VALENCIA, Spain – The U.S. rhythmic program will send Evita Griskenas (Orland Park, Ill./North Shore Rhythmic Gymnastics Center), Lili Mizuno (Northbrook, Ill./North Shore Rhythmic Gymnastics) and the Senior National Group to compete at the 2023 Rhythmic Gymnastics World Championships August 23-27 at the Feria Valencia in Valencia, Spain.
Six of the athletes named to the 2023 World Championships team are returning to the world stage after notching top 15-finishes during final competition at the 2022 World Championships in Sofia, Bulgaria. Individual Olympians Griskenas and Mizuno were each 10th and 12th, respectively, in the all-around at last year’s championships, while the U.S. Senior National Group was 15th all-around in group competition. The individual and group athletes also look to better their team standing during this year’s championships after placing fifth in the team competition in 2022.
Group Olympian Izzy Connor (Palos Verdes Estates, Calif.) joins the returners of Gergana Petkova (Barrington, Ill.), Katrine Sakhnov (Glencoe, Ill.), Karolina Saverino (Elk Grove Village, Ill.) and Hana Starkman (Deerfield, Ill.) to represent the U.S. in group events. The U.S. rhythmic World Championships team was named following the Worlds Championships training camp in Valencia. Alexandria Kautzman (Simi Valley, Calif./California Rhythms) will join the team as a non-competing individual, while Emily Wilson (Brooklyn, N.Y) and Daria Merkulova (Vernon Hills, Ill.) were named as replacement athletes for the Senior National Group.
The 2023 Rhythmic World Championships also serve as the second qualifier for the 2024 Paris Olympic Games. With 14 individual spots, limited to two per country, and five group spots up for grabs, the U.S. has a goal of securing up to three 2024 Olympic berths.
World Championships action commences in Valencia Wednesday, August 23 with Griskenas and Mizuno in Group C for hoop and ball qualifications at 9 a.m., ET followed by event finals at 3 p.m. ET. The two Olympians continue in Group C on Thursday with clubs and ribbons qualifications at 11 a.m., followed by finals at 3 p.m. ET.
Friday, August 25 will see the Senior National Group take the floor for the first time for five hoops and three ribbons and two balls qualifications in Group B at noon ET. Their performances in the qualifying rounds will determine their final all-around standing at the championships. Saturday’s schedule welcomes individual gymnasts back to the stage for all-around finals beginning at 9 a.m. ET. The competition concludes Sunday, August 27 with group event finals starting at 10 a.m. ET.
A full breakdown of the American competition schedule is listed below.
Wednesday, August 23
- Hoop and ball qualifications with U.S. in Group C, 9 a.m. ET
- Hoop final, 3 p.m. ET
- Ball final, 3:47 p.m. ET
Thursday, August 24
- Clubs and ribbon qualifications with U.S. in Group C, 11:30 a.m. ET
- Clubs final, 3 p.m. ET
- Ribbon final, 3:47 p.m. ET
Friday, August 25*
- Five hoops and three ribbons and two balls qualifications with U.S. in Group B, Noon ET
*Group all-around awards will follow qualifications
Saturday, August 26
- Individual all-around finals beginning at 9 a.m. ET
Sunday, August 27
- Five hoops final, 10 a.m. ET
- Three ribbons and two balls final, 11 a.m. ET
Visit rgvalencia2023.es for all available information on the 2023 Rhythmic Gymnastics World Championships in Valencia. Live scoring and streaming are expected to become available on the website closer to start of competition. Click here for the FIG’s microsite.