ANTWERP -- American gymnasts dominated the final day of competition at the 2013 World Gymnastics Championships, winning another five medals to bring their total medal count to 12.
2013 World all-around champion Simone Biles continued to hit, solidly performing her four challenging tumbling passes (double double tuck, double layout half out, 2.5 twist to front layout and full in tuck) to take the women's floor title over Italy's Vanessa Ferrari and Romania's Larisa Iordache.
Biles also came through on balance beam, overcoming a few wobbles but hitting her extremely difficult full twisting double tuck dismount to win bronze after an inquiry raised her score by 0.1. The inquiry meant Biles edged Ferrari for the bronze, to the displeasure of the Italians, including beam finalist Carlotta Ferlito, who said she felt her teammate Ferrari deserved the bronze.
The beam final belonged to first up Aliya Mustafina of Russia, who has come alive after a sluggish qualification, performed what might have been the most flawless beam routine of her career to become the surprise winner on an event she has been inconsistent on at big meets in the past. Russia has not had a world medalist on beam since 2003.
With the beam title, Mustafina becomes only the fourth woman since 1990 to have won World medals in the all-around and all four events. Only Lilia Podkopayeva of Ukraine, Lavinia Milosovici of Romania and Svetlana Khorkina of Russia have accomplished the same. 19-year-old Mustafina won the 2010 World all-around title in Rotterdam and added silvers on vault, bars and floor exercise. She won a bronze on uneven bars during the first day of event finals here as well.
All-around silver medalist Kyla Ross was her usual consistent self, showing an elegant performance on balance beam for the silver medal, bringing her medal count in Antwerp to three, including a silver on bars. Ross also finished fifth on floor after a hit performance.
It was a disappointing day for Romania, which came away with just a single medal out of three chances. Iordache, the favorite on beam, fell on her tucked full during the first 15 seconds of her routine, but swallowed her disappontment and came back on floor exercise to hit her tumbling (double double tuck, full in tuck, triple full and double pike) to claim bronze.
The U.S. men picked up another two medals on the second day of event finals from Olympian John Orozco, who solidified his comeback from ACL surgery with a bronze on parallel bars. The powerful Steven Legendre, an event finalist on floor at the past four World Championships, came through with the silver on vault for a clean Dragulescu and a Tsukahara double pike.
Olympic champion Yang Hak Seon of Korea defended his World vault title, even without using his new vault, the Yang II (handspring front layout 3.5 twist). Yang's superior difficulty carried him over American Steven Legendre, the only other medalist to show two vaults of 7.0 difficulty or higher (Dragulescu and Tsuk double pike).
Kristian Thomas, whose stuck Yurchenko double pike electrified the British men in team finals at the 2012 Olympics, stuck an even better Yurchenko pike to open the final. He landed in bronze medal position after a solid second vault (handspring double front), proving the wisdom of the British coaches in adding him to the team at the last minute.
Chinese newcomer Lin Chaopan made a name for himself in the all-around with mostly consistent performances but made an even bigger impression on parallel bars, nailing a perfect-looking routine to tie Uchimura for the gold. The high bar final was a battle between the two lions of the event, the Netherlands's Epke Zonderland and Germany's Fabian Hambuechen. The two good friends went 1-2 in the Olympic high bar final and finished in the same position here.
Zonderland's extraordinary combinations (Cassina to Kovacs and Kolman to Gaylord II) gave him a difficulty score (7.7) that would have been hard to beat so long as he hit his routine. Hambuechen came close, showing a lower start score (7.4, many of the same skills as Zonderland but not in combinaion) but much cleaner form. In the end, however, it was Zonderland who took the title, his first World gold. With one last hit routine, Uchimura took the bronze.
U.S. domination at Worlds: The medalists
Jake Dalton -- silver on men's floor
Brandon Wynn -- bronze on rings
Steven Legendre -- silver on men's vault
John Orozco -- bronze on parallel bars
Simone Biles -- gold in the all-around, gold on floor, silver on vault, bronze on balance beam
Kyla Ross -- silver in the all-around, silver on bars, silver on balance beam
McKayla Maroney -- gold on vault