UK gymnast breaks record at Europeans

Britain’s Elizabeth Tweddle became the first gymnast to top 16 points under a new scoring system at the European Women’s Championships yesterday in the central Greek city of Volos. Tweddle scored 16.050 in the individual finals of the uneven bars and finished a point ahead of Jana Sikulova of the Czech Republic, who scored 15.050. Spain’s Lenika De Simone was third with 14.825. «It was the most important win of my career,» Tweddle said. The International Federation of Gymnastics adopted a new points system after several judging errors at the 2004 Athens Olympics. The new code has been in operation since the start of this year. Romania’s triple Olympic gold medalist Catalina Ponor won the balance beam with 15.800 points, comfortably ahead of De Simone and Marina Proskurina of Ukraine with 15.350 and 15.300 respectively. Another Romanian, Sandra Izbasa, took gold in the floor exercise with 15.550 points. Italy’s Vanessa Ferrari – whose performance on the balance beam and uneven bars helped Italy to a surprise team victory on Saturday over Romania and Russia – was second with 15.450. Ponor was third on 14.600. On the vault, Russia’s Anna Grudko was first with 14.362, and Ukraine’s Olga Sherbatykh won silver with 14.300. Katja Abel from Germany came third on 14.225. The men’s European Championships begin Thursday, also in the central Greek city of Volos. (AP)