Prudential Center is the place to be for gymnastics March 4-5, 2016, to see both rising young men and women and many of the world’s best gymnasts compete. The 2016 Elite Team Cup is scheduled for 6 p.m. on March 5 at Prudential Center in Newark, N.J., joining the weekend’s high profile slate of the Nastia Liukin Cup on March 4 at 7 p.m. and the AT&T American Cup on March 5 at 11:30 a.m.
“The men’s Elite Team Cup is a great opportunity to showcase future stars and top senior gymnasts together,” said Steve Penny, president of USA Gymnastics. “This new event gives these junior elite male gymnasts the chance to compete on the same team with the country’s highest-ranked men, who have their sights set on the 2016 Olympic Games. Holding the Elite Team Cup and the Nastia Liukin Cup with the prestigious AT&T American Cup gives fans a look at today’s best gymnasts, along with the champions of tomorrow, and provides those up-and-coming gymnasts an incredible experience.”
The Elite Team Cup will feature nine men’s Regional Teams, each consisting of six junior elite gymnasts and one senior elite athlete. Team scores for the Elite Team Cup will be based on five athletes competing on each event with the top four scores on each event counting. In addition, there is prize money for the results in the Senior Elite All-Around (all six events counting). Finally, results will be kept for the junior-athlete-only Regional Elite Team results – based on the top three junior elite scores on each event - that will serve as the basis for the 2017 draft.
The senior men are vying for total of $6,000, which will be distributed to the top six finishers in the senior all-around standings: 1. $2,000; 2. $1,500; 3. $1,000; 4. $600; 5. $500; and 6. $400.
The nine senior gymnasts will be invited to compete based on the all-around results at the 2016 Winter Cup Challenge, Feb. 18-20, in Las Vegas, Nev. The senior gymnasts will be aligned with a regional squad via a draft. The lowest-ranked region based on the 2015 Elite Team results will have the first pick and continue in reverse-rank order. Each region’s chairman will represent his region in the conference call draft.
The junior elite gymnasts must be between 13-18 years of age as of Sept. 1, 2015, and will be selected from the Regional Elite Team Program. The Junior Elite gymnasts will follow the USA Gymnastics Level 10 Age Group Competition Program rules, with the senior gymnasts competing under the International Gymnastics Federation rules.
Tickets for the men’s Elite Team Cup will be available in the near future.
2015 World team gold-medalists Gabrielle Douglas of Virginia Beach, Va./Buckeye Gymnastics, who is also the reigning Olympic all-around champion, and Maggie Nichols of Little Canada, Minn./Twin City Twisters; three-time U.S. all-around champion and 2012 Olympian Sam Mikulak of Newport Beach, Calif./Team Hilton (U.S. Olympic Training Center); and two-time World medalist Donnell Whittenburg of Baltimore, Md./Team Hilton (U.S. Olympic Training Center), have accepted invitations to represent the United States at the 2016 AT&T American Cup at Prudential Center at 11:30 a.m. on March 5.
Tickets for the AT&T American Cup, the USA’s most prestigious international invitational and part of the International Gymnastics Federation’s all-around World Cup series, range in price from $35-$250. The platinum ($250) ticket also includes a reserved seat for the Nastia Liukin Cup. Tickets may be purchased through ticketmaster.com, by phone at 800-745-3000, at all Ticketmaster outlets, as well as at Prudential Center’s box office. For group sales (10+ people) information, please call Prudential Center’s Group Sales department at 973-757-6250. Discounted tickets are also available through local gym clubs that participate in the Club Ticket Sales Program. For additional information, please go to attamericancup.com.
Held annually in conjunction with the AT&T American Cup, the Nastia Liukin Cup is named after Nastia Liukin, the 2008 Olympic all-around champion who has five Olympic and nine World medals to her credit. The annual event features 36 gymnasts who qualify through the Nastia Liukin Cup Series, which includes many of the country’s top invitationals held throughout January and February. The Nastia Liukin Cup made its debut in 2010 in Worcester and returned in 2013. Other sites for the Nastia Liukin Cup are Jacksonville, Fla. (2011), New York City (2012), Greensboro (2014) and Arlington, Texas (2015). Tickets will go on sale in the near future.
Prudential Center is a world-class sports and entertainment venue located in downtown Newark, New Jersey. Opened in October 2007, the state-of-the-art arena is the home of the National Hockey League’s (NHL) three-time Stanley Cup Champion New Jersey Devils, Seton Hall University’s NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball program, and more than 175 concerts, family shows and special events each year. Ranked in the Top 10 nationally by Pollstar, Billboard and Venues Today, Prudential Center is recognized as one of the premier venues in the United States, and welcomes 1.75 million guests annually. For more information about Prudential Center, visit PruCenter.com and Facebook, and follow @PruCenter on Twitter.
Based in Indianapolis, USA Gymnastics is the national governing body for gymnastics in the United States. Its mission is to encourage participation and the pursuit of excellence in the sport. Its disciplines include men’s and women’s artistic gymnastics, rhythmic gymnastics, trampoline and tumbling, acrobatic gymnastics and group gymnastics. For more complete information, log on to www.usagym.org.