INDIANAPOLIS, Ind., June 22, 2010 – With the 2012 Olympic Games little more than two years away, USA Gymnastics and its athletes are beginning the road to London. This summer is packed with international and national events leading up to the 2010 Visa Championships in Harford, Conn., and culminating with the Youth Olympic Games and World Championships in all five disciplines.

“From June through August, all of five our disciplines are showcased through a variety of different events,” said Steve Penny, president of USA Gymnastics. “The summer leads into to a busy fall filled with world championships for artistic, rhythmic, and trampoline and tumbling. This is going to be a wonderful summer of gymnastics!”

Here’s a quick snapshot of the key events for this summer, in chronological order.

  • Chicago Cup, Chicago, Ill., June 25-26. The USA’s best rhythmic gymnasts will face some of the world’s top rhythmic gymnasts from 11 countries at the Chicago Cup, an international rhythmic gymnastics competition at Chicago’s Broadway Armory Park. The two-day competition features both all-around and individual event finals for both junior and senior divisions.

  • National Junior Olympic Championships The U.S. Junior Olympic Rhythmic Gymnastics Optional Championships are June 23-27 and are held in conjunction with the Chicago Cup. Approximately 200 of the country’s best Level 7-10 gymnasts will compete in the five-day competition on four apparatus – rope, hoop, ball and clubs. The all-around competition includes routines with all four apparatus. Approximately 1,600 athletes will compete in the National Trampoline and Tumbling Junior Olympic Championships June 27-July 2 in Virginia Beach, Va., held in conjunction with the U.S. Elite Challenge. Featuring competition in Levels 5-10, the events are trampoline, tumbling, double mini-trampoline and synchronized trampoline. Champions are named for each level and age group.

  • National qualifying events for Visa Championships. The U.S. Elite Challenge for trampoline and tumbling is June 24-27 in Virginia Beach, Va., held in conjunction with the National Trampoline and Tumbling Junior Olympic Championships. The men’s final qualifier for the Visa Championships is July 10 in Colorado Springs, Colo., and the rhythmic gymnastics qualifier is July 17-18 in Bloomfield, Mich.

  • World Acrobatic Gymnastics Championships, Wroclaw, Poland, July 9-11. The top acrobatic gymnasts from around the globe will converge on Wroclaw, Poland, for the 2010 World Championships. The U.S. Team for the World Championships was determined at the World Team Trials, June 3-6, in Huntsville, Texas. The USA’s Kristin Allen and Michael Rodrigues are the mixed pair gold medalists from the 2009 World Games and were second in the all-around at the 2008 World Championships. The World Age Group Competition is held in conjunction with the World Championships.

  • CoverGirl Classic, Chicago, Ill., July 24. The 2010 CoverGirl Classic will be held at the UIC Pavilion, located on the campus of the University of Illinois – Chicago. Featuring some of the USA’s top gymnasts, the CoverGirl Classic is the final qualifying event for junior and senior women for the 2010 Visa Championships. The elite gymnasts compete on June 24, with the Challenge Division, which features some of the country’s rising young gymnasts, on July 23 and 25.

  • Acrobatic Gymnastics National Championships, Kissimmee, Fla., July 24-28. The USA’s best acrobatic gymnasts are heading to Kissimmee, Fla., for the 2010 Acrobatic Gymnastics National Championships, July 24-28, at the Silver Spurs Arena. The championships showcase more than 500 of the nation’s top and up-and-coming acrobatic gymnasts, from the junior and senior elite to Junior Olympic Levels 5-10.

  • Visa Championships, Hartford, Conn., Aug. 10-14. The 2010 Visa Championships, USA Gymnastics’ national championships, features the country’s best gymnasts vying for national titles and spots on the U.S. National Team. Men’s and women’s gymnastics will be held at the XL Center, with rhythmic gymnastics and trampoline and tumbling staged at the Chase Arena at the University of Hartford. The competition will feature a mixture of veterans and rising stars.

  • Youth Olympic Games, Singapore, Aug. 14-26. The International Olympic Committee is hosting the inaugural Youth Olympic Games this year. The United States is sending a gymnast in each of three events: men’s gymnastics, rhythmic gymnastics and men’s trampoline. The athletes will be determined by the end of June.

  • World Rhythmic Gymnastics Championships, Moscow, Russia, Sept. 19-26. The world’s best rhythmic gymnasts will vie for titles at the World Championships in Moscow. The U.S. Team will be determined following the Visa Championships.

  • World Gymnastics Championships, Rotterdam, Netherlands, Oct. 17-24. Rotterdam will host the top men’s and women’s gymnasts from more than 70 nations at the 2010 World Championships. The championships will determine medalists in the team competition, as well as individual titles in the all-around and for individual apparatus. In 2009, the USA won five medals: Bridget Sloan, world all-around champion; Rebecca Bross, world all-around silver medalist and uneven bars bronze medalist; Kayla Williams, world vault gold medalist; and Ivana Hong, world balance beam bronze medalist. The U.S. Men’s Team will be named following the Visa Championships, and the U.S. Women’s Team will be determined at a selection training camp.

  • World Trampoline and Tumbling Championships, Metz, France, Nov. 11-13. At the 2009 World Championships, the USA won three medals: silver – women’s tumbling team; and bronze – men’s and women’s double mini-trampoline team. The World Age Group Competition will be held in conjunction with the World Championships.

National Gymnastics Day, the nationwide celebration of gymnastics and its benefits, is Sept. 18. Gym clubs across the nation hold a variety of events to recognize the sport, as well as host the Tyson Fitness Challenge to raise funds for the Children’s Miracle Network. The organization has raised more than $1.2 million for CMN since 2001.