© John Cheng

MOSCOW, Russia, May 28, 2009 – 2008 Olympic bronze medalist Raj Bhavsar of Houston/Houston Gymnastics Academy, 2008 U.S. all-around champion David Sender of Arlington Heights, Ill./Stanford University, and 2007 U.S. floor exercise champion Guillermo Alvarez of Minneapolis/Minnesota Gymnastics, are competing in Moscow this weekend in the 2009 World Stars, an International Gymnastics Federation World Cup event held at the Sport Complex Olympisky on May 29-30.

The World Stars is Bhavsar’s first competition since the 2008 Olympic Games. Earlier this year, Sender finished second in the all-around at the 2009 Tyson American Cup, and Alvarez was fourth in the all-around at the 2009 Winter Cup.

In addition to returning to competition and scoring well, Bhavsar looks to extend his legacy in the sport by adding a new, original skill to his parallel bars routine, with the hopes of having it named after him. In accordance with FIG regulations, Bhavsar’s new skill – a dynamic above-bar release move – has been reviewed by the FIG Men’s Technical Committee and recently received a preliminary ranking. Once the skill is executed in an international competition, the FIG Men’s Technical Committee should officially acknowledge the skill. This would be the second Aca A BhavsarAca A in the FIG Code of Points; he already has a skill named after him on still rings.

More than 118 athletes from 31 countries are expected to compete in the 2009 World Cup meet, including Brazil’s Diego Hypolito, a former world champion, and Great Britain’s Louis Smith, a 2008 Olympic bronze medalist.