gymn Digest                 Tue, 14 Jun 94       Volume 2 : Issue 136

Today's Topics:
                  1987 World Championships (3 msgs)
                Birmingham Classic Grand Prix (2 msgs)
                           bounced messages
                       Karolyi/Zmeskal (4 msgs)
                            Rusan injured
                    USA v Romania - after the meet
                      USA vs Romania - thoughts
               USA vs ROM women's competition (3 msgs)

This is a digest of the mailing list. 


Date: Sun, 12 Jun 94 16:22:59 18000
From: ***
Subject: 1987 World Championships

I just finished watching 6+ hours of a "new" 1987 worlds video a
friend sent me.I know I'm going back a bit,but I thought I'd report
anyway.If you saw the meet on TV and/or video,join in the discussion.

1.I saw a triffis off high bar.Alfonso Rodriguez(ESP) attempted a full
twisting triple back,but faced it.Maik Belle(GDR) also performed one
earlier in the year,but not at this meet.

2.I FINALLY saw all the Romanian women's routines.The didn't have any
major mistakes,but the soviets did(bogie on bars,tougitova
and Omelianchik on beam,and Omelianchik on floor.)The Romanians were
quite a bit sloppier,but the difficulty levels of both teams were
equal.After watching both teams,I couldn't decide who actually
deserved to win.(BTW the standings were 1.Romania 2.USSR 3.GDR which
had a really low difficulty level and were just plain awful.They
should have placed 6th or 7th.As some of you might know,money
exchanged hands between the US and Romanians to boost the scores of
both parties.I don't remember much about the incident.Does anyone
else recall?

3.I thought Bilozerchev DID NOT deserve to win the AA.I actually
thought Artemov was the deserving gymnast.He didn't quite have the
difficulty of Bilo and Korolev,but he was much cleaner.Bilo had knee
bends on just about every skill on p-bars(0.01 deduction PER skill
easy) and Yuri didn't quite have the polish or amplitude on his
skills.I think that most of Dmitri was rewarded with what I call "pity
scores."Yes he did come back from a terrible accident,but that world
champion?I don't think so.

I'll finish this tomorrow.I only have five minutes left.



Date: Mon, 13 Jun 94 19:53:22 EDT
From: ***
Subject: 1987 World Championships

Well I'll comment on Billy's comments (just to clutter up everyone's

Quick Aside To McBilly...Hey guess your VCR's are working...and is this a
tape I sent you?...if not will you send it to me? (I obviously am *so* aware
my own collection)

Okay on to the commenting (yes, I know that's not really a word..or is

>The Romanians were quite a bit sloppier,but the difficulty levels of >both
teams were equal.After watching both teams,I couldn't decide >who actually
deserved to win

I'd have to agree overall but I think that the Romanians were obviously
favored in the scoring. Silivas was *so* over-scored despite her many
errors...they wanted to give the AA to her bad...she just wouldn't let them
(2 major errors...1 in team - and she was still just a smidge out of 1st! -
 and 1 in AA) so they gave it to the other Romanian. Don't get me wrong, I
really like Dobre and was quite glad to see her win.  Look at team FX where 3
Romanian's in a row got 10.0's not withstanding the obvious steps and such. I
know 10.0's were easier to get back then but geez...give me a break!  The
Sovs choked in optionals and it was OO's beam fall (all the others were
dropped scores) that kept her from the '88 Olympic team (IMHO) and her team
from the gold...or at least *deserving* the gold. I think the Romanian's were
gonna' win no matter what.  The Sov's compos (do you have those Billy?) were
easily a point better than the Romanian's...not that the scores reflected

>I thought Bilozerchev DID NOT deserve to win the AA.I actually
>thought Artemov was the deserving gymnast.He didn't quite have >the
difficulty of Bilo and Korolev,but he was much cleaner.Bilo had >knee bends
on just about every skill on p-bars(0.01 deduction PER >skill easy) and Yuri
didn't quite have the polish or amplitude on his

Okay so like, you know, I *had* to comment on this (FYI, for those of you
unaware I worship, adore, and basically live for Bilozerchev), anyway while I
agree you with you totally about his form breaks (well his p-bars aren't
*that* bad he *is* 5'8" or so...this is a long standing argument between
Billy and I). His double layouts are awful and his rings had too much
swing!!! I do think that Artemov's level of difficulty was rather pathetic in
comparison and Korolev (sorry Beth) was just plain bad (easy and poorly done
for the most part...the same routines from '80 to '88 just don't cut it).
Yuri was the one who would have taken the title if Dima didn't (he hadn't
even qualified into the AA but Luikin had to withdraw) and between the two of
them I'd say that Bilo deserved it by a mile. Valeri Luikin was the best
gymnast at the meet...but he withdrew after team (remember Arkaev carrying
him off the podium from HB? cute). I think that Dmitri *did* deserve
the win but he was hardly at his best. In his own words..."I have have never
been worse...If I had come in second I probably would have quite the sport."

Overall it was an exceptionaly controversial worlds...obviously so since  7
years later it  can still dredge up so many strong feelings.



Date: Tue, 14 Jun 1994 08:13:02 +1000
From: ***
Subject: 1987 World Championships

>1.I saw a triffis off high bar.Alfonso Rodriguez(ESP) attempted a full
>twisting triple back,but faced it.


For Alfonso the twisting triple was not an attempt, but a really
disappointing miss.  He nailed that same dismount at the 1987 NCAA
championships at UCLA in April.  His was one of three fantastic routines.
David Moriel (UCLA), Miguel Rubio (Houston Baptist) and Alfonso (Houston
Baptist) were the top three people on HB.  It was an unbelievable
championship - all three were doing 2 release moves in a row - something
very new at that time - with one arm giants.  It was the year for the
triple club.  (Yes, guys actually spent time on the phone and at meets
discussing which gymnasts throughout the country were in the "club".)
Alfonso was considered to be the best of the best for the triple club and
was given tremendous honors for the twisting triple.

Ah, just thinking of that meet brings goose bumps.



Date: Mon, 13 Jun 94 11:59:24 BST
From: ***
Subject: Birmingham Classic Grand Prix

The Birmingham Classic which is being held again this
year (September 30th to October 2nd for all those interested)
surprisingly enough in Birmingham (Thats Birmingham in the
UK not in the USA) is forming part of a Grand Prix tour.

Now I mentioned the fact that this years Birmingham Classic
was going to be a part of a Grand Prix tour after last years
event and no one had a clue what I was talking about then.
Thats probably not changed a bit but there you go :), but if
this is part of a Grand Prix tour, then where are
the other events taking place and how is this tour
going to work. Now this isnt an exhibition type tour theres
nothing showy about it its not like a theatre group tour,
this is a proper competition type tour with prize money
for winning.


Me represent anyone ? Never !!!!


Date: Mon, 13 Jun 94 12:56:48 EDT
From: ***
Subject: Birmingham Classic Grand Prix

>this is part of a Grand Prix tour, then where are
>the other events taking place and how is this tour
>going to work.

The other parts are going to be the DTB Cup and the Arther Gander Memorial
(winter version). I think they're going to be run like the last DTB where
they did prelims, then finals on each event and then after finals the top 2
got back up and do their routines again for the cash. I'm not sure but I
heard that this was part of the "Grand Prix" format. All the same gymnasts
are supposed to compete in these three events and I think it's invite
only...kinda' a replacement for the now defunct World Cup. Some of the comps
may be AA and others EF or all of them EF... I don't know;  details after DTB
were sketchy at best so if anyone else has any info go to it.



Date: Tue, 14 Jun 94 8:49:06 EDT
From: ***
Subject: bounced messages

Hi everyone!
     I just wanted to warn you that in about 20 min (9 am on June 14), OSU's
e-mail system (i.e., my mailing address) is going to be shut down
until 6 p.m. on the 15th. So my address is going to cause your posts to bounce
(I assume). Sorry! In any case, I am VERY interested in any discussion that
goes on about the '87 Worlds and may want to add something to it later, but
don't want to repeat what anyone else said. Can someone (hint to Susan!) keep
alll interesting messages and forward them to me late on the 15th or on the
16th? Thanks!


Date: Sun, 12 Jun 94 19:00:08 EDT
From: ***
Subject: Karolyi/Zmeskal

     I tend to agree with what David said about Bela's comments. But you know,
I never could really believe he ACTUALLY retired. Somehow I had a sneakingg
suspicion he and Kim would be back for '96. Bela's always been the show-biz
type, wanting to grab the spotlight and all, so I knew there'd be an
announcement of this sort some time or another. My feelings were only confirmed
when I read about Kim's exhibition. A double layout, 3 whips to a double back
and another double back certainly don't sound like something within the
capabilities of a gymnast who's been retired for 2 years! I tend to believe it
was always the game plan for her to "retire," but keep on training (obviously
in more than just a fun, relaxed way) and then resurface again. It just sounds
like the sort of plan Bela would come up with. Does anyone else feel like that
or do I just have a wild imagination?



Date: Sun, 12 Jun 94 20:18:01 PDT
From: ***
Subject: Karolyi/Zmeskal

>I tend to believe it
>was always the game plan for her to "retire," but keep on training
>in more than just a fun, relaxed way) and then resurface again. It just
>like the sort of plan Bela would come up with.

Beth is probably more right on the money with this than a lot of us are ready
to admit. I only wish that somebody in the sports press would start playing
the role of journalist rather than transcribe when Bela roars. If someone had
simply asked Bela about this at the press conference.

Or any tough questions for that matter. Here is a man whose tactics appear to
indicate something different than what we are being told. Where is the
investigative nature of journalism? Of all the news sources that concern
themselves with gymnastics, the mainstream press probably have little choice
but to quote whatever comes over the wire, having neither the interest nor
the resources to cover such an event. But for those who are there, and
particularly those who carry the credentials (and therefore the mantle) of
the Gymnastic press, where are the tough questions? As an editor and
publisher to the business community, if _I_ didn't ask the tough questions, I
would never sell another subscription.

Has the gymnastic press simply allowed themselves to fall into the realm of
teen fan magazines, sycophantically writing whatever dribble falls from the
tongues of coaches and athletes? I am not unsympathetic to the demographics
of gymnastics publications. But the individuals, the reporters themselves,
who are there can also submit copy to publications with somewhat different
demographics. Why not seek the truth, and strike a blow in the name of the
sport? Otherwise, we can just lay down and allow the personalities dominate
the sport, and stand by as it is gradually hollowed out by the egos, leaving
it in the long run a sad parody. Would you allow Gymnastics to go the way of
figure skating?

I am sure I am making some enemies here, and perhaps some who have it in
their power to silence my voice in this forum. But let us as a sport to some
self examination, and insure our future as a respectable endeavor for
children and adults alike.



Date: Mon, 13 Jun 94 11:03:54 BST
From: ***
Subject: Karolyi/Zmeskal

>Of all the news sources that concern themselves
>with gymnastics, the mainstream press probably have
>little choice but to quote whatever comes over the wire,
>having neither the interest nor the resources to cover
>such an event.

Yes thats probably true, theres not alot you can do with
a quote other than to quote it, creative journalism
(some might call it other things) I would say rarely
comes into play in the USA because of that big L word
which hangs over everybody.

>But for those who are there, and particularly those who
>carry the credentials (and therefore the mantle) of
>the Gymnastic press, where are the tough questions?

The specialist sports press should probably ask more
searching questions but then since there is a lack
of publications concerened with the sport then no
matter what you print its going to be bought by
a good majority of fans, if only for the reason that
its the only way of reading about the sport.

>Otherwise, we can just lay down and allow the
>personalities dominate the sport, and stand by as it is
>gradually hollowed out by the egos, leaving it in the long run
>a sad parody.

Well sports need egos if only as a way of self promotion,
its an almost symbiotic link the larger the ego the better
it is for promotion, whether this affects the sport in other
ways though is a mute point. If all we saw all day were
boring coaches who produce boring gymnasts it would affect
the sport badly, you need someone with a bit of flair
and dramtic
effect to spice things up make it more interesting.
One of the good things about Zmeskal coming back for
Atlanta 96 is its going to make it very interesting to watch
if only to see what Nunno/Miller do.

Gymnastics could go the same way as figure skating but I
cant see it happening at the moment, there is a wave of talent
coming up through the juniors in gymnastics which is
pushing the
sport onwards already the scores in womnes gymnastics
are reaching
high nines and it will probably only be a year to two
years before
we start seeing tens again. In figure skating there
isnt the same
effect its more of a retro effect, the sport is standing still
almost because there isnt any new talent coming through. There
are about 6 or 7 good skaters and thats not really enough to
promote growth of technique. In gymnastics there are so
many new styles coming from all over the place, Russia, France
even Britain is getting its act together now, that unless your
technique is improved you stand a good chance of being


Me represent anyone ? never !!!

PS Bet all you lot in America are really looking forward
to World Cup 94 starts on Friday.


Date: Mon, 13 Jun 94 10:22:03 EDT
From: ***
Subject: Karolyi/Zmeskal

How about this one? Doesn't it seem strange that Bela announces his coming
out of retirement two days before hosting the jr. elite training camp at
his ranch?



Date: Mon, 13 Jun 94 15:52:33 BST
From: ***
Subject: Rusan injured

This is probably old news. According to Marcela Fumea, the Romanian
choreographer who is coaching in London at the moment, promising
little Romanian Claudia Rusan has a serious back injury and cannot
train. That is why she hadn't been competing recently. Let's hope
she gets well soon. IMHO, she's the best up and coming young
Romanian star at the moment.



Date: Mon, 13 Jun 1994 10:00:50 +1000
From: ***
Subject: USA v Romania - after the meet

I must give congratulations to Rachele & Robyn for such good reporting.  I
also had the opportunity to see both meets.  But more than that I had a
chance to really get to know the gymnast at this meet thanks to a very good
friend taking me to the banquet and dance following the women's meet.  I
sat with 2 of the Romanian gymnast (men of course)!  Marius (World &
European champ on PH) & Nistor and their coaches, Art (UCLA - Steve had to
return for finals on Monday) Ron Howard (Mihai's coach), Fred (Temple
coach) and a judge from Japan who's name has presently escaped me were also
at the table. 

The conversation was a bit one sided until we found out that Fred & Marius'
coach both spoke French.  Then it became rather interesting.  Marius had a
torn bicep for this meet - and european championships - so we can all be
doubly impressed with the PH work - it was his rings that suffered most
from the injury  (I don't think Rachele mentioned that he was up last on PH
and up first on R).  The other Marius of late fame from Romania is now
married and his coach does not look for him to return to competition.

For all the discussion taking place on Gogan (spelling?) a couple of weeks
ago - she is a quiet little girl (according to coaches and other gymnasts
and personal observation) who has been very diappointed recently in her
gymnastics - and wanted to be left alone.  No depression, but a strategy
used by the coaches to try and keep the press away from the kids when they
are feeling frustrated.  Turns out she had an injury during a practice
before europeans and was using lots of determination to get trough the
meet.  At the dance she finally warmed up to the hosts and was out learning
the electric slide from Nadia C. and Bart C., smiling and really enjoying
herself.  All of the girls learned the electric slide - and to Jeff Lutz's
distress did it through a couple of good country songs.  <he took thier
"disrespect" with grace and considerable forgiveness".

Spoke with Ron Howard about Trent - he is doing well - working hard, and
will be at USA if Regional qualifiers go well.  Ron feels that he has a lot
more dedicaiton this time around, and more drive.  Ron is a very quiet and
humble man - I have a great deal of respect for him - especially since he
works so well with Trent  - not the easiest person to coach (this is
according to MANY coaches).    

Nistor - the other romanian gymnast I ate dinner with is a charming young
man - who has declared his strongest intentions of coming to the olympics.
His meet was not the greatest, but his dancing was fantastic, plus he is
the youngest on the squad at 20.
Lots of flares, helicoptors, back tucks, flip flops across the dance
floorfrom the Romanian guys, who really let loose on the dance floor - much
more so than the US.  Drew stayed off due to the sore ankle.  The first
time the DJ saw them on the floor he practically fell over - very
impressive.  Lots of fun. 

I notice this post is getting long, but I thought it might be nice for
people to hear about the other side of the gymnasts - the girls were just
like young girls in middle and high school - afraid to be on the floor at
first, then slowly emerging and have a great time.  Shannon did not come to
the dance.  The guys were warm and friendly - really enjoying the
opportunity to just relax and be themselves.

Any questions that you have I would be happy to try to answer and provide


PS - Kim hurt her leg and ankel at the exhibition after the men's meet.


Date: Mon, 13 Jun 94 18:51:27 EDT
From: ***
Subject: USA vs Romania - thoughts

Since Robyn gave her report, I don't want to mention things twice (for those
people who pay by the piece for e-mail) so in this note I'll just include
some things that weren't really mentioned.  E-mail me at if
you want my full detail.

I arrived in Worcester expecting slaughter (both men and women) by the
Romanians.  I was surprised at how focused the young US girls were.  Muriel
Grossfeld was working with them, along with their own coaches.  Shannon and
Marianna Webster were off with Steve (he even had them dressed in different
leos from the rest of the US team - the Miller Collection, perhaps?).  The
Romanian girls arrived and went off by themselves to bars and floor.  Miller,
as I've heard is often the case, had a shaky (at best) practice, as did the
young Romanian girls, Ghimpu and Bican.

The US guys were only moderately focused (or so it appeared) in workout, but
the Romanian guys were about the same.  Urzica did a great pommels warmup,
and Burinca looked much better in practice than competition.  Steve McCain
was the only US guy who looked really sharp for this meet.  Even so, he
seemed to only be at about 50% of potential, and looks like he can be one of
the best for the US in the next couple of years. 

I got a couple of brief interviews with the Romanians. We may not see Gogean
again until Dortmund.  Hatagan will be at Goodwill, and wasn't pleased with
her practice.  Both seemed *very* tense (this was two days before the actual
meet).   Lavinia went through practice looking like she was going to cry.

In the meet, Drew Durbin started the US off with a disaster (3 falls) for
7.45 and an injury.  I was amazed he was able to go 4 more events.  McCain
turned in a classy vault (I never knew toes could point like that - except
maybe on a certain Bilo) and clean HB.  Bagiu led the US on the other events,
but was nipped each time by Urzica.  In the press conference, Bagiu was vocal
about his disdain for NCAA gymnastics (the evening was opened by a plea for
$$$ to save the NCAA men's program). 

For those who believed Scott Keswick's prediction of a bronze for the US men
in Dortmund...according to Durbin and Blaine Wilson, they don't do ANY
compulsories until May when the college season has ended, then a couple of
days a week at most.  Bagiu also hasn't done them lately, but says he
normally works them twice a week! 

One thing I must mention again, even though Robin already did...they bring
the Romanians out, proclaim them the "Gold Medalists," give them flowers,
etc....then trot the US men out, proclaim them the "Silver Medalists," and
give them the same treatment.  You should have seen the Romanians on the side
applauding the "Silver Medalists."  I want the Bronze!!! 

Remember, if you want more detail, e-mail me.



Date: Sun, 12 Jun 94 12:19:56 EDT
From: ***@MIT.EDU
Subject: USA vs ROM women's competition

Spoiler warning:  I am about to post results from the women's competition
of USA vs ROM which will be televised next week.  If you don't want to know
in advance what happens, skip the rest of my posts.



Date: Sun, 12 Jun 94 12:56:23 EDT
From: ***@MIT.EDU
Subject: USA vs ROM women's competition

First the Final Standings:

Teams:                  Total       Vault Bars  Beam  Floor
1) Romania              194.149     49.049      48.700      47.450      48.950
2) USA                  193.261           48.611      48.450      48.175      48.025

1) Shannon Miller   (U) 39.400            9.850       9.750 9.900 9.900
2t) Gina Gogean       (R)     39.050            9.800 9.775 9.675 9.800
2t) Larissa Fontaine(U) 39.050            9.750 9.850 9.650 9.800
4) Ana Maria Bican  (R) 38.950            9.825 9.700 9.700 9.725
5) Lavinia Milosovici(R)38.750            9.875 9.825 9.200 9.850
6) Angela Ghimpu    (R) 38.687            9.812 9.375#      9.625 9.875
7) Simona Amanar    (R) 38.187            9.737 9.650 9.100#      9.700
8) Sarah Cain       (U) 37.712            9.587 9.800 9.000*      9.325
9) Amy Chow         (U) 36.912            9.687 9.725 9.150 8.350*
10) Marianna Webster(U)             9.575*      9.775 9.350
11) Nadia Hatagan   (R)             9.662#  9.750     9.250
12) Doni Thompson   (U)                   9.250*      9.700 9.650
13) Kristy Powell   (U)             9.737 9.325
14) Andrea Cacovean (R)                               9.600#

As with the men's competition, this used the 7-6-5 rule -- 7 girls
from each country, any 6 per apparatus, best 5 scores count.  The
*'d scores are the dropped ones for USA, the #'d scores are the dropped
ones for Romania.

I'll do a much more detailed account later, but figured I'd tell you who
fell, so you can make some sense of the above scores:

Sarah Cain fell on the landing of her first vault.

Doni Thompson missed the catch on a second reverse hecht on bars.

Amy Chow fell off beam on a full twisting back tuck.  She was pretty wobbly
after that.  I was very disappointed, because I really like her beam set.
(I think anyone who does twisting moves on beam is amazing!)

Milo completely missed her mount, which was to be a roundoff off the spring
board into a back handspring swingdown -- I couldn't see beam too well, but
my guess is she really messed up the roundoff, because she was *way* off, and
way too low.

Sarah Cain fell on a back handspring on beam, I believe in a bhs, layout, bhs

Amy Chow fell twice on floor, at the end of her second and third tumbling

I think Sarah Cain also fell at the end of her first tumbling pass on floor.

Well, now I really feel like I've been focusing on the negatives too much.
There was some pretty good stuff, and I didn't think this was all that many
falls for a meet where a lot of the girls were not quite first string, and
somewhat inexperienced. 

I'll be back with more details this afternoon.   I also taped Kim Z's
(second) announcement of her intended comeback, so I can type in the
text of that.  Also, I received biographical information on all the
gymnasts -- if there's someone you'd like to know more about, let me
know -- I don't think I'll type in the life stories of all the gymnasts
unless people are really interested.

bye for now,



Date: Sun, 12 Jun 94 22:54:59 EDT
From: ***@MIT.EDU
Subject: USA vs ROM women's competition

This was a fairly easy meet to watch, because there was only one thing
going on at a time.  Still, this being my first shot at this, I
sometimes had trouble getting good notes during the action, especially
on floor where I do have difficulty deciphering those flips and twists
in real time.  So bear with me for any missing info, or any miscalled
twists (hopefully I'll only ever have been off by a factor of a full
twist and not embarass myself by being off by halves, which should be
obvious due to starting/landing direction!)

I was sitting right in front of the vault run, with the vault a short
distance off to my right.  The floor mat was just beyond the vault run,
in front of me and slightly to my left.  The bars were also within easy
view, off to my right and forward somewhat.  The only thing I did not
have a good view of was beam, way at the other end of the room with
judging tables for floor between me and it.  I could see the girls on
the beam, but not the beam itself.  I was also sitting next to Mara,
who was great to meet and knew what she was doing, unlike myself.

I showed up early to check out the warmups, and was struck by how
"human" the girls really seemed.  They were also very friendly, even
between teams, cooperating and sharing the apparatus even though they
were officially scheduled to be warming up on separate apparatus.  I
felt like I'd dropped in on a gymn club and saw a bunch of girls
working out, except that these girls were somewhat more talented than
the girls I usually get to see working out.  It was nice to see that
even the big stars start slow and work up to those big tricks.

The meet was preceded by some young boys and girls (I'd guess around
ages 7-10 or so) from local clubs doing a quick demo.  It was pretty
cute, and I'm sure a big thrill for those kids.

Then Kim Zmeskal (re)announced her comeback: 

Announcer (Stormy?): ...What's going on?
Kim Zmeskal: Well, I've decided to uh come back to competition
(crowd goes wild)
A: ...What happened?
KZ: Well, I think being away from competition for about two years has
really done a lot of good for me.  After the '92 Olympics, I think my
body needed to rest, and I think mentally I needed some rest from the
competition and from the pressure of gymnastics.  And luckily I've been
able to do exhibitions and been able to tour around a bit and do things
like that because I love to perform but there was just something I sensed
was missing and I think it's just my competitiveness:  you know you don't
get the same satisfaction from exhibitions.  I guess overall I just miss
A: [asks the crowd if they'd like Kim to make a big comeback -- apparently
they would, then asks if she's chosen a coach]
KZ: (laughs) have I chosen a coach? Yes, uh Bela Karolyi has also decided
to come out of retirement.
A: ...Good luck Kim, we wish you the best of luck in '96.

(I missed a bit of the beginning of what the announcer said each time
due to crowd noise!)

The format of the meet was that two events were run at once,
alternating so that only one gymnast was performing at once.  While the
judges worked out the score, a gymnast competed on the other event.
The girls were split into "squads" so that there were always 3
Romanians and 3 Americans competing on each event at any one time.

The attendance was 4373.

The first rotation had girls on vault and bars.

On vault Fontaine, Miller and Ghimpu threw Yurchenko 1.5 twists.
Miller's were the nicest, and well landed, but on the first one she
seemed to hit the horse way to far to the front (instead of on top) but
managed to pull out a nice vault anyhow.  Her averaged score was 9.850,
which I believe was a 9.8 for the first and a 9.9 for the second.
Hatagan threw a Yurchenko half-twist, scored out of 9.9.  I'm not sure
whether Cain threw 1.5s or 0.5s -- as mentioned earlier she fell on the
landing of the first one -- she may have thrown a piked 1.5 twist or
something.  She did very well on her second vault and her averaged
score was 9.587.  Amanar threw Yurchenko double twists, which I thought were
nice except for hops on the landings.  She only scored 9.737 though, so
I guess there were problems I missed.  Despite the harder landing on the
forward-landing vaults, that double really does seem like it deserves some
extra difficulty recognition.

On bars, Bican
did a nice-looking routine, but if my notes are right, featured only
one major release (reverse Hecht).  She dismounted with a double back layout.
Powell did a very nice looking routine, with 2 releases (a reverse Hecht
plus something else, I'm not sure what), nice-looking bar transitions, and
a double(?) twisting double back tuck dismount.  She had a break when she got
stuck in a handstand near the beginning of her routine, but her score of
9.325 seemed a bit low to me.  Gogean's routine featured 2 reverse Hechts
and a double layout dismount, which was a bit low but pulled around alright.
Chow did a nice-looking routine containing a nice release move that I didn't
recognize (and couldn't write down enough details in real time to now
remember what it looked like) and also did a nice transition from high to
low bar (straddled somi down maybe?).  She may have hit her foot on the bar
during her straddle over the low bar mount (everyone did that, or a kip, it
seemed).  She did a double twisting double back tuck dismount.  Milosovici
did the nicest bars set of the group.  She did 2 big releases, one of which
was a reverse Hecht and the other involved twisting but I'm not sure what
it was.  Her dismount was a double front tuck (performed "inward" toward
the bars).  She received a 9.825 for the set.  Doni Thompson did a set with
I believe three big releases, 2 reverse Hechts and a full twist (?) but fell
on the second reverse Hecht.  She did a double back layout dismount.

In the second rotation, the remaining girls did bars, while the others started
on beam.

On bars, Ghimpu did a somewhat sloppy set which also did not seem to have
enough difficulty in it.  She bent her legs when transitioning from low to
high by "sitting" in a straddle on the low bar (twice) and often had unpointed
toes.  Sarah Cain did her best routine of the day.  She did a reverse Hecht
and at least one other release (maybe a piked Geinger?) and dismounted with
a double front tuck, I think with a half twist.  She received a 9.8. 
Amanar did a full twist release and a reverse hecht.  I believe she dismounted
with a full twisting double back tuck.  She was a bit sloppy though, and only
received a 9.65.  Fontaine did the highest-scoring bars set of the day, containing a
reverse Hecht, piked Geinger, and a nice transition to low (straddled somi
down?).  She dismounted with what I think was a full twisting double front
tuck. I thought she had one slightly messy handstand, but scored 9.850.
Hatagan performed a set that seemed to be a bit lacking in the
difficulty department.  I think she only had one major release, a piked
Geinger.  She was also a bit sloppy in her straddle (like Ghimpu).  She
dismounted with a double front tuck and received a score of 9.75.
Miller ended the rotation with a somewhat messed up routine.  She did (I
think) a pike Geinger, then hesitated in a handstand and skipped a move and
ad libbed a bit.  She dismounted with a double layout, which she seemed to
release early, but made it around ok.  She scored a 9.75

On beam, Thompson started the rotation with a very nice routine.  She began
with a front tuck mount, had a pass of back handspring, 2 layouts, a punch
front later on, a handstand, step down to back extension roll swing down.
She dismounted with 2 back handsprings (bhs, from now on) into a double back tuck, with a small
hop on the landing.  She received a 9.7 (which ended up as a tie for third
on beam, after Miller and Webster, tied with Bican).  Bican came up next and
also did a front tuck mount.  Her tumbling pass was a bit easier:  bhs, layout,
bhs.  She did a punch front with a small wobble on the landing and some
rushed-looking work low on the beam.  I think she did another bhs walkout.
She dismounted with 2bhs to a double back tuck.  I thought her routine was
a bit sloppier and easier than Thompson's, but I don't know too much about
the difficulty of the different leaps, so that may have accounted for some
of the difference.  Chow had an amazing beam set: She did a (boring,
in my opinion) planche mount, but then went on to do a tumbling pass of
bhs, layout, bhs, layout.  Then she threw a full twisting standing back
tuck, which she unfortunately fell on (because this would have been such
a great routine if only...) and that threw her a bit -- the rest of her
routine was a little more wobbly after the fall.  She did a Ruflova
(full twisting back tuck swing down), a bhs with a quarter-twist step out,
and dismounted with a twisting back layout, but I'm not sure how many twists!
She scored a 9.15.  Milosovici was up next, and totally missed her bhs
swingdown mount (she ended up with her whole body over on one side of the
beam, not straddling it at all).  As I mentioned earlier, though I couldn't
see the springboard, my guess is that she must have missed the roundoff.
Webster mounted with a press handstand style mount (I prefer the acrobatic
mounts myself).  She tumbled bhs, 2 layouts, later did a bhs 1/4 turn step
out (I think, or maybe she went down into front support, I can't read my
notes) which was a bit wobbly.  She dismounted with a roundoff double back
tuck and scored 9.775, the second best beam score of the day.  Finally Gogean
competed a set which started with a front tuck mount.  She seemed rushed on
the beam.  She tumbled bhs layout and had a major wobble (and presumably
skipped a third move).  She also had a punch front, and a standing bhs
walk out, bhs 1/4 turn down to front support and dismounted with 2 bhs to
a double back tuck.

I hope you're all not completely bored by the level of detail I've been
giving -- it's sometimes hard to know what people will be interested in.
In any case, if you are bored, you'll be getting a reprieve in my reporting
of the floor exercise, because I had a terrible time trying to watch what
people were throwing and write it down at the same time, so there are a lot
of gaps in my information.  If there is someone's exercise you'd like more
details on, let me know and I'll let you know what I got down.

The third rotation featured girls on floor (you knew the above rambling
had some reason, right?) and beam:

On floor, the Romanian girls all seemed to have "clap-along" music that
really got the crowd involved.  Of the Americans, Doni Thompson was the only
one that I noticed as having very catchy music.  Bican started us off with
a nice but not outstanding floor set featuring 2 lines of back tumbling
and 1 of front tumbling between them.  Webster did a somewhat messy routine.
She stepped out at the end of her first (back) tumbling pass, and then did
2 front tumbling passes.  Gogean competed a nice set (2 back tumbling passes,
1 front) for a 9.8.  Chow had a disasterous routine in which she fell twice.
Milo's routine (set to Hava Nagila, very catchy, has she used this music
before?) was very nice, scoring a 9.85.  All three of her tumbling passes were
back tumbling, which I appreciated as the front tumbling
we see so much of these days seems much wimpier.  Thompson had a pretty nice
routine (2 lines of back tumbling one of front tumbling) but stepped out on
her first tumbling pass (I think).  She scored a 9.65.

On Beam, Fontaine did a back tuck straddle down mount, a front walkover
which she wobbled a bit on, a *double* pirouette turn (the only one of the day),
a round off back tuck, later a punch front, had a wobble on a switch split
leap and a few minor wobbles after that.  She may also have covered a major
wobble with her dance, but I didn't have a great view of the beam, so she may
actually have been doing something intentional there.  (This was before the
switch split.)  She dismounted with a roundoff double back tuck for a 9.65.
Amanar mounted with a layout walkout out of a roundoff on the springboard.
(I like it!)  She wobbled a bit on a punch front, did a bhs and a back roll
straddle down.  She tumbled bhs, layout, bhs, layout and dismounted with
2 bhs into a double back tuck, but sat down on the landing (I think I skipped
this in my list of falls in my earlier message).  Sarah Cain did a press
handstand mount, bhs, tumbled bhs, layout, bhs but fell off on that.  She
wobbled on her punch front after that, and continued to be wobbly for the
rest of the routine.  She dismounted with a roundoff double back tuck.
Hatagan fell on a front tuck mount.  She tumbled bhs, layout, bhs, layout.
She did a very low punch front but landed it nicely.  She did a bhs 1/4 turn
down to front support, then did another one and went right around the beam
in a back hip circle (the crowd loved this -- I think it's cheesy:  it's
quite easy (the back hip circle part, not the bhs 1/4 turn) to do and really
doesn't seem like it "belongs" on beam -- it's really a bar move).  She
dismounted with roundoff to a low double back tuck, but made it around ok.
Shannon did a handstand mount with her usual pose.  She did a bhs 1/4 turn
to handstand then another 1/4 turn to swing down.  I blinked and I think she
did a back extension roll ;^)  She tumbled bhs, layout, layout.  She did a
Miller, a valdez (that's a pretty
move even if not terribly difficult -- I wouldn't mind seeing more of those
on beam) and dismounted with a roundoff to full twisting double back tuck.
She was rewarded with a 9.9.   Ghimpu ended the rotation with a routine full
of nice tumbling.
Mounted with a front tuck.  She did a bhs into a twisting back tuck.
She did bhs, layout, bhs,  then did another bhs later on.  She did a
back tuck swing down.  Her dismount was a roundoff into what I believe was
a double twisting back layout.  I'm not sure why she only scored a 9.625 --
must have had some wobbles I didn't write down.

The final rotation finished off floor and vault.

On vault Webster competed Yurchenko full (scored out of 9.8) for an
average score of 9.575.  Bican competed Yurchenko double twists -- they
were very nice and she scored 9.825.  Amy Chow did the only non-Yurchenko
vault -- I believe it was a handspring to half twisting front pike -- it
was scored out of 9.9 and she received 9.687.  Milo -- I think she only
did a Yurchenko with a half twist, but Stormy said her vault was out of
10 (she got 9.875) -- maybe it was 1.5 twist?  Powell apparently had a
great day on vault.  First she vaulted a Yurchenko full for 9.65 out of
9.8, then went for a Yurchenko 1.5 for a 8.825 (out of 10) for an average
of 9.737.  She and her coaches seemed *very* pleased that she pulled off
the 1.5 twist -- I imagine this was the first time she competed that
vault, and she did it very nicely.  Gogean finished the vaulting with a
pair of Yurchenko 1.5s.  The first was nicer, as she hit the horse nearer
the front than the top on the second one.  I believe her scores on the
two vaults were 9.825 and 9.775 for an average of 9.8.

Andrea Cacovean competed her only routine on floor.  She did three back
tumbling passes.  As far as I remember she performed cleanly, so I'm
not sure why she got a 9.6 -- she did seem to have enough difficulty.
Fontaine performed to very sexy floor music.  She 1 back tumbling pass
and 2 front.  I think her second tumbling pass only contained 2 elements
(a front handspring to a (some amount of) twisting front layout) -- don't
tumbling passes have to have three elements?  She scored a 9.8, so either
I missed something or a two-element tumbling pass is allowed.  Amanar
competed a routine containing three back tumbling passes which scored a
9.7.  Cain fell on her first tumbling pass (on a double arabian, I believe).
Her tumbling looked pretty difficult and it looks like she will have a nice
floor set if she can get consistent on it.  Ghimpu did a very nice routine.
She tumbles very high and makes it look effortless.  I think her tumbling
passes were roundoff, bhs, double arabian; roundoff, whip, whip, whip, bhs,
bhs, layout full, punch front (going back in the direction she came from);
roundoff, bhs, double twisting back layout.  I thought this was the best
floor routine I saw all day -- it scored 9.875.  Miller tumbled last.  Actually
the way the floor and vault were interspersed Miller's floor was the very
last routine of the day.  She tumbled one back tumbling pass and 2 front.
I didn't catch what all her tumbling was but it seemed like a really wimpy
set.  It scored a 9.9, which I thought was a bit generous.

At the end, the Romanians were presented with gold medals, and the Americans
silvers!  The award ceremony was attended by young girls in tuxes with tails
and their hair pulled back in tight buns.

The press conference was pretty quick, but I'll type in what I have from
that tomorrow.  I'll also put up the biographical info people have requested.



End of gymn Digest