Belgium’s female gymnasts took the lead at the Artistic Gymnastics World Championship in Stuttgart after the first two events on Friday.
The Belgian team, made up of Senna Deriks (Gymgroep AS), Jade Vansteenkiste (Gym Izegem), Nina Derwael (TK Sta Paraat-P.H.H. Hasselt vzw), Maellyse Brassart (Gym Passion Herseaux) and Margaux Daveloose (Turnclub Varsenare) scored a total of 161.238 points.
The three remaining exercises for the day will be run in the afternoon, while the last six events are on Saturday.
These exercises are qualifiers for the finals (teams, all round and bars) and also provide the successful gymnasts with a path to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
To book their places, the Belgians will have to be in the top 12 by 10 p.m. on Saturday. For this they will need to figure among the nine best teams at this weekend’s games since the United States, Russia and China have already qualified. This should be well within the Belgian team’s grasp, since it placed 11th with 158.970 points in Doha last year.
At the individual level, Nina Derwael is defending her title on the asymmetrical bars, where she has a score of 15.141 points. She is also the all-round leader with 55.441 points, while the second Belgian, Maellyse Brassart, is on 51.232 points.