A number of leading names are headed to the French city of Montpellier this week for the European Artistic Gymnastics Individual Championships.
The tournament, due to get underway at the Park&Suites Arena tomorrow, will welcome men’s competitors from 38 nations and women’s athletes from 33.
Among them will be 2013 men’s all-around European champion David Belyavskiy of Russia and Great Britain’s World Championships all-around silver medallist Max Whitlock.
However, they will have to watch out for Azerbaijani Oleg Stepko, who posted the highest all-around score in the lead up to this week’s event, with a 90.600 at the Baku 2015 European Games test event at the beginning of March and Ukraine’s American Cup champion Oleg Verniaiev, a strong contender on parallel bars where he is the defending European and world champion.
Elsewhere, the absence of injured Olympic and world pommel horse champion Krisztián Berki of Hungary opens the way for London 2012 silver medallist Louis Smith and bronze medallist Whitlock.
Meanwhile, the women’s competition is slightly more open with last year’s European balance beam champion Maria Kharenkova of Russia and Italian American Cup bronze medallist Erika Fasana being strong contenders for the all-around gold medal.
Others to look out for are British champion Amy Tinkler, Romanian Diana Bulimar, Eythora Thorsdottir of The Netherlands and Swiss defending vault champion Giulia Steingruber, who will also be looking to medal on the floor.
Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games champion Becky Downie of Britain will look to retain her uneven bars European title in France, but will have to fend off the challenge of Russian world bronze medallist Daria Spiridonova and Sweden’s Jonna Adlerteg.
The Championships are scheduled to continue through to Sunday (April 19).
Watch live action from the finals here.