Rebeca Andrade leads after first day of Brazilian gymnastics championships

The world and Olympic vault champion is competing on all four apparatus for the first time in 2022

By Scott Bregman
Picture by Buda Mendes

Rebeca Andrade competed all four events for the first time in 2022 Thursday (11 August) and leads the standings after the first of two days of competition at the Brazilian gymnastics championships in Bahia, Brazil.

Across the four events, Andrade earned a total score of 56.734, ahead of Flavia Saraiva, who scored 54.900. Julia Soares is third with a 52.200 total.

Having had three ACL tears in her knee over the course of her career, Andrade has been cautious in recent seasons about how often she competes on the floor exercise. Her routine on the event Thursday was her first of the year in competition and contained a watered-down opening tumbling pass. She scored 13.800 for the routine.

“[My coach Francisco Porath] understands very much that I am not the same athlete as when I was 15 years old. He understands that my body has changed a lot during that time, with all the injuries and everything,” said Andrade told earlier this year about how she manages her workload at age 23. “If I come to a day when I'm not well inside the gym and say, 'Chico, I'm not feeling well today.' We can keep that vault for another day. I can do the floor routine another day, and he can understand that, and he knows that it's not laziness, that it's not fear, that it's really that I'm not feeling my body.”

Saraiva tumbled a whip to full-twisting double back, a double back, a one-and-a-half twist to front full and a double pike for a 13.900 on floor to narrowly lead Andrade, whose routine scored 13.800, after one event.

In the second rotation, Andrade grabbed the lead, earning a 14.467 for her double-twisting Yurchenko vault. Saraiva scored 13.933 for the same element. After two apparatus, Andrade had a 0.434 lead over her Olympic teammate.

As the top two moved to the uneven bars, Andrade extended her lead, besting Saraiva on the event 14.600 to 13.633. That opened up a 1.367 lead for two-time Olympic medallist going into the final event.

Andrade closed out her first day of competition with 13.867 on the beam. She executed a routine in which she appeared slightly nervous, incurring balance errors on several elements including her switch ring leap and side aerial. She dismounted with just a layout salto.

After opening with a strong round-off, back handspring, split leap, swing down mount sequence, Saraiva came off the beam on her round-off, layout acrobatic series and scored 13.400 on the event where she is an Olympic finalist.

The competition concludes on Saturday (13 August) with the second day of senior women's all-around competition.


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