CARLOS “CALOY” YULO embarks on his world championships—and Paris Olympics journey—in Antwerp sans his long-time Japanese coach Munehiro Kugiyama on Saturday.
Yulo sees action in the qualifying round for the men’s individual all-around, floor exercise, parallel bars and vault at the Sportpaleis Arena in Belgium’s capital.
Yulo has interim trainer coach Aldrin Castañeda, a first timer in the world championships, to oversee his campaign.
“He [Yulo] is okay and feeling fine and he’s 90 percent ready to go,” said Castañeda, who’s been immersed in several Southeast Asian Games but never on the world stage.
“This is a different arena. I’m stressed, so pressured, I’m feeling it both,” he said. “But not Caloy, he’s not pressured.”
“I am here to support Caloy, I know he is capable here so we’re looking for some events that he will qualify for the final round like the individual all-around, floor exercise, vault and parallel bars,” he added.
Castañeda admitted Kugiyama’s shoes are so huge for him to fill.
Yulo will be up against 22-year-old Japanese Hashimoto Daiki, gold medalist in horizontal bars and individual all-around at the Tokyo Olympics, and returning Artur Davtyan of Armenia.
Yulo, 23, needs to get into the top eight in each of the apparatuses’ final to secure a ticket to Paris Games.
Gymnastics Association of the Philippines president Cynthia Carrion expressed her confidence Yulo could make it in the individual all-around, floor exercise, vault and parallel bars.
“Caloy [Yulo] is doing very good in podium training the other day except for some changes,” Carrion-Norton said. “He is complaining that the vault is vibrating and the rings here are thicker compared to Asian [championships] and he couldn’t hold on.”
“So he will and I believe he can make it to Paris from here,” she added.