Key who was not named to the team.

To round out the team, Brenna Dowell has made a successful comeback from college to elite hitting her immensely difficult UB routine to make the team. In 2013, Brenna was named to the team then bumped to alternate in place of an entirely all around squad. In 2014, Brenna had an untimely injury that prevented her from being 100% for Nationals and the selection camp. For 2015, Dowell was able to finish her first collegiate season and also comeback and have a successful US domestic season. So successful that she was named to the team again. Now we wait to see if she will compete!

For now, the alternate will remain a mystery. Biles is a clear lock for the team. Douglas and Raisman, in my opinion, are also locks. Douglas supplies a much needed uneven bar routine and, reportedly, has shown her Amanar at camp making her all around marketability that much more impressive for the defending Olympic champ. Although Raisman does not thrive on uneven bars, her difficulty everywhere else is a huge asset for team USA. Being one of the top 2 Americans will be a competition in and of itself and Raisman is right up there with her Amanar and impressive floor set.

Skinner, Kocian, and Dowell all have event finals potential, not to mention Dowell having the possibility of getting the piked double front named after her. This leaves Nichols as the odd one out. An excellent all arounder but without the top 3 scores for the US on any one event but the immense ability to step up anywhere should anyone be injured or in qualifications. On the other hand, consistency has not always been on Kocian (other than this year) or Dowell's side.

Naming of the alternate will surely be interesting. What are your thoughts?


5 comments :

  1. I wish Bailie had made it. :( This is a great team though, and I am SOOOOO excited for Brenna!!!!! Just PLEASE don't let her be the alternate. :( Everyone is looking so strong!

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    1. I think 3rd time a charm for Brenna. There's no reason why marta would bother to take brenna again without serious thought of actually using her bc Brenna is not an evenly distributed AAer as well as also that she has EF and TF potentials. We are not privy to camp routines, but I am thinking that she has planned all along to peak at worlds (and not at classic or nationals). Unless Brenna implodes at last minute she most likely will compete this time around and not be the alt..

      I am sad for Bailie and also to an extent, Maggie. However, I actually think those two have higher potential for rio. When team shrinks, better AA are more valued. All they need to do is concentrate more on 1 or 2 events, which is likely easier than trying to get skinner or kocian or brenna to become a top 5 AA....

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    2. Yep! I was so surprised Bailie wasn't on the team. I wonder if she had a small injury or what. Her bars would be useful but not with both Madison and Brenna on the team (although we don't know the lineup). And i see people frequently mention her floor but imo her floor routines weren't going that well and I was worried she would hurt herself on that triple. We'll see what next year has in store for her! I really thought the team would be top 5+Madison but I guess not.

      I agree with replying anon that Martha wouldn't have put Brenna on the team *again* if she had no intention of using her. That's the only thing I can think.

      Which, yes, makes me very sad for Maggie if she indeed gets pushed aside. Simone, Aly, Gabby are safe and really any combination of the other 4 makes sense. We'll see!

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    3. Simone said that Maggie is not the alternate. Brenna is currently listed as the alternate and in the past, the alternate position has not changed unless there was injury. Brenna as alternate makes 100% sense, she cannot contribute anything to the team final but would bring a decent score on any event if someone was injured. I think she is a great fit, and I would be VERY irritated if she got the piked double front named after her, she is not the first to compete it.

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