gymn Digest                 Sun, 12 Jun 94       Volume 2 : Issue 135


Today's Topics:

                 another Russian gym art. (rhythmic)

                   Anyone going to US/Rom on 6-11?

                      Attending Meets In The US

                    Everyone Please Read (2 msgs)

     Fwd: Re: More Karolyi/Zmeskal Details From The AP report...

                        karolyi training camp

          More Karolyi/Zmeskal Details From The AP report...

                    More Men's Europeans (2 msgs)

                         Nadia in the News...


                             Old gym mags

                    pharmacology & CBC TV coverage

                     Russian gym article (2 msgs)

                       Scherbo to have surgery

          Something We Already Knew But Now It's In Print...

              speaking of old IG magazines.... (2 msgs)

                       Update on Michelle Campi

                          USA-Rom:  Tickets?

                     USA-Rom Roster - US (2 msgs)

                           USA v ROM -- Men

            USA vs ROM & US Rhythmic EF will overlap on TV

            USA vs ROM -- the real story on the Men's meet

                   USA vs ROM TV Schedule (2 msgs)

                        where to put pictures?


This is a digest of the mailing list. 




Date: Thu, 9 Jun 94 18:36:36 EDT

From: ***

Subject: another Russian gym art. (rhythmic)


     Here is another gym article I came across at work. It's

about rhythmic gymnastics, which I don't follow at all, so if

this gymnast is not really "newsworthy," sorry! Also, forgive me

if I make terminology mistakes, since I know very little about

rhythmic. Happy reading!




P.S. In the article, there is a Russian word "gimnaziada." I

can't find it in any dictionary, but from context it has to be

some sort of gym competition. So I just decided to Anglicize the

spelling and call it Gymnasiada.

     I have another article about Amina Zaripova and the women's

Europeans. I'll try to translate it and post it later.



GIRLS. (By Vladimir Naipak, Sevodnya [Today], May 27, p. 8.)

Russia's team of junior rhythmic gymnasts, composed of Moscow

schoolgirls, has returned from Nicosia, the capital of Cyprus.

Irina Shiryayeva, Anna Sokolova and Anna Shishova won the team

competition at the 10th World Gymnasiada in Rhythmic Gymnastics.

Moreover, 14-year-old I. Shiryayeva was awarded the title of

absolute champion of the Gymnasiada. A brilliant success for the

pupil at the Moscow City Physical Culture and Sports Association!

     The Olympic Games, the University Games, and now the

Gymnasiada, which was organized by the International Scholastic

Sports Federation. In the past our juniors didn't participate in

competitions of this sort. But the general consensus is that they

have proven to be both extraordinarily entertaining and useful.

     Forty-four gymnasts from 15 countries battled it out in the

individual competition.

     Shiryayeva made it through the AA with the most stability.

With 36.5 points, Irina won the highest title for the first time

in her life. The silver went to A. Sokolova with 36.1, and the

bronze medal went to the Spaniard A. Tostado.

     Eight years ago, when her parents brought 6-year-old Irochka

to the sports school of the Moscow City Pioneer Palace, she was a

total novice.

     Although she was very capable, it took years for her to

master the gymnastics ABCs. It was only this past February that

she had her first major success, at the Russian championships in

Astrakhan. Irina was second AA and won the exercises with the


     Then came the Russian Regional Championships in Moscow. Here

Shiryayeva got the silver, finishing only .35 behind Amina

Zaripova, bronze medalist in the AA at the World Championships

and the leader of the national team. So it was natural that she

won the gold medal at the Gymnasiada.

     "Irina personifies the rhythmic gymnast" - that is how Nina

Shibayeva, chairwoman of the Russian Federation, described

Viktoria Yarmushevskaya's pupil to her.

     I can second that. In the 40 years I have spent in rhythmic

gymnastics, I have seen quite a few masters whose performances

I've wanted to watch again and again. Irina Shiryayeva is one of


     The "coach of champions," Irina Vinner, who trained many

famous gymnasts, recently showed an interest in Shiryayeva. The

union of the two Irinas and Viktoria cannot fail to bring new





Date: Mon, 06 Jun 1994 12:46 EDT

From: ***

Subject: Anyone going to US/Rom on 6-11?


Boston area Gymn'ers -


If you're going to the US/Romania women's meet in Worcester on Saturday,

June 11 and have room in your car for two very nice and very enthusiastic

fans, please e-mail me privately.


We'll be happy to contribute to gas/tolls/parking, and we'd be eternally

grateful.  Plus it would be fun to meet some of you in person!


Again, private e-mail please - don't want to clutter up the list, and I'm

on Digest anyway.







Date: Mon, 06 Jun 94 22:48:43 EDT

From: ***

Subject: Attending Meets In The US


Since someone asked about US/ROM tickets I will offer a hint for those of you

who may not know. When attending meets in the US it is almost always better

to buy tickets at the door rather than in advance. The reason I suggest this

is that often the seats you buy even at the earliest possible moment will not

mesure up to the seats available at the me I know how

frustrating this is! Seats are often held for different reasons...local clubs

sell them, TV gets a certain number, etc....anyway the night of the meet many

tickets are returned and those are then sold at the door giving last minute

drop-ins precedence over long time ticket holders (this was even true at the

Indy worlds!!). Unfair but true. Another reason for better seats is that

arenas are often not aware of the exact floor dimensions required by a gym

meet or exhib.  since they will not often have one in their stadium and

sometimes extra seats (often on the floor... though this is more common in

exhibs than meets) are added at the last minute. I have never been to a gym

meet in the US (I'm talking USAG sponsered events not NCAA meets) that even

came close to selling out so no need to fear about being unable to get in. I

hope this saves someone out there a lot of the grief that I exprieneced when

first attending US meets.


Good Luck and Have Fun,





Date: Tue, 7 Jun 94 18:51:22 EDT

From: ***

Subject: Everyone Please Read


>Any and all opinions regarding this particular post are invited.

I want to know if you agree with me (and the other members who

have complained) or if you think people are being too sensitive.

I need to know what you all think, because after all, you *are*




Forum Manager


P.S. I know P.S's are supposed to come at the end of a message, but I wanted to

tell everyone that this is my second attempt to send this. I know it may have

gotten through already, but I have a feeling I sent it wrong - to

instead of to (I'm always forgetting that "n"!) But if I'm

remembering wrong and it DID get through last night, sorry for cluttering up

everyone's mailbox with a message they already got!




Dear Rachele and all Gymners,

     I just wanted to say I agree with what Rachele said 100%.

I'm assuming (though maybe wrongly) that a lot of the flack has

been because of the criticism of Dominique Dawes on gymn. I have

been troubled by it, especially when I wonder if she or her coach

has read any of it. Dominique strikes me as a very sensitive

person, and the one time I met her she was extremely nice, and I

hate to think how she would feel if she read some of what's been

on gymn lately. So I'd like to say some things in her defense.

First of all, I LIKE Dominique, but have been basically afraid to

"admit" it because the people who don't like her have voiced

their opinions in such a strong fashion that it's been

intimidating to me. Now I can see as well as anyone else that she

has form breaks, but it's very hard to find a gymnast who DOESN'T

have form breaks on at least one event or two. And it certainly

isn't Dominique's fault that the judges aren't deducting for

them. It's the JUDGES' fault. I really don't think it's fair to

criticize Dominique for the scores she gets, when she has no say

about it. Take it up with the judges. I also tend to agree that

it would be nice if she put her reverse hecht back into her bar

routine, but I was told by someone who knows the Code a whole lot

better than I do that one of her bar-to-bar transitions counts as

a release under the new Code. Since I'm no expert on a lot of the

technical aspects of gym, I don't know for sure whether this is

true or not, but in any case, once again it's the judges who are

responsible for the scores Dominique gets, not Dominique. So I

don't think she should be personally attacked. After all, she is

by no means the only gymnast in the world who has breaks and is

not deducted for them. Mistakes by many of the Romanians and the

ex-Sovs are overlooked too, but it seems like Dominique has been

singled out lately for criticism. I just don't think this is

right. Despite her breaks, I enjoy watching Dominique's routines

and I admire her for how much she has improved over the years.

She also seems to have a very good, sportsmanlike attitude, and I

admire that too. I respect her a lot as a person and an athlete,

especially after having learned that her family is breaking up.

That is a hard thing for any teenager to go through, yet she has

maintained her status as one of the US's top gymnasts despite the

inner pain she must be going through. But I think most of all I

admire her decision to turn down all the prize money she's won so

she can go on to college, get a good education and go on

competing in the NCAA program. She really seems to have her

priorities straight as far as the importance of an education

goes. And I hope that, like Kelly Garrison, she will compete both

NCAA and internationally. I respect other people's right not to

like her style of gymnastics or not to like her for whatever

other reason, but I agree with Rachele that those views should be

expressed tactfully and in a sportsmanlike way if they're going

to be posted on gymn. There are definitely gymnasts that I don't

care for either, but when I want to express those kinds of

opinions, I try to do it by private e-mail instead of on gymn. I

think a lot of us know each other, either by having met in person

or just by writing to each other by e-mail, so my suggestion

would be that if you really want to get something off your chest

or rant and rave about some gymnast, coach, etc., in a way that

would be considered "flaming," do it on private e-mail instead of

on Gymn, a public forum. Then fewer people's feelings would be

hurt and Gymn's reputation won't suffer needlessly.






Date: Wed, 8 Jun 94 13:18:45 BST

From: ***

Subject: Everyone Please Read


Hi all,


I thought I'll try to clear this subject up once and for all (sorry

Rachele I know this has probably nothing to do with gym but I've

been writing out this message or similar for a few people so I thought

I'll make it public...). First I have to apologise again for the

Worlds94 article that Michelle wrote concerning the Dawes incident.

I have to say that that was actually a letter from her to me alone.

It was not intended to be public.

After reading the commments I thought they were rather good (generally)

and asked her if I can post it onto 'Gymn'. She said it's OK and so

I did. I have tried to cut out the unecessary bits and pieces (in fact

I have cut out a lot already) but I left the Dawes bit alone because

I thought if I'd have cut that off it would be discontinuous (since

that was one of the major moments in the meet). I didn't edit it either

since that would mean it was not 'Michelle's comments' as I said at

the beginning of the article. I guess since I know Michelle well, so

we were very blunt with each other in our letters when discussing

gymnastics. I didn't know it would have caused much trouble so I'm

sorry if I let 'Gymn' down. I just thought you guys might like to

hear of the true feelings of one who had been there. I'm sure if she had

Gymn in mind when she wrote the article, it would've been much more

pleasant to read for the general public. When I was writing my messages

to 'Gymn', I did try to be impartial e.g. my Europeans comments, I did

show preferences yes but not expressed whom I don't like,etc. (I don't



So sorry again to you guys out there (ESPECIALLY Dominique herself if

she does read this.), I hope I haven't made many enemies by that and

I wish you will all forgive my thoughtlessness.


Yours apologetically,






Date: Sat, 11 Jun 94 23:23:28 PDT

From: ***

Subject: Fwd: Re: More Karolyi/Zmeskal Details From The AP report...




Forwarded message:

Subj:    Re: More Karolyi/Zmeskal Details From The AP report...

Date:    94-06-11 23:22:13 PDT


>'My very quiet and happy life has been interrupted by this little thing next

>to me,'' Karolyi said. ''I had a hard time convincing myself to come back.

>But I said to myself, 'Bela, you've never had anyone so dedicated and close

>to your heart. You must come back!'''...


Am I the only one who reads these words and feels a little abdominal

discomfort? Nobody else thinks this quote sounds maybe a eensy-weensy little

bit self-important? Perhaps a very little teeny tad egotistical?


>''We are here to add a little spice to gymnastics,''


Oh, you mean it was BLAND without you, Bela?


 How does anyone on GYMN or elsewhere take this without screaming? The fans,


calling for the head of any person who spoke with such arrogance! Wake up

people! For all he has done we should all realize he is JUST ANOTHER COACH

(albiet one whose athletes have compiled an excellent record), and not the

father of modern gymnastics. If Pat Riley spoke this way in basketball, or if

Tom Lasorda spoke this way in baseball, they would be lambasted by those in

the press that cover those sports, and rightfully so.


But, whatever. It's YOUR sport. I simply feel that the second a coach or an

athlete or an administrator becomes more important than the sport itself,

that sport sits on the edge of a dangerous precipice.


Anyway, I wish Kim all the luck in the world. She, at least, knows that

performance talks, and P.R. walks.






Date: Wed, 8 Jun 94 22:12:35 EDT

From: ***

Subject: karolyi training camp


At the Karolyi training camp last week there was a small group

working out together...Kim Zmeskel, Wendy Bruce, and Kerri Strug.

I was told that Kerri looked GREAT! As far as I know, she was not

staying on, but going back to Tuscon. I also have no idea why Wendy

Bruce was there.




Date: Sat, 11 Jun 94 13:48:51 EDT

From: ***

Subject: More Karolyi/Zmeskal Details From The AP report...


WORCESTER, Mass. -- World-renowned gymnastics coach Bela Karolyi said Friday

he has been lured out of retirement to coach former pupil Kim Zmeskal in her



''My very quiet and happy life has been interrupted by this little thing next

to me,'' Karolyi said. ''I had a hard time convincing myself to come back.

But I said to myself, 'Bela, you've never had anyone so dedicated and close

to your heart. You must come back!'''...


nnounced the comeback at the 1994 Budget Rent A Car Gymnastics Invitational

at the Worcester Centrum, are eyeing the 1996 Atlanta Olympics and a chance

to erase bad memories from the 1992 Games...


(About Kim's Olympics)...She continued to struggle throughout the week, and

by the end of the Games, the then-16-year-old was a crying, heartbroken



(Kims' Quotes) ''I think I've grown up a lot since then,'' Zmeskal said. ''I

think about things a lot more now. Before, (gymnastics) was just for fun. The

break made me realize how special gymnastics is to me.''...''I think I've

grown up a lot since then,'' Zmeskal said. ''I think about things a lot more

now. Before, (gymnastics) was just for fun. The break made me realize how

special gymnastics is to me.''


(Karolyi's quotes) ''We are here to add a little spice to gymnastics,''

Karolyi said. ''Kim made up her mind to challenge herself and all the other

athletes involved in preparation for '96.''


Kim is supposed to do an exhib after the USA/ROM dual meet the article







Date: Tue,  7 Jun 94 22:09:00 UTC

From: ***

Subject: More Men's Europeans


More about the men's Europeans, from the German sports magazine _Kicker_:


Sr. AA

 1. Ivan Ivankov (BLR)      57.549

 2. Igor Korobchinsky (UKR) 56.799

 3. Yevgeny Shabaev (RUS)   56.749

 4. Alexei Nemov (RUS)      56.624

 5. Valery Belenky (GER)    56.412

 6. Yuri Chechi (ITA)       56.150


The GER men's team was composed of Valery Belenky, Andreas Wecker, Ralf

Buchner, Marius Toba and Maik Krahberg.  I don't know which was the




Jr. EF (partial results only)

 FX: 1. Ioannis Melissanidis (GRE) 9.325; 3. Sergei Pfeifer (GER) 9.275

 PH: 1. Eric Casimir (FRA) 9.475

 R:  1. Matteo Ferreti (ITA) 9.375; 2. Pfeifer (GER) 9.275

 V:  1. Florentin Pescaru (ROM) 9.531

 PB: 1. Ivan Pavlovsky (BLR) 9.275; 3. Pfeifer (GER) 9.125

 HB: 1. Cioana (ROM?) 9.512; 3. Rene Chernitshek (GER) 9.250


I *think* that Pfeifer won the AA title (for the 2nd time).  He's 17, and

was born in Dushanbe, Tajikstan.






Date: Tue, 07 Jun 94 20:15:46 EDT

From: ***

Subject: More Men's Europeans


>The GER men's team was composed of Valery Belenky, Andreas Wecker, Ralf

Buchner, Marius Toba and Maik Krahberg.  I don't know which was the



Does this mean we can try to get Ivankov and Voropaev to compete for the US

in Atlanta? <g>


Seriously, was is the current waiting period and requirement before "changing

teams."  I think we discussed this before, but it was never really resolved.






Date: Thu, 09 Jun 94 06:40:23 EDT

From: ***

Subject: Nadia in the News...


Outakes from a news article on tourism in Boston...




rental company Budget Rent a Car's Eastern regional operation based in Boston

hosts a dinner and forum to celebrate the continued success of Boston's

growing tourism industry, including two Budget-sponsored events -- U.S.A.

Gymnastic Invitational (June 10-11) and the local World Cup Soccer Games

(June 21 - July 9).




    -- Two-time Olympic champion Nadia Comaneci will sign autographs from

6:30-7:30 p.m. during the event cocktail hour.





So Rachelle did I do it right? No copyright infringements?




Date: Wed, 8 Jun 94 17:11:56 EDT

From: ***

Subject: obituary


     I don't follow rhythmic gymnastics, but a coworker

showed me this obituary in a Russian paper. I thought some of

you on Gymn might like to see it.




(Note: "Sinichka" means "titmouse," a kind of bird, in Russian

and Ukrainian.)



(By Vladimir Naipak, Sevodnya [Today], June 1, 1994.) Natalia

Ovchinnikova, two-time USSR AA champion in rhythmic

gymnastics and an instructor at the Ukrainian State University of

Physical Education and Sports, telephoned me from Kiev late in

the evening: "We've had a misfortune. Natasha Sinitsina was

killed in a car crash."

     How unfair fate sometimes is. The beautiful, beloved

pupil "Sinichka" has flown away from us. In early May she

celebrated her 20th birthday. A week ago Natasha brilliantly won

the Ukrainian Student Championships in Berdyansk. On Saturday

she was supposed to have taken her last test in track and field to

complete her sophomore year at the university, but the tragedy

occurred the evening before.

     A year and three months ago, also in a car crash, we lost

World AA Champion Oksana Kostina of Irkutsk. Now Natalia

Sinitsina has died - an international-class Master of Sport, many-

time champion of the USSR and a medalist at the European


     When Natasha had only just appeared on the gymnastics

floor, the famous Albina Deryugina told me, "Look, a star is

rising!" She was not mistaken. Natasha was a gymnast whose

captivating performances could be watched again and again. I

can confirm this, for I myself presented her with prizes as a two-

time winner at the international tournament the Aleksandra

Semyonova-Naipak Cup in Kharkov. Now the fairy tale is over.

     Dear fellows, don't speed in your Zhigulis, Volgas,

BMWs and Mercedes. Take care of your fiancees. They are so

fragile. Oksana didn't live to see her wedding day. Natasha also

didn't have time to put on the wedding dress that had been

tailored for her.

     "On Monday she said goodbye to us with it on," her

mother Lyudmila Nikiforovna told me by telephone. All of

Pavlograd saw "Sinichka" off.




Date: Thu, 9 Jun 1994 11:04:20 +119304128 (EDT)

From: ***@polar.Bowdoin.EDU

Subject: Old gym mags


Hello gymn,

      I have a bunch of old IGs from the end of 1983 to about 1992 and

some USA Gymnastics magazines from somewhere in that time period also.

Some of them are a bit cut up but if anyone wants them, I will mail them

to you.  The only thing I ask is that you reimburse me for the postage

because they are kind of heavy.  I am currently not on gymn so I would ask

you to e-mail me directly if you want them and send your mailing address.




Date: Mon,  6 Jun 1994 14:51:54 UTC-0700

From: ***

Subject: pharmacology & CBC TV coverage




    Last week Texx inquired about the contents of Midol.  Each original Midol

caplet contains: acetylsalicylic acid (ASA) 486 mg, caffeine 32.4 mg and

cinnamedrine 5.5 mg.  The extra strength stuff has slightly different

ingredients (possibly no caffeine) but I can't remember for sure.


CBC TV Coverage


   Did anyone catch the coverage of the Canadian championships on CBC on

Saturday?  My TV guide lacked to mention it in the sports summary and I forgot

that it was on that day, so I missed it.  (On Sunday I found the scrap of

paper that I had written the broadcast date on when they mentioned it during

the world's coverage in May.)


    I know that this information is totally out of date, but for those

interested in what CBC covered for the worlds, I kept track of what was

shown.  I won't put any comments about the routines themselves since a) I

didn't write any down and can't remember any and b) the routines themselves

have already been discussed on gymn. 

    Elfi Schlegel (a former Canadian gymnast) and Scott Russell were the

commentators.  At the start of the coverage, they showed some highlights of

the Canadian competitors.  No Canadians made it to the finals so these were

all preliminary round routines.  They showed Stacey Galloway's unevens, Jaime

Hill's floor, Marilou Cousineau's beam and floor.  There was no mention of

Stella Umeh.  Does anyone know what has happened to her?  On the men's side,

they showed Kris Burley's parallel bars, Peter Schmidt on the high bar, Alan

Nolet on the high bar and on floor and Richard Ikeda on high bar.

    They then had a piece on animals in Australia (kangaroos and koala bears

mainly).  Then they showed the following men's floor routines:  Grigory

Misutin (UKR), Ioannis Melissandis (GRE), Neil Thomas (GBR) and Vitaly

Scherbo (BLR).  Then they had a blurb about famous Australian athletes and

entertainers.  The only women's vault that they showed was Gina Gogean's

(ROM).  The only men's pommel horse routine that they showed was by Marius

Urzica (ROM).  They showed the following women's uneven bar routines:

Lavinia Milosovici (ROM), Dina Kochetkova (RUS), Luo Li (CHN), Dominique

Dawes (USA), and Svetlana Chorkina (RUS).  Then on men's rings they showed

Yuri Chechi (ITA) (they spelled his first name Jury), Dan Burinca (ROM),

Andreas Wecker (GER), Paul O'Neill (USA) and Valeri Belenki (GER).

   Next they showed a piece on the Australian Sports Institute.  Then they

showed Vitaly Scherbo's vault, but no one else's.  On the beam they showed

Shannon Miller (USA), Lilia Podkopayeva (UKR), Oskana Fabrichnova (RUS) (they

spelled her first name Oxana), Lavinia Milosovici (ROM) and Dominique Dawes


    Then they had an interview with the president of FIG.  They showed Rustam

Sharipov (UKR) and Huang Liping (CHN) on men's parallel bars.  Moving on to

women's floor exercise, they showed Gina Gogean (ROM), Lavinia Milosovici

(ROM), Dominique Dawes (USA), Shannon Miller (USA), Mo Huilan (CHN) and Dina

Kochetkova (RUS).  Finally, on men's high bar, they showed Chainey Umphrey

(USA), Ivan Ivankov (BLR), Vitaly Scherbo (BLR) and Zoltan Supola (HUN).

    So, a mixed bag of coverage.  Some events they showed a lot of (relatively

speaking) and other events they had very little coverage of and of course

the required human interest filler stories were present as well.  I didn't

actually time how many minutes of gymnastics were shown and I forget how

long the coverage was in total.






Date: Mon, 6 Jun 94 17:11:28 EDT

From: ***

Subject: Russian gym article


My boss just handed me an article on the status of Russian gymnastics dated May

27. I've only skimmed it, but it seems fairly interesting. For some reason,

it's accompanied by a photo of Groshkova - I don't think Russian newspaper

editors realize who Russia's gymnasts are and whether they're still competing

or not! (In '86 they ran a photo of Omelianchik, who was World AA champ at the

time, and said it was Olga Strazheva making her debut at the Goodwill Games!)

Anyway, this recent article tells where some of the ex-Sovs are and has a short

quote by Dina Kochetkova. I'll try to whip off a translation and post it. If I

don't have time to do the whole article, I'll just hit the highlights.

Unfortunately I don't have time right now (I'm at work and should be, well,

working...) But I'll try to get to it later in the week.





Date: Tue, 7 Jun 94 17:48:30 EDT

From: ***

Subject: Russian gym article


Hi Gymners! Here's the Russian gymnastics article. I translated

it REALLY fast, so please excuse any spelling errors, strange-

sounding English, etc. There were a couple of Russian phrases I

was a little unsure of, so I had to make my best guess.

Hopefully I wasn't too far off! (But it makes the title of the article





     Guesswork on the Gymnastics Podium

(By Natalya Slavina, Sevodnya [Today], May 26, p. 8)


     Although Russian gymnasts won only silver medals at the

recent Women's European Championships in Stockholm, second

place, in experts' opinions, is a "prized achievement." After all,

for well-known reasons, the Russian team is being created

practically from scratch.

     Fortunately, thanks to Leonid Arkaev, head coach of the

national team, Russia has preserved the traditions of the Soviet

gymnastics school. Evidence of this was the World

Championships in Brisbane, Australia in April, where Muscovite

Dina Kochetkova was the bronze medalist in the AA. Let's try

to do some guesswork on the topic of what awaits Russian

gymnasts in the near future.

     By analyzing the Russian Championships in Voronezh,

the "Stars of the World" tournament in St. Petersburg and the

competitions in Brisbane, one can draw the conclusion that the

"stronger sex" is holding on more confidently under the current

difficult conditions than the girls are. This can be attributed to

the fact that men's competitions, especially the tournament in

Brisbane, looked more like a championships of the former Soviet

Union. The rivals clearly weren't a mystery to one another -

after so many years of "joint life," the schools of our CIS

colleagues are thoroughly known to one another. Aleksei

Voropayev, an Olympic champion in Barcelona, performed well

in Australia, winning the silver medal. But the main discovery of

the season was, perhaps, Muscovite Yevgeny Shabayev. In

Brisbane he was only fifth, but in the opinion of experts he has

every chance of becoming the favorite on the world podium in

the very near future.

     But the Russian girls have to compete against real

foreigners: the Americans, the Romanians. We recently learned

from a report by Germany's DPA agency that German

gymnastics also intends to get back the vanguard positions it

lost. At least, national team coach Hannelore Zauer said, "I am

sure that in time, the female gymnasts in Germany will once

again show the same level as Olympic champions Karin Janz

and Maxi Gnauck."

     The biggest problem for Russian sports in general, and

for gymnastics in particular, is a "brain drain." Olympic

champions Valery Lyukin and Dmitry Bilozerchev are in the US,

Aleksandr Tkachev, Lidia Gorbik, Valentin Mogilny and Olga

Bicherova are in France, and Masha [Maria] Filatova is in

Ireland. Nikolai Andrianov, six-time Olympic champion in

Montreal, intends to go to Japan. The people have left who could

have passed on the best traditions of the country's gymnastics to

the youngsters. The reason they left is clear: Their knowledge

was not being called upon, and they wanted to receive pay that

was worthy of their work. In general, the Russian gymnastics

team isn't going through the best times right now.

     "Are you afraid to go out on the podium all by yourself,

so to speak?" a Sevodnya correspondent asked Dina Kochetkova

in Voronezh. "After all, all our stars were born and performed in

the glorious aura of their more experienced teammates. For

example, Boginskaya went onto the podium having Lena

Shushunova behind her. The unforgettable 'Goddess' herself

supported Tatyana Gutsu. How do you feel, not having a strong

'covering force'?"

     "Of course, you feel calmer when there's an experienced

leader on the team. But if the situation develops in such a way

that there's nothing you can do about it, you have to 'play and

try to win.'"

     Before the next competitions of the season, the most

important of which will be the Goodwill Games (they will be

held in St. Petersburg in June) and the team championships in

Dortmund (Nov. 15-20), one can state that our young gymnasts,

who are working on the podium "without a safety net," are faced

with a difficult task ~ to restore the glory of the country's

gymnastics. Judging from how carefully foreign experts are

keeping track of our newcomers, they have realistic chances of

doing so.




Date: Thu, 09 Jun 94 02:13:53 EDT

From: ***

Subject: Scherbo to have surgery


I think George mentioned that Scherbo was going to have surgery for his

shoulder.  Here's some more detail from Reuters:


"Vitaly Scherbo, who won six gold medals at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics, is

to have a shoulder operation which could sideline him until the world

championships in November, the Sport Express newspaper said on Wednesday.

     Scherbo from Belarus is suffering from shoulder joint problems which can

be cured only by arthroscopic surgery, the newspaper quoted medical experts

in Moscow as saying.

     It said the gymnast was likely to have the operation at the end of June

and might not recover fully until the world championships in Dortmund,







Date: Sat, 11 Jun 94 13:41:42 EDT

From: ***

Subject: Something We Already Knew But Now It's In Print...


>From the AP newswire (I was looking for US vs ROM material...fat chance eh?)


Gymnastics: World-renowned coach Bela Karolyi said he has been lured out of

retirement to coach former pupil Kim Zmeskal in her comeback.






Date: Thu, 09 Jun 94 11:31:47 -0400

From: ***

Subject: speaking of old IG magazines....


Would anyone here happen to have an old IG that has the '79 Men's NCAA

competition?  I think it's '79; anyways, it's the competition that was held

at LSU.


There's a picture of all the gymnasts lined up at the beginning of the

competition and I'm in the somewhere (the only competitor behind the

Massachusetts sign).  I used to have the issue, but I think I heaved all of my

IGs when I left college.  I'd like a copy of it though.


If anyone has this, or knows where I can get one, I'd appreciate it.  Obviously

I'd pay you for it plus shipping.







Date: Thu, 09 Jun 94 17:36:56 EDT

From: ***

Subject: speaking of old IG magazines....


>If anyone has this, or knows where I can get one, I'd appreciate it.

 Obviously I'd pay you for it plus shipping.


Well now, geez, it just so happens that I work for the International

Gymnastics Hall of Fame and we're selling all our old "IG's" (among other

things)...If you send $3  to IGHOF 227 Brooks St. Oceanside, CA 92054 I'll

send you a catalog...the $3 is applied to anything you may order.


I'll post this to the main list since others may care (or not)...IGHOF *IS*

non-profit so it's not exactly for personal gain right? Anyway, hope this

blatent "ad" doesn't offend anyone.


Also this still doesn't mean that any of the annoying/stupid things I say

represent Glenn or the IGHOF in an yway shape or form.


Thanks A Lot,





Date: Mon, 06 Jun 94 19:31:01 PDT

From: ***

Subject: Update on Michelle Campi


Much has been said on this forum deriding gymnasts who attempt to "come back"

after an absence from the sport. My own comments have been

none-too-complimentary about those past their prime.


But I think that everyone will agree that coming back from an injury is a

different case altogether.


To see Michelle writing those infamous words (ILL BE BACK) speaks to the

highest principles of gymnastics and athletics.


If anyone on this net is in touch with Michelle, please let her know that we

at Li-Ning's have kept our girls updated on Michelle's condition, and her

words are an inspiration to us all. We wish her the best of luck and health.






Date: Mon, 6 Jun 1994 21:25:22 -0400 (EDT)


Subject: USA-Rom:  Tickets?


Hi there,

Are there still tickets available for the USA-Romania meet?

Where is the meet being held - at the Centrum?  And where do you

get tickets and how much were they?  Thanks!





Date: Mon, 06 Jun 94 18:24:06 EDT

From: ***

Subject: USA-Rom Roster - US


Rosters for the US team for USA-Romania




Shannon Miller

Larissa Fontaine

Sarah Cain

Marianna Webster

Amy Chow

Doni Thompson

one other I don't remember (I left the list on my desk at work, this is from



Dom Moceanu had to withdraw due to injury




Mihai Bagiu (you can cheer now, Susan)

Robby Kieffer

The OSU Contingent (Drew Durbin, Blaine Wilson, Kip Simons)

again one other who I don't remember






Date: Mon, 06 Jun 94 20:21:18 EDT

From: ***@MIT.EDU

Subject: USA-Rom Roster - US


>Rosters for the US team for USA-Romania




>Shannon Miller

>Larissa Fontaine

>Sarah Cain

>Marianna Webster

>Amy Chow

>Doni Thompson

>one other I don't remember (I left the list on my desk at work, this is from



After the first 2, I really don't know much about these girls.  What are

their strengths?  Special moves?  (I'm going to be going to and reporting

on this meet, so I thought I'd try to get an advance idea of what to expect.)

Is Doni Thompson one of the younger girls?


>Dom Moceanu had to withdraw due to injury


aw darn, I really wanted to see more of her!






Date: Sat, 11 Jun 94 19:12:50 EDT

From: ***

Subject: USA v ROM -- Men


This is just a quick note to deliver results:



1. Romania

2. USA



1. Marius Urzica

2. Mihai Bagiu

3. Blaine Wilson


I will send in a (much) more complete report tomorrow or the next day (Sunday

or Monday).






Date: Wed, 8 Jun 94 13:42:57 EDT

From: ***@BBN.COM

Subject: USA vs ROM & US Rhythmic EF will overlap on TV


According to the schedule reported in May when CBS broadcast

the US Rhythmic All Around, CBS will cover the event finals

on Sunday, June 19, at 4:00 p.m. 


This overlaps the US vs ROM coverage (2:30 - 4:30 p.m.)

by half and hour.  Crank up the VCRs!






Date: Sat, 11 Jun 94 22:53:05 EDT

From: ***

Subject: USA vs ROM -- the real story on the Men's meet


(found an hour to whip this up tonight, so here goes)



Budget Rent-A-Car Dual

The Spectrum/ Worcester, MA

June 10-11, 1994


Well, friends, the summer seems to be a maze of meets this year, and

the USA vs. ROM dual was yet another date in the US calendar. This

seemed to be a really low key meet, however. The Americans did not put

forth their best men, and many of the men from both teams there seemed

unprepared for an international competition. Unfortunately, the meet

was more than merely "lackluster" -- it was disastrous for many

gymnasts. I was quite disappointed, as I hadn't seen many of these

athletes before and so was looking forward to seeing the routines and

moves that I had only heard other people talking about. The general

talk on the floor, though, was that the American guys are looking at

USAs in August, and were not really training hard enough to make an

impact at this meet. A somewhat interesting statistic: the average

score of the men's meet, with all scores from both teams, was only a



First off, here are the results:


Team: 1. ROM 277.20 (best = 47.4 on rings)

      2. USA 276.10 (best = 46.65 on high bar)



 1. Marius Urzica    ROM  55.40 (9.3, 9.8, 8.85, 9.15, 9.35, 8.95)

 2. Mihai Bagiu      USA  55.35 (9.2, 9.6, 8.95, 9.00, 9.10, 9.50)

 3. Blaine Wilson    USA  55.00 (9.2, 8.9, 9.30, 9.45, 9.05, 9.10)

 4. Alexander Ciuca  ROM  54.35 (9.0, 8.85, 9.35, 8.75, 9.3, 9.10)

 5. Nistor Sandro    ROM  53.80 (7.95, 9.45, 9.5, 9.35, 8.35, 9.2)

 6. Steve McCain     USA  46.55

 7. Cristian Leric   ROM  46.15

 8. Robert Taciulet  ROM  45.55

 9. Jeff Lutz        USA  45.45

10. Kip Simons       USA  44.55

11. Drew Durbin      USA  43.90

12. Dan Burinca      ROM  37.05

13. Nicu Stroia      ROM  36.20

14. Rob Kieffer      USA  36.15


Note, this competition utilized the new 7-6-5 format of the FIG. I.e.,

seven team members, six competing per apparatus, five scores counting

per apparatus. The six on each apparatus can change from event to

event, and line-ups can change. So, all of those scores from McCain on

down are "low" because they didn't do six routines. Note that McCain

actually had an outstanding meet, all of his scores being 9.2 and up.

If he had competed rings and managed to get a 8.85, he would have tied

for first.


The new 7-6-5 format was very beneficial to the US men.  Drew Durbin

(Ohio State Univ.) injured himself badly on floor (7.45), and so was

drawn from the vaulting line-up, the USA choosing to compete Kieffer

instead.  I definitely like that the new 7-6-5 allows the coaches more

flexibility and fewer of those "do I compete an injured gymnast?"

decisions.  (Note, floor was Durbin's first event, but he did compete

all the rest except for vault.)


Anyways, on to the competition.


The USA men


Well, the US men had a rough start on floor, garnering only a 45.5,

their lowest event total of the day (but they still beat Romania on

floor -- an indication of how poorly floor went for both teams).

Still, there were some highlights: Simons threw a nice layout Thomas

for his second pass, Wilson displayed good front tumbling, Bagiu

showed off his smooth body line (what a nice Manna!). And McCain

surprised with a "one and a half twisting one and three quarter". (I

missed it, having turned away briefly, and turned back in time to see

the curly blond McC dive head first into the mat. "What was that?" I

asked my neighbor, who then kindly informed me of the exact number of

twists and flips.) Kieffer threw a difficult set -- laid out full-in,

for starters, but lacked his normal polish also put a hand down -- 8.8

was the result. I've seen him do it better. Anyways, the real story of

this rotation for the US men was Drew Durbin, who had a miserably

painful floor set, crashing on each pass and then limping off the

floor. I felt bad for the guy. I've heard so much about his potential,

so I was hoping to see the better side of his gymnastics.


Don't worry, I didn't take such detailed notes for all of the

rotations.  ;)


OK, second. US men on pommels. Sure wish I knew what was going on when

I watch pommels. Our best pommels were from Durbin and Bagiu (who did

one or two "double loop to Russian"'s, I am told, which is an E move),

but neither were particularly memorable. Speaking of memory, Blaine

Wilson, I can recall, because his loose feet really show up poorly on

this event. Simons fell off, Lutz pretty much just made it through.


Rotation three, US men on rings. More of the same from pommels-- not

too much to ooh or ahh over. I liked Durbin's routine, which I noted

as "creative!", and Kip Simons really impressed me in proper Ohio

State fashion (they are kings on rings). I was also impressed that

Bagiu picked up very little swing, seeing as he's 5'10" and all.


American men on vaulting for rotation four. Can we say "Kasamatsu"?

Lutz and Wilson both threw 1.5 twisting versions. McCain was our

anchor with a 1.5 twisting Yurchenko. When Bagiu vaults, his flipping

seems to be moving r e a l l y   s l o w l y, no doubt because he's so

tall (look at an old tape of Bogie vaulting, and put a pair of short

shorts on her -- poof, it's Bagiu!) (OK, so I exaggerate.)


Bogie, btw, now resides in Boston.


OK, now we've trudged over to Pbars. The US men didn't miss in a big

way except for Durbin (who looked really smooth, nonetheless), but

never really turned on the energy, mustering only 45.55 for their

event total. The routines just weren't that hard. (A whoo-hoo to

Mihai, though, for his fun Manna to double front).


Last rotation! (in my US men's segment, anyways) High bar --

traditionally a high-flying event for the US men. <nudge nudge, elbow>

Get it? Get it? "high-flying"? HA! (sigh). Anyways, yes, by now I was

pretty sleepy, but the US men hit some swinging routines (there I go

again) for a 46.65, a decent event total. Durbin grimaced on his

landing, and I was mighty pleased he was done for the night and could

get off that left ankle. Bagiu threw a Gold Cup Kovacs (notice how all

of the men from Albuquerque do a Kovacs? Ringnald, Dimas, Bagiu.) and

a triple dismount. McCain threw a Stalder into piked Tkatchev, and

also a one-arm Gienger. His routine was not of the caliber that won

him the '93 NCAA high bar title, however (which all of you old-time

Gymners know I hold in my list of top two favorite men's routines --

the other being Lamorte's rings.  yummy.)


OK, now on the Romanian men.


Keep in mind, Gymn friends, that I really was not particularly excited

by this meet, and that also, I knew none of the Romanian men, really.

So, keeping track of who did what was a bit more difficult that I'd

like to admit...


Anyways. On pommels, the Romanian men got off to a pretty good start

-- it was their second best event of the night. I was not impressed

with Ciuca (bad form) or Stroia (fell off), but the rest were all

good. Marius Urzica, however... Energizer ought to hire this kid (he's

18). He is the reigning world champion on pommels, and boy does it

show. Urzica was the only gymnast to elicit a "wow!" from me on

pommels, which is amazing considering my illiteracy with that event.

Mayland later tells me that he did three double loop's to Russians on

one pommel, then crossed over and did another double loop to Russian

on the other -- four E moves in a row. Now, if you'd asked me, I'd say

"he had outstanding work on one pommel." Live and learn.  =)


The second rotation saw the Romanian men on rings, and this was

certainly a treat. Probably the best part of the meet for me. Almost

all did some sort of double layout dismount (some with a twist, some

not). All of the men got lots of bonus with great strength and

control. The most eye catching mount was Ciuca, who did a back roll to

Maltese. Stroia did not hold most of his strength elements for the

requisite two seconds. Burinca, up last for the Romanian men, taught

everyone a lesson, scoring a 9.8. (On rings, he was 3rd in the 1994

Worlds and 5th in 93.) Sure wish I could list what he did (though it

would be quite long), but for those who know his gymnastics,

apparently he did his normal routine (this info from conversations I

overheard on the floor).


>From here, the Romanian men started to lose momentum. The third

rotation saw them vault to a 46.6, which is decent, but nothing to

jump up and down about. Burinca got good distance with his Kasamatsu

layout full, and Leric impressed with a Kasamatsu double twist. Sandru

had a Yurchenko 1.5, which is noteworthy in and of itself, but was not

executed particularly well.


Round four: the beginning of the Romanian demise. They plummeted to a

45.6 Pbars (still better than the US at 45.55). Leric missed, Sandru

missed (on a Diamidov 1.25), Taciulet landed a straddle cut (is that

what it was?) on his legs in the middle of the bars. Sigh. Urzica and

Ciuca both made it through unscathed, though.


On to the fifth event, high bar.  Can it be worse?  Yes... a 45.5.

Burinca was up first and impressed with a layout Jaeger and a

full-twisting double layout dismount (flaired).  Ciuca then hit his

double double dismount.  But Urzica missed a full-twisting layout

Jaeger (still scored 8.95) and Stroia missed a Tkatchev, landing on

his feet (can we say "no rotation"?).  Then Sandru missed a laid-out

Tkatchev.  Sandwiched somewhere in all these off-the-mark gymansts was

Leric, who managed a pretty nice Kovacs and a tucked double double

over the bar.


Well, three major breaks on two events in a row.  *Can't* get worse,

right?  Try a 45.35 on floor.  By now, Rachele is really tired (so

much so that she writes in the third person), and loses track of all

the bobbles and misses-- it's just too many.  The Romanians, however,

had really impressed on rings, and performed sufficiently well on

pommel horse and vault to win the competition on those first three



Other notes:


-- Zmeskal performed an exhibition in which she threw more difficulty

than most of the men: a double layout, three whips through to a double

tuck, and another double tuck -- sound familiar? She bounced out (with

great excitement and energy -- a bit odd) on both of the tucked double

backs.  I sure would like to see her put a piked full-in at the end of

those three whips...


-- The Romanian men wear pants about two sizes too big.  Baggy and

then some.  You know how lady's pantyhose looks when it droops down

around your ankles?


-- The Romanian men had a female coach (!). There were several male

coaches too, of course, that were all more active on the floor, but

nevertheless, I have never even seen a female on a men's gymnastics

coaching staff. Maybe she wasn't a coach. But it sure looked like she

was quite involved with the whole thing.


-- Attendance was 3,110. Seemed like less... the stands were really



-- Zmeskal, Karolyi, and Tim Heath (her manager) held a press

conference before the meet to officially announce their comebacks. I'd

relate the interesting parts, but there really weren't any

particularly memorable quotes. It was typical Karolyi, really... it's

like Mad Lib, you can just fill in the blanks.


"I'm very _____ <insert happy word> to be here today! I have coached

many champions, but ____ <insert gymnast of the moment> was always

absolutely the grooviest, in my book. ____ <repeat name of gymnast> is

the best gymnast that has ever lived, and has the _____ <insert

honorable trait> to do what it takes to win. She has the power and

heart, and the *discipline* to excel at the highest level. She is up

to the challenge and will eat up her competition like a little lion."


Anyways, getting back on track, Zmeskal talked about how she felt she

had more to contribute to the sport, and how her break from

competition made her realize how very much the sport meant to her, etc

etc.  She missed the thrill of competition and felt she was prepared

to do what it took to make a successful comeback.  She says her

parents, friends, and former teammates have all been supportive of her

decision.  She thinks she can do what it takes because, having

graduated from high school, she has more time and she's grown a lot

since her last attempt at the Games. 


Karolyi talked about how he was so enjoying his peaceful retirement

(farming and so forth) when "this little thing beside me" (that would

be Ms. Zm, o'course) asked him to return and coach her to fame and

glory (well, neither of them phrased it that way, but hey). He said

that it is surprising how quickly the level of competition has

increased in just the two years since the Games, but he feels that

Zmeskal can do it. He said that if it were for anyone else, he would

not have come out of retirement. But for Zmeskal, who was always so

honest and never complained and never blamed anyone for anything

except herself, he felt he couldn't say "no" when she asked him to

coach her. He apparently holds his only World Champion very near and

dear to his heart.


The men's press conference was even lower-key than the men's meet

was... there's really nothing to say about it. Everyone was happy with

how they'd done. They were planning to work hard for their next big

competition (Goodwill, USA's, etc).


Btw, the reason I put Zmeskal into this report was because she

announced her comeback right before the men's meet...






Date: Tue, 07 Jun 94 17:17:50 EDT

From: ***

Subject: USA vs ROM TV Schedule


NBC will show the USA vs ROM (men and women I think) on Sunday June 19th

(orig. scheduled for the 18th I think)




                           2:30-4:30 P.M.


  Budget Rent-a-Car Gymnastics Invitational (taped)

  Romania vs. USA

  Commentators: Dan Hicks, Tim Daggett, Elfi Schlegel, Mary Ann Grabavoy

  Site: Worcester, MA







Date: Tue, 7 Jun 94 17:49:51 EDT

From: ***@BBN.COM

Subject: USA vs ROM TV Schedule


Sunday, June 19, is also the day CBS plans to show the event finals

from the US Rhythmic Gymnastics Championships (sorry, I don't

remember the exact time).






Date: Mon, 6 Jun 94 17:37:33 CDT

From: ***

Subject: where to put pictures?


Could somebody *please* tell me where the picture directory was at kentucky.

I think Ben Fu was responsible for it. I need to make room on my hard drive

and I have about 15 or 20 scans I would like to put up somewhere before I

delete them.







End of gymn Digest