excited about her potential for next year. Switching to Texas Dreams is the best decision of her career thus far. Watch out for this tiny one! She could be put up on floor, and her bars are improving every time we see her.
Alexis Vasquez is relatively knew to the elite scene and is a brand new senior. The reigning Junior National Beam Champion is currently showing some new bar work, including a lot of places for potential connections. While her bars is still not her strongest event, she is definitely putting in some work on this event. Her beam is looking solid, although we are not shown much on this event. If she made the world team this year, it would be because of her exquisite beam work. She also shows a tight triple twist, which needs a little more height and rotation, but her form is very nice. It will be hard for her to break into the top contenders this year, but her form and her beam work will definitely make her one to watch.
In our first look at Emily Gaskins since her gym change from Cincinnati Gymnastics to her old gym Intensity Gymnastics, Emily looked sharp. Her bar work looked clean, and she has beautiful lines! She shows a very line double layout, that was a little piked, but she has time to fix that. Her new beam mount is quite possibly my favorite piece of gymnastics ever. She does a press handstand to a planche with one foot on her shoulder, then lies face down on the beam to a chest roll, extends her arms, does a back kick over, back handspring step out layout step out. How perfect is that? She has such beautiful lines that it looks exquisite. If I could only ever watch one piece of gymnastics for the rest of my life, it would be this. Her floor, like in the past, has slightly lower difficulty, but she shows a stuck 1.5 through to a double tuck. Gaskins could definitely be one to watch next year for her beam work, a spot that already has some serious contenders. It will be hard for her to break into the top contenders next year, but I see her killing it in the next quadrennium.
Many fans were excited to see Key, the 2013 Junior National Champion back in the gym after a shoulder injury kept her from competition this summer. She looks good and poised to fight for her first World Team! Her double twisting Yurchenko looks good, albeit slight leg crossing during the second twist. Bars is where Key shows some HUGE upgrades, such as a BEAUTIFUL toe on- blind half- Jaeger. My favorite bar upgrade she shows is a great Shang (Inbar stalder- piked Tchatchev). Her marathon bar set will score nicely internationally, which also includes a Downie into a Pac. She also shows intricate low to high to low to high pirouette combinations, which is already being executed wonderfully. On beam, she shows us a nice standing arabian, along with a nice back handspring step out, back handspring, layout. We also get a glimpse of a new double pike, which she lands a little low. On floor, we see a nice, not quite there yet double layout, as well as a piked double Arabian, which will add quite a bit of start value. Overall, things are looking great for Ms. Key. She is in great shape for a senior debut in Jesolo, as well as looking ready for Worlds this year. I expect Bailie to give Simone Biles a fight at Nationals!
One of Chow's many challengers, Norah Flatley is looking strong. The biggest upgrade here is a brand new Double Twisting Yurchenko, a vault in which she needs to competitive as an All Arounder next year. While it is not perfect, it is definitely an improvement. Her bar work is so intricate and clean, and she shows a possible PIKED ENDO! I absolutely love endos and think they look so cool, so I was so excited to see this! Her bar work is very WOGA-esque, and it is so beautiful! Beam is solid as always. We get to see her signature flexibility and her huge back handspring step out, back handspring, layout pass. She gets so much air it's unreal. Another change from last year is an aerial walkover sheep jump, which was gorgeous. Norah is another gymnast who looks so fluid and natural on beam, she is a perfect example of what beam should look like. I think being born in 2000 definitely hurts Norah's chances for next year, as I think this year's World's would be the perfect place for Marta to throw her into competition, and with a 5 person team I think it will be hard for her break into the team.