By now you will be familiar with the story of Brenna Dowell at the Worlds Championships. Dowell was chosen as part of the four woman selection to represent the USA at the World Championships in Antwerp. Only days away from qualification did US Women’s team Co-Ordinator Marta Karolyi pull her from selection, naming her as reserve to Olympians McKayla Maroney, Kyla Ross and US AA Champion Simone Biles.
Brenna, 3rd AA in the US P&G Championships is an excellent bar worker. Her Coach Al Fong took to his blog to express his disappointment and ponders why Dowell was not given the opportunity to compete:
It’s disappointing to see that Brenna Dowell is the odd man out at the World Championships. Under Marta Karolyi’s questionable criteria for selecting the best three athletes to compete in each event, unfortunately Brenna didn’t make the line up in any event—–in spite of the fact she has one of the best bar routines in the world at this time. There were 10 days of training left before the actual competition with plenty of time to fine tune and “peak” to the max. But a line up sheet had to be turned in to the meet organizer at a certain date, and in the new training gym environment Brenna didn’t meet Marta’s criteria soon enough on vault—– the event she wasn’t going to compete in anyway because she only had one vault.The training gym in Amsterdam is a nice one but has a very short landing area where a powerful vaulter would land only a couple of feet short of hitting a solid wall. Plus the mat placed in front of the board kept slipping every time Brenna hit it with her arm block. Brenna needed a little more time to adjust to these challenges. But time ran out.Maybe in the eyes of the decision makers she doesn’t have the international experience or Olympic achievement to show a track record of successful performance under any condition.For sure, they don’t know Brenna like Armine and I do, and she does have the stuff to make things happen under pressure when it counts. But the fact remains…..it’s all about hitting when you need to. And in this situation, she didn’t get it done in time. Hard for me to argue that fact.
He posts this routine from training in the arena: