While Gymnastics fans across the globe are readying themselves for the summer, excitement is building and all eyes are focused on the potential stars of the 2015 World Championships and beyond. While much of the focus will be on respective countries National Championships, one smaller competition should be marked on the calendar of every Gymnastics fan wishing to predict the future stars of the Gymnastics world. The 30th of May 2015 saw the 2015 American Classic take place at the Karolyi Ranch in Huntsville, Texas. While not televised and the roster is not filled with household names, the American Classic holds a special significance in the Gymnastics world. The competition gives little known gymnasts a chance to get their name out to Gymnastics fans, it helps Gymnasts become known to Women’s National Team Co-Ordinator, Martha Karolyi and most importantly it qualifies Gymnasts to the US Elite domestic competitions. And from there…who knows where those Gymnasts may go!?
Take a look at past junior winners and see that winning the American Classic is not easy, it is the cream of the crop that come to compete and it is the future stars that win!
2014: Jazmyn Foberg
Jazmyn Foberg, as the 2014 AA Champion of the American Classic was the weak link of the MG Elite trio, until her triumph at the Classic. After that, Foberg went on to place 6th AA at the U.S Classic, become Junior AA National Champion at the P&G Championships, make the National team and travel to Italy to compete at the Jesolo Trophy and place 3rd AA in the Junior Division. As of now, Foberg is a huge factor in the American Gymnastics scene, readying herself for the Elite season and will ultimately become a legitimate contender for the 2016 Olympics in Rio De Janeiro.
2013 Session 1: Jordan Chiles
This girl is a star. Jordan’s name just keeps popping up. After her win at the 2013 American Classic, Jordan went on to compete at the 2014 Jesolo Trophy in Italy and place 2nd on Vault and 6th AA, place 1st AA at the 2014 U.S Classic, place 4th AA at the P&G Championships and make the National Team. While it’s hard to say what will happen in Jordan’s future with regards to Olympic glory as unfortunately she’s not eligible to make the Olympic team until 2020, Chiles is surely bound for great Gymnastics success and is definitely a future star, who’s career was launched at the American Classic.
2013 Session 2: Ariana Agrapides
Another MG Elite winner! This girl even beat her MG Elite teammate and current US National Team Member, Lauren Hernandez to take the title of American Classic Champion. While Agrapides is currently taking a break from Gymnastics, she is definitely is a star and will factor heavily in the US Gymnastics scene in the future. Agrapides has already started to make an impact, following her American Classic triumph Agrapides went on to become 2013 US Junior National Vault Champion and place 2nd on the same event at the U.S Classic. While, like Chiles, Ariana won’t become eligible for Olympic selection until 2020, she is bound for success as it was carved out for her when she became 2013 American Classic Champion, joining a long list of great Gymnasts.
2012 Session 1: Meredith Sylvia
While this talented gymnast didn’t choose to pursue the Elite path and ultimately decided to compete as a Level 10 Gymnast, her success as a Level 10 Gymnast is something to be proud of. Following her American Classic triumph, Sylvia went on to compete at the 2012 VISA Championships, placing 18th AA. However as a Level 10 Gymnast is where Meredith truly shined. 2014 saw Meredith place 3rd AA at the State Championships, become the Region 7 AA Champion and place 6th AA at The J.O National Championships. On top of this, Meredith is also committed to Auburn University on a Gymnastics scholarship and will attend in 2017.
2012 Session 2: Simone Biles
Is there any need to explain how the American Classic launched an amazing career for this Gymnast? Entering this competition Simone was a relatively unknown Gymnast, fast forward to 2015 and she is a two time World AA Champion and two time US National Champion and is practically unbeatable. In addition to her amazing AA results in 2013 and 2014, after the American Classic Simone went on to win the 2012 U.S Classic in the Junior division, place 3rd AA at the 2012 VISA Championships in the Junior division, become a two time World Floor Exercise Champion, a World Balance Beam Champion, make it to every final at the 2013 World Championships, become 2015 American Cup Champion, oh and gain a scholarship to UCLA. Simone will attend UCLA following the 2016 Olympics in Rio, where she will undoubtedly earn some more hardware, mostly gold of course.
Evidently, the American Classic, while a much more low key event than other Elite competitions, is a key component in the US Gymnastics calendar, allowing unknown Gymnasts to rise from obscurity and become US and World Gymnastics stars. So, with Gymnasts like Simone Biles and Jazmyn Foberg on the list, 2015 Junior Champion, Colbi Flory of Texas Dreams is certainly in good company and is bound to make an impact on the US and World Gymnastics scene in the future.