Japan’s Sasada will compete at the 2015 AT&T American Cup
INDIANAPOLIS, Jan. 19, 2015 – Japan’s Natsumi Sasada will compete at the 2015 AT&T American Cup, scheduled for March 7 at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. Sasada replaces Great Britain’s Ruby Harrold, who has withdrawn from the competition to protect a minor injury. Featuring the world’s best gymnasts in a one-day all-around competition, the AT&T American Cup is the USA’s most prestigious international invitational and part of the International Gymnastics Federation’s all-around World Cup Series.
The U.S. athletes scheduled to compete in Arlington are two-time World all-around champion Simone Biles of Spring, Texas/World Champions Centre; 2014 AT&T American Cup champion and World team bronze-medalist Sam Mikulak of Newport Coast, Calif./Team Hilton HHonors (University of Michigan); 2014 World team gold-medalist MyKayla Skinner of Gilbert, Ariz./Desert Lights Gymnastics; and 2014 World team bronze-medalist Donnell Whittenburg of Baltimore, Md./Team Hilton HHonors (U.S. Olympic Training Center).
Sasada was a member of the Japanese teams at the last two World Championships, helping Team Japan to an eighth place finish in 2014. She finished 20th in the all-around at the World Championships last year.
The complete field for the AT&T American Cup is listed below.
Belarus: Andrey Likhovitskiy
Brazil: Arthur Oyakawa Mariano (withdrew)
Colombia: Jossimar Calvo
Germany: Fabian Hambuechen (withdrew)
Great Britain: Daniel Purvis
Japan: Ryohei Kato
Japan: Yusuke Tanaka
Puerto Rico: Alexis Torres
Ukraine: Oleg Verniaiev
USA: Sam Mikulak, Newport Coast, Calif./Team Hilton HHonors (University of Michigan)
USA: Donnell Whittenburg, Baltimore, Md./Team Hilton HHonors (U.S. Olympic Training Center)
Australia: Emily Little
Canada: Elsabeth Black
Great Britain: Claudia Fragapane
Great Britain: Ruby Harrold (withdrew)
Italy: Erika Fasana
Italy: Vanessa Ferrari
Japan: Natsumi Sasada (replaced Ruby Harrold)
USA: Simone Biles, Spring, Texas/World Champions Centre
USA: MyKayla Skinner, Gilbert, Ariz./Desert Lights Gymnastics
Venezuela: Jessica Lopez
Invitations to compete in the AT&T American Cup are based on performances at the 2014 World Gymnastics Championships, held last October in Nanning, China. The AT&T American Cup became an FIG all-around World Cup event in 2011. This year’s AT&T American Cup is the third and final event in the 2014-15 FIG All-around World Cup Series. The two other events in the World Cup Series were the DTB-Pokal World Cup in Stuttgart, Germany, Nov. 29-30, and the Glasgow (Scotland) World Cup, Dec. 6, 2014. The Nastia Liukin Cup, which showcases many of the country’s top Junior Olympic female gymnasts, also will be held at AT&T Stadium on March 6, 2015, in conjunction with the AT&T American Cup.
About the 2015 AT&T American Cup
Tickets for the 2015 AT&T American Cup are on sale and range in price from $35-$250. Tickets may be purchased online through Ticketmaster at ticketmaster.com or by calling (800) 745-3000. For group (10+ people) sales information, please call AT&T Stadium group sales at (817) 892-8688. Discounted tickets are also available through local gym clubs that participate in the Club Ticket Sales Program. For more information, go to attamericancup.com.
2015 marks the first time this iconic event has been held in a football stadium. Several past American Cup champions hail from the Dallas area: 2008 Olympic all-around champion Nastia Liukin, who won the American Cup in 2006 and 2008; 2004 Olympic all-around champion Carly Patterson, who won the American Cup in 2003-04; three-time World champion Kurt Thomas, who won the American Cup in 1978-80; and 1991 World all-around champion and 1992 Olympic bronze-medalist Kim Zmeskal, who won the American Cup in 1990 and 1992.
The 2014 AT&T American Cup champions were Elizabeth Price of Coopersburg, Pa./Parkettes, and Mikulak. In addition to Liukin, Patterson, Thomas and Zmeskal, the impressive list of former American Cup champions also includes Bart Conner, Tim Daggett, Paul Hamm, Jonathan Horton, Shawn Johnson, Danell Leyva, Miller, Mary Lou Retton, Peter Vidmar and Jordyn Wieber. Past sites for the American Cup include: New York City (1976-80, 1982-84, 2004, 2008, 2012); Ft. Worth, Texas (1981, 1996-98); Indianapolis, Ind. (1985); Fairfax, Va. (1986-90, 2003); Orlando, Fla. (1991-94, 2000-02); Seattle, Wash. (1995); St. Petersburg, Fla. (1999); Uniondale, N.Y. (2005); Philadelphia (2006); Jacksonville, Fla. (2007, 2011); Hoffman Estates, Ill. (2009); Worcester, Mass. (2010, 2013); and Greensboro, N.C. (2014).
Held in conjunction with the AT&T American Cup, the Nastia Liukin Cup is named after Liukin, who has five Olympic and nine World medals to her credit. The annual event features gymnasts who qualify through the Nastia Liukin Cup Series, which includes 25 of the country’s top invitationals held in January and February. Past sites for the Nastia Liukin Cup are Worcester, Mass. (2010, 2013), Jacksonville, Fla. (2011), New York City (2012) and Greensboro (2014). Tickets for the Nastia Liukin Cup will go on sale to the public later this month.
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International Gymnastics Federation (FIG). The International Gymnastics Federation is the governing body for gymnastics worldwide. It is the oldest established international sports federation and has participated in the Olympic Games since their revival in 1896. The FIG governs seven disciplines: gymnastics for all, men’s artistic, women’s artistic, rhythmic, trampoline, aerobic and acrobatic. It counts 142 national member federations and boasts a 27-person staff at its international seat in Lausanne, Switzerland, host city of the International Olympic Committee (IOC). For more information, go to www.fig-gymnastics.com.