STUTTGART, GERMANY — It didn’t end with the medal he might have wanted, but Sam Mikulak found a silver — or rather titanium — lining in the men’s all-around competition Friday at the World Gymnastics Championships in Stuttgart.
An unintentional dismount off the pommel horse during the most difficult skill in his routine likely cost the six-time U.S. Champion a spot on the podium at his fifth Worlds, as Sam settled for a respectable seventh place with 85.691 points, including the highest score of the night on high bar and the second best on parallel bars.
“I felt so comfortable out there; the crowd was so energizing. It made me believe in myself. I had such confidence,” said Mikulak.
Through four events, he was nearly perfect. Sam’s vault, parallel bars and high bar sets were among the best of his career, so good he led the field halfway through the competition. It was a complete reversal from his qualification round, where numerous falls meant that he got the very last spot available into the final.
But Mikulak kept the smile on his face and reaped an unlooked-for reward as a result. The Longines Prize for Elegance, sponsored by the Swiss watchmaker and selected by a jury that includes International Gymnastics Federation President Morinari Watanabe, is bestowed upon the male and female gymnasts who display the most personal “elegance” on and off the competition floor. (via USA Gymnastics)
We’re proud of you, Sam. We look forward to what’s ahead for you, including the 2020 Olympic Games!