INDIANAPOLIS, Jan. 4, 2018 – The USA Gymnastics men’s program has selected the athletes who will represent the United States at the 2018 RD761 Junior International Team Cup, a prestigious junior international event that will feature seven teams from around the globe, at the Leonard Merrell Center in Katy, Texas, Jan. 19-20. The five members of the U.S. Team for the competition are 2017 champions: U.S. junior (17-18) all-around champion Brody Malone of Summerville, Ga./Cartersville Twisters; U.S. junior (15-16) pommel horse and parallel bars champion John Chou of Cypress, Texas/Cypress Academy of Gymnastics; 2017 Junior Olympic (13-14) Level 9 all-around gold-medalist Asher Hong of Tomball, Texas/Cypress Academy of Gymnastics; 2017 U.S. junior (15-16) all-around silver medalist Paul Juda of Deerfield, Ill./Buffalo Grove Gymnastics Center; and 2017 U.S. junior (15-16) vault champion Riley Loos of El Dorado Hills, Calif./Technique Gymnastics.
Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Great Britain and Japan are also scheduled to compete in the two-day event. Each country will have a five-man team, with four competing on each event and the top three scores counting for the team score. The competition schedule is: Jan. 19 – Team and all-around finals, 5 p.m.; and Jan. 20 – individual event finals, 5 p.m. The final rankings for the all-around are a maximum of two per country, and the top eight athletes, maximum two per country, on each event will advance to the event finals.
Three members of the U.S. men’s team have previous international experience from 2017: Malone, who claimed the horizontal bar silver medal at the International Junior Gymnastics Competition, in Yokohama, Japan; Hong, who won the Under 14 still rings and parallel bars title at the Berlin (Germany) Cup; and Juda, who was the floor exercise and vault champion at the 2017 RD761 International Team Cup and the University of Calgary (Canada) International Cup’s floor exercise, vault and high bar titlist. At the 2017 RD761 International Team Cup, the USA captured the team bronze medal. Chou and Loos are making their international elite debut.
The international athlete roster is listed below.
Willi Leonhard Binder
Pascal Patrick Brendel
Leven Tristan Guddat
The RD761 International Junior Team Cup is named in honor of U.S. Junior National Team member Ricky Deci, who tragically passed away in 2001. The annual RD761 age group invitational competition supports the Ricky Deci Memorial Fund, which in turn funds a USA Gymnastics elite development training camp held each summer at the U.S. Olympic Training Center. For more information, go to rd761.com.
Based in Indianapolis, USA Gymnastics is the national governing body for gymnastics in the United States. Its mission is to encourage participation and the pursuit of excellence in the sport. Its 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, log on to www.usagym.org.