It was deja vu for rhythmic gymnastics fans: for the second day in a row, the reigning world champions form Russia didn’t quite reach the top of the standings in the qualification round.

In the individual round, three-time world champion and gold medal favorite Yana Kudryavtseva was edged out by another Russian gymnast, Margarita Mamun. In today’s group qualifications, it was Spain earning the highest score was Russia was in second.

Just 0.233 points behind the leaders, the Russian group was in no danger of failing to qualify for the eight-team final. Additionally, scores from qualifications do not carry over to the competition where medals will be determined.

Russia has won Olympic gold in the group competitions at the last four Olympics. The only title they missed was the 1996 Atlanta Games, when the discipline made its Olympic debut.

The champion at that Olympics was the Spanish group, who may be looking for a golden opportunity to celebrate the 20-year anniversary.

Also commemorating the Atlanta Games was Team USA. Rio was the first Olympics since 1996 that the U.S. was represented by a rhythmic gymnastics group. For Atlanta, they were granted a berth as the host country;  for Rio, they earned the spot by being the highest ranking team from the Americas at the 2015 World Championships.

After making several errors in their first routine using the ribbons, Kiana Eide, Alisa Kano, Natalie McGiffert, Monica Rokhman and Kristen Shaldybin fell behind the rest of the field. Despite a strong second routine using the hoops and clubs apparatus, they couldn’t make up the deficit and finished 14th out of 14.

The top eight teams that will advance to the final are:

1. Spain: 35.749
2. Russia: 35.516
3. Belarus: 35.433
4. Italy: 35.349
5. Japan: 35.149
6. Israel: 34:883
7. Bulgaria: 34.182
8. Ukraine: 33.816

Join our Newsletter for the latest news right to your inbox