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ATLANTA 1996 OLYMPICS | RHYTHMIC GYMNASTICS

Spain Steals Show From Bulgarians

August 03, 1996|Times Wire Services

Spain upset reigning world champion Bulgaria to win the first Olympic gold medal in rhythmic group gymnastics.

The individual competition, meanwhile, pared its field from 37 to 20, and American Jessica Davis did not make the cut. The 18-year-old from San Anselmo, Calif., was 30th. The top 20 advance to today's semifinals, with the best 10 going to Sunday's finals.

Russia, which finished between Spain and Bulgaria in the hoop round, won the bronze medal.

Spain's hoop routine, the difference-maker, was easily the best as the five gymnasts were perfectly in synch and nicely choreographed to their music--a medley mostly featuring "I Want To Be An American" from "West Side Story."

(BEGIN TEXT OF INFOBOX / INFOGRAPHIC)

MEDALISTS / Rhythmic Gymnastics

Group

GOLD: Spain

SILVER: Bulgaria

BRONZE: Russia

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