GHENT, Belgium – The U.S. Women claimed two silver and two bronze medals at the 2006 World Cup event in Ghent, Belgium. Ashley Priess of Hamilton, Ohio, earned a silver and a bronze medal in the balance beam and floor exercise, respectively. Alicia Sacramone of Winchester, Mass., took the silver medal in the vault, with Hilary Mauro of Shrewsbury, Mass., claiming the bronze in the beam.

Both men – Justin Spring of Burke, Va., who trains at the University of Illinois, and Jimmy Wickham of Gulfport, Miss., who trains at Ohio State University – advanced to event finals, which is an accomplishment in itself. Spring advanced to the finals in both of his preliminary competitive events, the parallel bars and horizontal, finishing tied for sixth and eighth, respectively. Wickham, who competed in preliminary competition on floor exercise and vault, was seventh in the vault finals.
Priess and Mauro, both of whom train at the Cincinnati Gymnastics Academy, were two-three in the balance beam, finishing behind Spain’s Lenika de Simone. In the floor exercise, de Simone again won the gold medal, with the silver going to her teammate Patricia Morena and the bronze to Priess. Sacramone finished behind Uzbekistan’s Oxana Chusovitina, the 2003 world vault champion who finished just ahead of Sacramone at the 2005 World Championships. Mauro also advanced to the finals in the uneven bars, where she finished seventh.
The champions in Ghent in the men’s events were: Evgeni Bogonosyuk of Ukraine, floor exercise; Xiao Qin of China, pommel horse; Matteo Angioletti of Italy, still rings; Anton Golotsutkov of Russia, vault; Huang Xu of China, parallel bars; and Aljaz Pegan of Slovenia, horizontal bar.
The World Cup featured individual apparatus competition. Held at the Flanders Sports Arena, the competition featured athletes from 21 countries for the women, including China, Netherlands, Russia and Ukraine, and 30 countries for the men, including China, Japan, Russia, Slovakia and Ukraine.