Ravil Adeev: Outstanding Talent on Pommel Horse

At the junior European championships this May in Rimini, Ravil Adeev excelled as the gold medalist on pommel horse with a presentation of the most exquisite virtuosity. The 16 year old, frail looking gymnast (1.54cm, 41kg) performed the flairs just like the best pommel horse artists in the world today, and in a variety of ways, including a Magyar traveling position. At the traditional GDR-USSR dual meet in early May, the Berlin audience had the opportunity to see the talent of this Dynamo athlete from Cherkessk. Our correspondent Andreas Gotze interviewed the junior European all-around bronze medalist.

Q: How do you explain your extraordinary talent on pommel horse?

A: It's difficult to say. Each gymnast has a special talent for one or the other apparatus. With me, it showed on the horse and maybe I handle it so well because I have tried to perform with proper technique from the very beginning. If the base element, in this case a circle swing, is perfect then you can do practically anything to build on that.

Q: For a gymnast, you possess an unusually slight physique. How do you cope with the physical requirements?

A: Really well, because I'm not too weak on the apparatus. Of course, on rings I'm not Azaryan or Bilozerchev. Therefore, I'll try to put on some muscle!

Q: How did you become acquainted with gymnastics?

A: That was in 1975. My father brought me to the sports school in Cherkessk when I was 8 years old, because he wanted his son to do something physical. I really liked it there, and today I'm the first and only gymnast from Cherkessk who has had an international success.

Q: Is there an apparatus you prefer?

A: No, I perform on each apparatus gladly and I'm trying to perform to the best of my ability on all of them. I work particularly hard on floor and rings to improve myself, since only constant practice will result in improvement.

Q: Is there a gymnast who is your role model?

A: Yes, that's Vladimir Artemov, the parallel bars world champion. His strong will and fighting spirit impress me. Two years ago he endured two difficult operations after he broke his lower leg and the doctors told him his sporting career was over. However, Vladimir didn't give up - in Budapest he won his first world title.