Bridget Sloan will be just one of the fascinating stories to follow at this weekend’s U.S. Classic.
We can’t tell much from this last sequence on bars other than the fact that Bridget still has her excellent line and beautifully stretched double layout. A 15 on bars this weekend could sure put her right in the mix – at least in the hunt for an alternate spot, if anything. But it will probably need to be a 15…14’s just aren’t going to get the job done at this point.
This beam sequence was fantastic! A front aerial connected to a back handspring to stretched layout – a highly rated E-skill and one we’ve never seen Bridget do. Bridget has had plenty of problems with consistency on beam in the past, but that sure looked solid. If she can do a routine this weekend that looks as confident as that, she could certainly turn some heads. But confidence will be the biggest question mark for Sloan, who has competed little more than a couple of rare bar routines since winning the world all-around title in 2009.
With all the hype on Nastia Liukin, Shawn Johnson, and even Alicia Sacramone over the last couple of years, former world all-around champions Bridget Sloan and Chellsie Memmel have been flying under the radar. The statuses of these two are quite mysterious at this point, but remember that BOTH of these gymnasts have been known to pull off surprises. Sloan shocked many fans by making the 2008 Olympic team and then shocked the entire world by winning the 2009 world all-around title. After appearing to be out of the American mix due to injuries the following year, she again made a last-minute run for the 2010 world championship team. Sloan not only helped the U.S. team win the silver medal in Rotterdam, but she also made the uneven bars finals – something very few Americans are capable of right now. She’s not considered a front runner for London at this point, but let’s not forget her experience and track record. She knows how to get the job done. A lot of questions will be answered this weekend, but it wouldn’t shock me if we start mentioning Bridget Sloan’s name a whole lot more in the very near future.
So keep your eyes on more than just Nastia Liukin this weekend – there’s a couple other former Olympians who are looking to sneak right back into the mix.