Rebeca Andrade wins gymnastics worlds all-around, completes grueling climb to the top

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Rebeca Andrade is the first all-around gold medalist for Brazil and South America, crowned the top female gymnast at the world championships in Liverpool, England, on Thursday.

Andrade, the 23-year-old favorite, won with 56.899 points, distancing the silver medalist, American Shilese Jones, by 1.5 points. Jones was 10th at last year’s Olympic Trials and was ready to quit elite gymnastics. Now she’s the world’s second-best gymnast.

Jessica Gadirova earned bronze for Great Britain’s first world women’s all-around medal. Last year, Gadirova had Great Britain’s best Olympic women’s all-around finish in history — 10th.

Jade Carey, the other American in the final, was sixth, two places better than her result in Tokyo.

Andrade, the Olympic all-around silver medalist, had the highest score in qualifying by 1.566 points. With scores reset Thursday, she had no falls, though she had errors on uneven bars and the balance beam.

GYMNASTICS WORLDS: Broadcast Schedule | Results

Andrade completed Brazil’s rise since 2000 from non-existent in medal-level gymnastics to the top of the sport. Brazil had no active Olympic gymnasts when Andrade was born in 1999, one of eight siblings raised by her mom, a house cleaner.

Brazil’s emergence began with Daniele Hypolito, who won the nation’s first world championships medal in 2001 (floor silver). Daiane dos Santos, the 4-foot-9 firecracker, followed with gold on floor at the 2003 Worlds (and later appeared before Steve Prefontaine in a Nike commercial). In 2007, Jade Barbosa landed bronze in the world championships all-around. In 2012, Arthur Zanetti won Olympic still rings gold.

Andrade won Brazil’s second Olympic title in Tokyo, doing so on vault three days after taking silver in the all-around behind American Suni Lee. Andrade would have been Olympic all-around champion if not for landing out of bounds twice on her closing floor routine.

Andrade’s growing medal collection is the product of perseverance. Three separate right ACL tears ruled her out of the world championships in 2015, 2017 and 2019.

“I have had a lot of moments, not just in my sporting life but in my personal life too: my injuries, the things I needed to do to be here now,” she said, according to the International Gymnastics Federation. “There have been a lot of things that have helped me make adjustments when I need to. I don’t feel pressure doing gymnastics, because that’s my job.”

Andrade, who has four million followers between Instagram and TikTok, is the oldest woman to win a world all-around title since Russian Svetlana Khorkina in 2003. Khorkina’s back-to-back titles in 2001 and 2003 marked the last time the U.S. went consecutive worlds without winning the women’s all-around until now.

The U.S. won every Olympic and world all-around title from 2011 through the Tokyo Games, with Simone Biles taking six of those. Biles and Lee are on indefinite, perhaps permanent breaks from elite gymnastics.

Angelina Melnikova, who won last October’s world title with Biles, Lee and Andrade not in the field, missed these worlds due to the ban on Russian gymnasts for the war in Ukraine.

China’s Tang Xijing, the 2019 World silver medalist, withdrew before the start of Thursday’s final after struggling in Tuesday’s team final.

Konnor McClain, who won the U.S. all-around title in August, missed worlds due to a back injury.

That made Jones the top American all-arounder, one year after she was 10th at Olympic Trials. The top nine went to Tokyo — five on the team, four as alternates — and Jones was ready to end her elite gymnastics career and matriculate at the University of Florida.

After conversations with loved ones, notably her father, Jones changed her mind. She deferred enrollment until 2024 because she had designs on the Paris Games.

“I knew that wasn’t the ending,” Jones said Thursday. “I knew I was capable of more.”

In December, Jones’ father, Sylvester, died after a long kidney disease battle. In a GoFundMe to help with funeral and travel expenses, Jones wrote that it was her dad’s “dream to see me on the Olympic stage one day and he devoted anything and everything to my gymnastics. Beat tired after a long day of dialysis to drive and pick me up from practices. There was nothing he wouldn’t do to support my gymnastics.”

Worlds continue Friday with the men’s all-around final, live on Peacock at 2:05 p.m. ET.

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2022 Grand Prix Final figure skating TV, live stream schedule

Ilia Malinin
Getty
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The Grand Prix Final, the most exclusive figure skating competition of the season and a preview of March’s world championships, airs live on Peacock and E! this week.

The top six per discipline from the six-event fall Grand Prix Series gather in Turin, Italy, at the Palavela, the 2006 Olympic venue. It’s the first Grand Prix Final in three years after the 2020 and 2021 events were canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The U.S. qualified skaters in all four disciplines for the first time since 2007, led by the world’s top-ranked man. Ilia Malinin, who turned 18 last Friday, has been the story of the season, becoming the first skater to land a quadruple Axel in competition.

Malinin, the reigning world junior champion, won both of his Grand Prix starts and posted the best total score among all fall events, edging world champion Shoma Uno of Japan. Malinin and Uno will go head-to-head for the first time this season at the Final.

Isabeau Levito, a 15-year-old world junior champion, is the youngest American at a Final since Caroline Zhang in 2007. She qualified in fifth place. The favorites are Japan’s Mai Mihara and Kaori Sakamoto and Belgian Loena Hendrickx.

The U.S. also qualified two pairs’ teams — world champions Alexa Knierim and Brandon Frazier and Emily Chan and Spencer Howe — and two ice dance couples — three-time world medalists Madison Chock and Evan Bates and Kaitlin Hawayek and Jean-Luc Baker.

For the first time, the Final has no Russian skaters. They are banned from international competition due to the war in Ukraine. For the first time in 25 years, there are no Chinese skaters. China’s top pairs’ teams did not compete in the fall Grand Prix Series.

Grand Prix Final Broadcast Schedule
All TV coverage also streams on NBCSports.com/live and the NBC Sports app for subscribers.

Day Event Time (ET) Platform
Thursday Pairs’ Short Program 1:20-2:15 p.m. Peacock
Men’s Short Program 2:35-3:20 p.m. Peacock
Friday Pairs’ Free Skate 11:35 a.m.-12:40 p.m. Peacock
Rhythm Dance 1:50-2:45 p.m. Peacock
Women’s Short Program 3:05-3:50 p.m. Peacock
Saturday Men’s Short Program* 6:30-7:30 a.m. E!
Men’s Free Skate 7:30-8:30 a.m. E!, Peacock
Women’s Short Program* 8:30-9:30 a.m. E!
Free Dance 1:40-2:40 p.m. Peacock
Women’s Free Skate 3-3:55 p.m. Peacock
Sunday Highlights* 4-6 p.m. NBC

*Delayed broadcast.

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Aleksander Aamodt Kilde sweeps Beaver Creek World Cup races

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Norway’s Aleksander Aamodt Kilde held off Swiss Marco Odermatt for a second consecutive day to sweep World Cup races in Beaver Creek, Colorado, this weekend.

Kilde won Sunday’s super-G by two tenths of a second over Odermatt, one day after edging Odermatt by six hundredths. France’s Alexis Pinturault took third as the podium was made up of the last three men to win the World Cup overall title, the biggest annual prize in ski racing.

This season’s overall figures to be a two-man battle between Kilde, the 2019-20 champion, and Odermatt, the reigning champion, and could come down to March’s World Cup Finals. They’ve combined to win the first five of 38 scheduled races.

The top American Sunday was River Radamus, who finished an impressive 16th given his start number was 57. Radamus’ best event is the giant slalom.

Ryan Cochran-Siegle, the Olympic super-G silver medalist, and Travis Ganong, who was third in Beaver Creek last year, both skied out.

The men’s World Cup heads next weekend to Val d’Isere, France, for a giant slalom and slalom.

ALPINE SKIING: Results | Broadcast Schedule

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