© Dan Pickard

INDIANAPOLIS, May 19, 2019 – Camila Feeley of Deerfield, Ill./North Shore Rhythmic Gymnastics Center, and Alexandria Kautzman of Westlake Village, Calif./Burlo Gymnastics, won the senior and junior all-around titles at the 2019 Rhythmic Elite Qualifier at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Lake Placid, N.Y. For group rhythmic gymnastics, the North-East Rhythmics senior group and Vitrychenko Academy junior group won the senior and junior group all-around crowns, respectively. Performances at the Elite Qualifier determine which junior and senior gymnasts advance to the USA Gymnastics Championships in Des Moines, Iowa, in July.

Feeley posted a 70.000 four-event total to earn the gold medal. She moved ahead of Evita Griskenas of Orland Park, Ill./North Shore Rhythmic Gymnastics Center, who posted a 69.300. Stasya Generalova of Los Angeles/California Rhythms, took third at 68.600. The event champions were: hoop – Feeley, 18.200; ball – Griskenas,19.100; clubs – Generalova, 18.500; and ribbon – Shannon Xiao of Fairfax, Va./Gymnastics World, 16.150. Feeley’s other event scores were: 18.300, ball; 17.900, clubs; and 15.600, ribbon.

For the juniors, Kautzman won the all-around title with her 62.000, edging out Jenna Zhao of Burr Ridge, Ill./Vitrychenko Academy, who posted a 61.400. Kautzman had the top ribbon score at 16.150, and her other event scores were 15.200, rope; 14.650, ball; and 16.100, clubs. Zhao posted the top event scores for rope (15.450) and ball (16.250). Victoria Kobelev was third at 60.950, which included the best clubs score of 16.900.

North-East Rhythmics senior group won the all-around title at 27.650 (13.700/five balls; 13.950/3 hoops/4 clubs), with Rhythmic Dreams group taking second with 25.750 (15.650/five balls; 10.100/3 hoops/4 clubs). In the junior group competition, the Vitrychenko group took first at 25.150 (14.700/hoop; 10.450/ribbon), and Eurogymnastics group followed at 11.300 (7.350/hoop; 3.950/ribbon).

Based on the athletes in attendance, the top 17 seniors in the all-around ranking will advance to the USA Gymnastics Championships, as well as the top 24 juniors, as elite level gymnasts. The additional national team members not competing at the Elite Qualifier and advancing to the USA Gymnastics Championship are seniors Laura Zeng of Libertyville, Ill./North Shore Rhythmic Gymnastics, Lennox Hopkins-Wilkins of Puyallup, Wash./Evergreen Rhythmics, and Elena Shinohara of Suwanee, Ga./Rhythmic Brains, and junior Isabelle Richardson of Las Vegas, Nev./Eurogymnastics. All four FIG groups competing at this event will advance to the elite USA Gymnastics Championships along with the senior FIG group that has represented the United States in international competition this year. This Elite Qualifier also served as qualification to the level 10 competition at the USA Gymnastics Championships. Any Level 9 juniors who ranked in the top 40 and any Level 9 seniors who ranked in the top 30 will become Level 10 gymnasts.

Rhythmic gymnastics is characterized by grace, beauty and elegance combined with dance and acrobatic elements, while working with the apparatus in a choreographed routine to music. The five apparatus used in rhythmic gymnastics are rope, hoop, ball, clubs, and ribbon. Rhythmic gymnasts may compete individually or as a group. The choreography must cover the entire floor with intricate apparatus handling, dance combinations, jumps, leaps, rotations, and balance difficulties. Each movement involves a high degree of athletic skill. Physical abilities needed by a rhythmic gymnast include strength, power, flexibility, agility, dexterity, endurance and hand-eye coordination.

Based in Indianapolis, USA Gymnastics is the national governing body for gymnastics in the United States. The organization is committed to creating a culture that encourages and supports its athletes and focuses on its highest priority, the safety and well-being of the athletes. USA Gymnastics has taken specific, concrete steps to strengthen its athlete safety policies and procedures. Former gymnast and business executive Li Li Leung is the new president and chief executive officer of USA Gymnastics. The organization’s disciplines include men’s and women’s artistic gymnastics, rhythmic gymnastics, trampoline and tumbling, acrobatic gymnastics and gymnastics for all (formerly known as group gymnastics). For more complete information, visit usagym.org.