Great Britain’s Max Whitlock has claimed his country’s first gold medal in gymnastics, beating two Brazilians in the men’s floor exercise final in Rio on Sunday.
Whitlock, 23, posted a 15.633 to edge Diego Hypolito (15.533) and Arthur Mariano (15.433), as Brazil took silver and bronze.
Japan’s Kohei Uchimura finished fifth.
Another disappointing session for men’s gymnastics saw Americans finish at or near the bottom of the pack.
Sam Mikulak finished eighth of eight and Jacob Dalton ended his day sixth.
The Brazilian men’s gymnastics team was understandably excited when they learned they qualified for the World Championships team final, and with it the Rio Olympics, on Monday.
Their joyous celebration, shirtless jumping on (presumably hotel) beds and screaming, was posted on team member Arthur Nory Mariano‘s Instagram account.
Brazil’s men tallied a decent score on the first day of qualifying Sunday but had to wait until Monday to see if it would crack the top eight to make Wednesday’s final and August’s Olympics. They finished seventh in qualifying when everybody had finished.
Brazil, as host nation, was already guaranteed some Rio Olympic gymnastics berths, but not a whole five-man team. It had never qualified a men’s team to the Olympics, though the women made the last three Games.
If the men had not finished in the top eight in qualifying at Worlds, they would have advanced to an Olympic test event in Rio in April. There, the top four nations (not already qualified for Rio) advance to the Olympics. Brazil would have been favored to lock up an Olympic berth there if it had not done so at Worlds.
The Brazilian women were ninth in Worlds qualifying, so they will have to compete at the test event in a bid to qualify a full team for Rio 2016.
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