By Patricia Duffy

On Friday, USA Gymnastics released a document clarifying the U.S. Women’s Gymnastics Program’s official qualification procedures for the 2020 Olympics, specifically explaining how athletes can qualify as individuals via the Individual Apparatus World Cup Series from 2018-2020.

Feature Photo by Grace Chiu


On Friday, USA Gymnastics released the official document explaining the U.S. Women’s Program’s qualification procedures for the 2020 Olympics. Read the full procedure notification below:

“In our continued effort of cultural change and commitment to athlete safety and well-being the U.S. Women’s Gymnastics Program would like to field the strongest possible team for the 2020 Olympic Games, and to maximize the total number of gymnasts who can qualify to participate [qualifying a maximum of two additional athletes who cannot compete as part of the Olympic team].

Restrictions on athletes who compete in the 2018 World Championships

Any athlete who competes actively (receives a score) in the 2018 World Championships will not be eligible to qualify as an individual to the 2020 Olympic Games under Criteria 5 of the 2020 Olympic qualification rules.

Women’s Program Qualification Procedures for an athlete to participate in the Individual Apparatus World Cup Series (2018 / 2019 and 2019 / 2020 Series)

In accordance with Sections I-III below, the U.S. Women’s program will provide qualified U.S. national team athletes the opportunity to compete in the Individual Apparatus World Cup Series to achieve a named quota place for the 2020 Olympic Games according to Criteria 5 of the Olympic Qualifications document.

I. Assignments to Individual Apparatus World Cup Events

The Athlete Selection Committee will assign up to two (2) athletes per event to compete in Individual Apparatus World Cup events taking place in 2018, 2019 and 2020 as determined by the official qualification procedures. In case more than two athletes meet the criteria, the athletes’ World event ranking will be used to determine the top two. Athletes must meet a minimum of one of the criteria listed below to compete in the Individual Apparatus World Cup events:

  1. Must be a current national team member who has earned a World or Olympic medal on an individual event in 2016, 2017, 2018 or 2019.
  2. Must be a current national team member who has placed first on an individual event at the US Championships Day 1 competition in 2018 or 2019.
  3. Must be a current national team member who has won an individual event at a FIG competition in 2019.

II. Requirements to Continue Participation in the Individual Apparatus World Cup Series

An athlete who places in the top two (2) on an apparatus at an Individual Apparatus World Cup competition in 2018, 2019 or 2020 is eligible to continue competing in future Individual Apparatus World Cup meets in an effort to earn a quota place according to Criteria 5. If an athlete does not finish in the top two (2) on an apparatus in an Individual Apparatus World Cup event, she may not be eligible to compete in future Individual Apparatus World Cup meets as determined by the Athlete Selection Committee.

III. Number of Individual Apparatus World Cup Events Funded by USA Gymnastics

USA Gymnastics will fund an athlete who has qualified to participate (under section I) in the Individual Apparatus World Cup series in a maximum of three (3) World Cup events so long as the athlete meets the continued participation requirements listed in section II.

According to the rules detailed in the FIG Qualification Document (Criteria 5), an athlete who is ranked number one on an individual event at the conclusion of the 2020 Individual Apparatus World Cup series, has qualified to participate in the Olympic Games.

No replacement of this athlete is possible except as outlined in the FIG Qualification Document, and there is no possibility to submit a petition for this position. Note, there is a tie breaking procedure in the event that athletes are tied for the number one rank at the end of the series.

Women’s Program Qualification Procedures for an athlete to participate in the Individual All Around World Cup Series (2019, 2020)

According to the Olympic Qualification document, the top 12 ranked teams from the 2019 World Championships will qualify to participate in the 2020 All-Around World Cup Series.

The Athlete Selection Committee will determine whether an athlete may participate in the Individual All Around World Cup Series in 2019 and 2020. Athletes will have the chance to qualify for the Individual All Around World Cup Series based on FIG competition rules at select National Team Selection Camps in 2019 and 2020. The Athlete Selection Committee will use a combination of competition rank order and strategic use of athlete strengths to determine, in its sole discretion, the athlete(s) who present the best opportunity for the U.S. to achieve additional quota places to the Olympic Games via Criteria 6 and 7.”

USAG’s releasing of this procedure clarifies what many speculated about in regard to who will be allowed to/selected to attend the Individual Apparatus World Cups.

In the case of Jade Carey–who opted to not pursue a spot on the 2018 Worlds Team in favor of the AWC route–this document confirms that Carey is eligible to attend and try to earn an individual Olympic spot for herself since she won a World medal on floor and vault at the 2017 World Championships.

Carey is technically the only athlete eligible to pursue the AWC berth at the moment.


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