Larisa Iordache Set to Return
Larisa Iordache is set to make her return to major competition at the Stuttgart World Cup. This will take place in Germany on March 18-19. It's been nearly a year since we last saw Iordache in competition. In that time, Romania failed to qualify a team to the Olympics. Catalina Ponor was chosen as the Romanian delegate since they only had an individual spot. This competition will mean a lot to Iordache and also the Romanian federation. This will be a chance for all to see where she is in her training and give us an idea if Romania is set for better things this quadrennium.
There are new qualification rules to the 2020 Olympics to try and encourage higher level participation at the World Cups. USA did send athletes last year and seems like the trend will continue this year. New senior Jordan Chiles has been selected to compete. She was injured at the 2016 US Championships. She was one of the juniors the boasted incredibly high difficulty, including an Amanar vault. She has the potential to be in the running for the US Worlds team and this will likely be a step towards that selection.
Member of the Dutch Olympic team and all around finalist Eythora Thorsdottir will also be in the competition and looking for a medal. She recently competed at a meet in Iceland where she scored a 56.350. This was one of our first chances to see the new code in action. One of the things to note is that the scores are considerably lower with lower vault D scores, fewer composition requirements, and changes to some dismount rules. So this score would be the equivalent of about a 58. Thorsdottir is here and on a mission.
Canada's Isabela Onyshko is set to compete. She recently missed Elite Canada due to injury so we'll see if she's healed enough for the upcoming meet. Claudia Fragapane of Great Britain will set to compete in her first competition since the Olympics. She was recently on Strictly Come Dancing so there's much excitement to see what may have changed in her form and dance. Two of Germany's Olympians, Tabea Alt and Pauline Schaefer, will be in attendance in front of a home crowd. Rounding out the competition is China's Zhang Jin, who was sent to the 2016 Test Event.
2017 Stuttgart World Cup competitors - Women
Canada: Isabela Onyshko
China: Zhang Jin
Great Britain: Claudia Fragapane
Germany: Tabea Alt
Germany: Pauline Schaefer
Netherlands: Eythora Thorsdottir
Romania: Larisa Iordache
USA: Jordan Chiles
2017 Stuttgart World Cup competitors - Men
Brazil: Francesco Barreto
China: Sun Wei
Great Britain: James Hall
Germany: Lukas Dauser
Germany: Philipp Herder
Japan: Kazuma Kaya
Russia: Nikita Ignatyev
Ukraine: Oleg Vernaiev
USA: Sam Mikulak
The Stuttgart Team Challenge will take place alongside this competition March 17-19.