CARLOS “Caloy” Yulo is closing in on a spot to the World Artistic Gymnastics Championship set late this year in Liverpool, England where he seeks a third gold medal, and possibly more.
The two-time world champion flexed his powerful muscle and qualified in the finals of three apparatuses at the start of the 9th Asian Senior Championships in Doha, Qatar on Wednesday.
The pocket-sized wonder from Leveriza, Manila paced the qualifiers in his pet floor exercise where he drew a score of 14.800 and finished sixth in the still rings where he had 14.100.
The quintuple Southeast Asian Games gold winner, however, smoked out in the pommel horse where he slipped to 20th with a 12.933.
It was enough though to keep Mr. Yulo in the individual all-around lead after three apparatuses with a 41.833.
He was barely pacing Youth Olympics golden boy Yin Dehang of China with a 41.800 and another Chinese Yang Jiaxing with a 41.700.
Mr. Yulo has a chance to qualify in the other events — vault, parallel bars and horizontal bar — that were being played at press time.
Interestingly, Mr. Yulo is a strong contender in vault and parallel bars where he brought home a gold and silver, respectively, in last year’s World Championships in Kitakyushu, Japan.
The finals are set this weekend.
Mr. Yulo, who is also a world champion in vault in Stuttgart, Germany three years ago, expectedly carried most of the fight for Team Philippines as countrymen Jan Gwynn Timbang, John Ivan Cruz and Juancho Miguel Besana all failed to advance. — Joey Villar