If we finish among first 12, we can earn Olympic quota, says Turkey’s Ahmet
DOHA: With the FIG World Cup Series being a part of the qualification route to the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games, Turkey’s Ahmet Onder is hoping to earn an Olympic berth at the 12th FIG ART Individual Apparatus World Cup here.
The four-day competition starts at the Aspire Dome on March 20.
“If we finish among first 12, we can earn a quota place for Olympics. Last year at the Doha Worlds, Turkey finished 15th. This means that we’re very close to the first 12. We have to take a step further. I believe we can be among the top 12. I’m sure we’ll go to the Olympics,” said Ahmet, who started gymnastics at the age of eight.
Ahmet scored 14.633 points to finish behind 2015 world champion Hao You on the parallel bars at the Melbourne (AUS) edition of the series last month.
Team-mate Ferhat Arican, another familiar face in Doha, came third with a score of 14.366.
“My goal is not to attend the Olympics, but to win medals there,” said Ahmet. “If I qualify for the 2020 Games, it’ll be a dream-come-true for me. I want to end my career on a high with a medal.”
The Doha leg of the FIG tournament is part of an eight-event qualifying system for the 2020 Olympics, under which the gymnasts will make the cut based on the their top three scores.
The qualification pathway for next year’s Olympics was significantly overhauled and modified from 2016. The men’s and women’s team events in ART gymnastics were reduced from five members per team to four while further allocations were available for up to two specialists.
In a further move to link a number of FIG competitions to the Olympic Games, qualification places are now based on an aggregate of scores achieved over the Artistic Gymnastics World Cup series, and the various continental ART Gymnastics Championship.
This year’s FIG Artistic World Championships, which will also be an Olympic qualification event, will be held in Stuttgart (GER) in October.