INDIANAPOLIS, January 7, 2021 – The 2021 Nastia Liukin Cup Series kicks off this weekend with the Atlanta Crown Invitational in Duluth, Ga. The series will determine the 18 junior and 18 senior USA Gymnastics Women’s Development Program Level 10 athletes that will compete at the 2021 Nastia Liukin Cup February 26 at the Indiana Convention Center in Indianapolis in conjunction with this year’s expanded Winter Cup. The qualification series will conclude the weekend of February 12-15.
This year’s Nastia Liukin Cup will not be open for public attendance but will air live on NBCSN Friday, February 26 at 2:30 p.m. ET.
Due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, several of the 18 participating invitationals, which were originally announced in July, have been cancelled, and their qualification spots have been awarded to the event that is geographically closest. These changes have been noted below.
- Atlanta Crown Invitational, Duluth, Ga., Jan. 8-10 – (2 JR and 2 SR qualifiers)
- Chow’s Winter Classic Invitational, Des Moines, Iowa, Jan. 15-17 – (1 JR and 1 SR qualifier)
- CANCELLED: Star Struck Invitational, Atlantic City, N.J., Jan. 15-17 – spots awarded to Excalibur Cup (Feb. 12-14, Virginia Beach, Va.)
- CANCELLED: Coaches Spectacular, Covington, Ky., Jan. 15-17 – spots awarded to Buckeye Classic (Feb. 5-7, Columbus, Ohio)
- CANCELLED: Lady Luck Invitational, Las Vegas, Nev., Jan. 15-17 – spots awarded to Brestyans Las Vegas Invitational (Feb. 12-14, Las Vegas, Nev.)
- CANCELLED: 2021 UGA Invitational, Tinley Park, Ill., Jan. 22-24 – (1 JR and 1 SR qualifier)
- Sand Dollar/Whitlow Invitational, Orlando, Fla., Jan. 22-24 (1 JR and 1 SR qualifier)
- Fiesta Bowl Invitational, Chandler, Ariz., Jan. 22-24 (1 JR and 1 SR qualifier)
- CANCELLED: Houston National Invitational, Galveston, Texas, Jan. 28-31 – spots awarded to WOGA Classic (Feb. 5-7, Frisco, Texas)
- Buckeye Classic, Columbus, Ohio, Feb. 5-7 (2 JR and 2 SR qualifiers)
- CANCELLED: Greensboro Gymnastics Invitational, Greensboro, N.C., Feb. 5-7 – spots awarded to Atlanta Crown Invitational (Jan. 8-10, Duluth, Ga.)
- CANCELLED: Pikes Peak Cup, Colorado Springs, Colo., Feb. 5-7 – spots awarded to Metroplex Challenge (Feb. 12-14, Fort Worth, Texas)
- WOGA Classic, Frisco, Texas, Feb. 5-7 (2 JR and 2 SR qualifiers)
- Brestyans Las Vegas Invitational, Las Vegas, Nev., Feb. 12-14 (2 JR and 2 SR qualifiers)
- Charity Choice Invitational, Tacoma, Wash., Feb. 12-15 (1 JR and 1 SR qualifier)
- Excalibur Cup, Virginia Beach, Va., Feb. 12-14 (2 JR and 2 SR qualifiers)
- Metroplex Challenge, Fort Worth, Texas, Feb. 12-14 (2 JR and 2 SR qualifiers)
- Presidential Classic, Orlando, Fla., Feb. 12-14 (1 JR and 1 SR qualifier)
The 2021 series will mark the 12th annual edition of the Cup, which was launched in 2010 by 2008 Olympic all-around champion and 14-time Olympic and World medalist Nastia Liukin. Cup finalists will receive a Nastia Liukin-designed leotard and warm-up from GK Elite and will have the opportunity to meet Liukin onsite at the event.
- Nastia Liukin. At the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, Liukin’s total of five medals tied the U.S. gymnastics record for most medals in one Olympic Games. Liukin’s Olympic medals are: gold – all-around; silver – team, balance beam and uneven bars; and bronze – floor exercise. Liukin was the third of five U.S. women to win the Olympic all-around crown. She also won nine World medals in her career. In 2018, she was inducted into the International Gymnastics Hall of Fame, and in 2019, she was named to the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Hall of Fame. Liukin has graced many magazine covers and appeared on various shows, including “Gossip Girl,” “Make It or Break It,” and the feature film, “Stick It.” Liukin was a contestant in the 2015 spring edition of “Dancing with the Stars” and was the grand marshal for the 2015 Indianapolis 500. She currently serves as a gymnastics analyst for NBC Sports and is a founder of Grander, a global community for the next generation of female athletes that provides access to the people who inspire, resources to help achieve dreams, and communities of like-minded people with similar ambitions. Liukin was coached by her father, Valeri, who has four Olympic medals from 1988 including two gold.
- USA Gymnastics. Based in Indianapolis, USA Gymnastics is the national governing body for gymnastics in the United States, encompassing seven disciplines: women’s gymnastics, men’s gymnastics, trampoline and tumbling, rhythmic gymnastics, acrobatic gymnastics, gymnastics for all (a.k.a. group gymnastics) and, most recently, parkour. USA Gymnastics sets the rules and policies that govern the sport of gymnastics, including selecting and training the U.S. Gymnastics Teams for the Olympics and World Championships; promoting and developing gymnastics on the grassroots and national levels, as well as a safe, empowered and positive training environment; and serving as a resource and educational center for the more than 200,000 members, clubs, fans and gymnasts throughout the United States. The organization is deeply committed to creating a culture that encourages and supports its athletes and focuses on its highest priority: the safety and well-being of athletes and our community.