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2018 podium- 1. Dominick Cunningham, 2. Artem Dolgopyat, 3. Artur Dalaloyan
We have all of last year’s podium competing here, including 2018 World floor Champion Artur Dalaloyan, who has a few potential upgrades up his sleeve. His Russian teammates will post a threat to him making the final though, with Nikita Nagornyy and Dmitry Lankin having two of the most difficult routines in Europe, and Ivan Stretovich having less difficulty, but super clean form and control. The favourite for the title however is probably Artem Dolgopyat, who has shown a fantastic combination of difficulty and consistency so far this year at World Cups. Of course defending champion Dominick Cunningham isn’t going to give up the title without a fight, and we also have 7x European floor medalist Alexander Shatilov looking like he could make a big push for medal #8. The other big name contender for a medal here is Rayderly Zapata, who is a World floor medalist from 2015, but has yet to break into the medals at Euros.
Gymnasts who aren’t quite as up there in the fight for the medals but could well make their way into finals are Ahmet Onder, Jonathon Vrolix, Casimir Schmidt, Marcel Nguyen, Nicola Bartolini, and my personal favourite who I’m hoping to see sneak into the final despite lower difficulty is Emil Soravuo, who has made a few World Cup finals and has one of the most beautiful and stylish floor routines in revent memory.
2018 Podium- 1. Rhys McCleneghan, 2. Robert Seligman and Saso Bertoncelj
With the defending champion out recovering from shoulder surgery, and a couple other big names also not competing, the heavy favourite for the title has to be Olympic Champion Max Whitlock. If he goes clean, no one else in Europe can get close to his level of scoring potential. The other medals are very up in the air though, and the field is very deep with guys who could push for the other top spots, including defending silver medalists Robert Seligman and Saso Bertoncelj, 2016 Champion Harutyan Merdinyan, and World medalists Cyril Tommasone and Filip Ude. Excitingly, 2015 finalist Matvei Petrov is making his comeback here, now competing for Albania, and has the potential to push for the final, which would be awesome to see.
Other gymnasts who have the potential to make it into the final include Oleg Vernieiev (although he had surgery 2 months ago so who knows what to expect), Oliver Hegi, Petro Pakhnyuk, Nikita Nagornyy and Vladislav Polyashov.
2018 Podium- 1. Eleftherios Petrounias, 2. Ibrahim Colak, 3. Courtney Tulloch
The last time someone other than Eleftherios Petrounias won a major rings title was 2014. With him out recovering from shoulder surgery, the field is wide open and there’s no clear favourites. Courtney Tulloch currently has the highest rings difficulty in the World and with one of his best routines this advantage could help him snatch the title. But between him, defending silver medalist Ibrahim Colak, Olympic finalists Igor Radivilov and Dennis Goossens, and World finalists Vahagn Davtyan, Artur Tovmasyan, Samir Ait Said, and Nikita Simonov, it’s not going to be easy. Gymnasts who have the potential to make a big impact but who aren’t at full strength right now are 2018 World medalist Marco Lodadio, and 2014 Champion Denis Ablyazin.
There’s a few gymnasts with the scoring potential to sneak into the final despite not being top rings specialists, notably Russians Nikita Nagornyy, Dmitry Lankin or Artur Dalaloyan, but also Marcel Nguyen and Vinzenz Hoeck.
2018 Podium- 1. Artur Dalaloyan, 2. Igor Radivilov, 3. Dmitry Lankin.
Here’s a fun fact- there are 40 men listed to compete 2 vaults in quals. 4 of them are Russian, and all 4 of them are European vault medalists, and 3 are former champions. Defending Champion Artur Dalaloyan will be hoping to make it a 3-peat, but will have to fight off teammates Nikita Nagornyy (2015 Champ), Denis Ablyazin (2013 and 2014 Champ, although he’s not at full strength right now), and defending bronze medalist Dmitry Lankin. Meanwhile, Igor Radivilov has been looking really excellent on the World Cup circuit, and will probably be the favourite here to finally grab the title that’s been eluding him, while Dominick Cunningham, Loris Frasca, Andrey Medvedev and Artur Davtyan are all big names with the scoring potential to push themselves into the medals.
Other names to look out for who have the potential to push for the final are Courtney Tulloch, Ahmet Onder, Benjamin Gischard, Yahor Sharamkou and Valgard Reinhardsson.
2018 Podium- 1. Artur Dalaloyan, 2. David Belyavskiy, 3. Oliver Hegi
Defending champion Artur Dalaloyan is the only one of last years medalists competing pbars this year, and is probably the favourite for a repeat title, however Russia dominates this event on a European level and any of his teammates Nikita Nagornyy, Dmitry Lankin or Vladislav Polyashov, have the scoring potential to go 15+ to win a medal, with Vladislav actually having the joint highest difficulty in Europe. Making the final for these 4 guys is going to be a huge battle thanks to the 2 per country rule, and whichever 2 make it will probably be favourites to go 1-2. There’s several guys who could ruin this Russian domination though, including 2017 silver medalist Lukas Dauser, or previous finalists Ferhat Arican (who matches Vladislav’s highest difficulty in Europe), Ahmet Onder and Petro Pakhnyuk. Oh, and there’s the small matter of reigning Olympic Champion Oleg Verniaiev, who is a giant questionmark right now due to his recent surgery, but could pull off the win if he looks enough like himself.
Other potential finalists to watch out for are Marcel Nguyen, Eddy Yusof, Christian Baumann, Joe Fraser, Brinn Bevan, Marios Georgiou, Nils Dunkel, and maybe even Andrei Likhovitsky, who is lacking difficulty but has been getting recent great results on the World Cup circuit thanks to his gorgeous form and execution.
2018 Podium- 1.Oliver Hegi, 2. Epke Zonderland, 3. David Vecsernyes
Defending Champion Oliver Hegi is somewhat of a questionmark for this event- he is on the start list to compete but nearly withdrew from HB due to injury, so fingers crossed it all goes well for him. But even if not, don’t fear because we have the last 2 World Champions ready to battle it out- Epke Zonderland and Tin Srbic. You can probably expect the title to be a battle between these two, with Epke having the slight advantage due to his huge difficulty potential. Defending bronze medalist David Vecsernyes will be in the hunt for another medal, as well as the guys who tied with him in 2018 but lost out due to tiebreaking procedures- Taha Serhani and James Hall. Very excitingly we also have the 2018 Junior European Champion Nicolo Mozzato, who has the scoring potential to make an impact on this event at the senior level already, while on the opposite end of the spectrum 36 year old Polish high bar legend Roman Kulesza is competing at a major competition for the first time since 2015. Also in the hunt for medals will be 2018 finalist Joe Fraser, and of course Russians Nikita Nagornyy, Artur Dalaloyan and Ivan Stretovich.