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The following reports were submitted to's :

Men's All-Around
Women's Team Final
Men's Team Final
Women's Preliminaries (jump to Canadian Women)
Men's Preliminaries


11/01 MEN'S ALL-AROUND FINAL (Competition II)

Grant Golding (CAN)
  • R: Credited with only a 9.6 SV (a Maltese was not credited, therefore he lost .2 in SV)
  • V: BIG step to the side (ended up having one foot off the crash mat)
  • PB:  Hop on landing, SV .1 lower than expected
  • HB:  Missed toe on and then had another problem coming out of another skill. Took 3 steps on landing. (SV= 9.1)
  • FX:  Only completed a whip one-and-a-half as opposed to his normal tumbling line
  • PB: He was very happy with this routine, coming off the podium full of smiles! (SV = 9.8)

Others Competitors

  • Going into the final rotation, Sean Townsend and Paul Hamm (both USA) were right in there for the gold (particularly Sean). Unfortunately Sean fell, and he really had to fight to control his emotions (he was exceedingly angry with himself). It's a shame he couldn't regroup, because were it not for regained concentration he probably wouldn't have fallen a second time. 
  • At the time, I didn't think it was possible, but Paul Hamm's routine was even more dramatic. Coming out of his last release move (Gienger, if I recall correctly) he smashed his nose and mouth on the bar. He stayed on, with only a slight break in rhythm, and finished his routine. Only when he walked off the podium did we start to see blood gushing everywhere. He had blood on his leo, on the podium, etc. What an amazing athlete to have kept going after this devastation! There is even talk that he might have lost a tooth, but I can't confirm.
  • Feng Jing (CHN)'s pommel horse score seemed inflated. In certain sections he lost form and lacked control, yet scored 9.4+! When Ivan Ivankov's (BLR) HB score came in, putting him in second, the entire stadium booed the judges.
  • Ivankov is a very gracious competitor. Despite what had to be have been an extremely disappointing end to the competition, he reached over the barriers to sign autographs for people, pose for photos, etc., while smiling the whole time. He truly is the world champion in my eyes. He was only given a 9.9 SV on his last event, high bar. Surely a man of this caliber must have gone into the event striving for a 10.0? With a routine valued out of a 10.0, he would have won. After his score came in, an FIG official came around with a sheet for him to sign. It is unclear if this was a protest or not.

10/31 WOMEN'S TEAM FINAL (Competition IV)

  • Whether due to the lack of one touch warm ups or not, team finals for the women - much as they were for the men - were marred by an unusual number of botched routines.
  • In Australia's first rotation, Jacqui Dunn failed to remount the uneven bars in the allotted time. When she tried to remount, she was told by the head judge that she couldn't. The poor girl was absolutely devastated. Apparently the judges said "time" to Jacqui, but she didn't hear. Later, the Spaniards were quick to remount one of their athletes when the same judge yelled "time."
  • Irina Yarodskaya (UKR) endured a difficult time on balance beam, falling on her mount, experiencing long pauses between elements, and a step on dismount. Still, she is one of the most captivating athletes on this event, her style reminiscent of gymnastics from the glory years.
  • Poor Sabina Cojocar (ROM) had to wait ages to vault (due to TV cameras). In the end, she had only a small hop on UB
  • Silvia Stroescu also had a hop on landing, but was solid.
  • Natalia Ziganshina (RUS) fell on her double layout on floor exercise (she does it with a split leg, like Tatiana Gutsu in Barcelona)
  • Svetlana Khorkina (RUS) fell on both vaults, "twisting" her knees into the ground (as in Sydney).
  • Andreea Raducan (ROM) made the same uneven bars mistake as in team prelims
  • Spain had a rough time on bars. Elena Gomez made a small error, leaving her in a dead hang on the high bar. She covered well, only to then fall on her next release move. Alba Planas (ESP) showed a great bar routine, but stumbled on the crash mat on her dismount. Sara Moro may have touched her toes on a transition to the low bar.
  • Alexandra Croak (AUS) performed better on beam in team finals, suffering only a small stumble on an Onodi and a one step on the dismount. Uncharacteristically, teammate and fellow 2000 Olympian Allana Slater fell off beam. The Australians, clearly shook by their teammates' bar fiasco, performed well all things considered.
  • The Netherlands' Verona van de Leur displayed one of the best triple twists of the meet, amazing given her height! It's a shame these girls couldn't churn out performances equivalent to those in the prelims, for they were certainly capable of showing the talent and polish necessary to medal. Still, the team should be celebrated for raising Dutch gymnastics to a whole new level. 
  • Floor was challenging for the Ukrainians. Tatiana Yarosh went out of bounds on her Arabian double front on FX. Natalia Serobaba suffered two falls on floor.
  • Rachel Tidd could not repeat the wonderful beam performance she enjoyed in prelims. She fell and wobbled on her scale.


  • Injured Russian team members Elena Zamolodchikova and Yekaterina Privalova were on the podium to accept their silver medals
  • The Romanian girls were gracious winners, posed for fans and circling the arena twice (running, holding up their flowers).

10/31 MEN'S TEAM FINAL (Competition IV)

  • Korea's Kim Dong-Hwa, settling into an iron cross on rings, suffered a partial tendon rupture of his left bicep and sprained a vertebra in his neck. With the new 6-3-3, this knocked Korea - first after qualifications - right out of the medal contention.  
  • Interesting story about men's team finals.... Ukrainian coach Igor Korobchinsky approached the judging panel after Alexander Beresch (third up) had already competed, protesting the Start Value of the previous Ukrainian competitor. He was up talking with the judges for quite some time, then proceeded to run over the main judging table. The Ukrainian's score was then adjusted, the protest accepted. Interestingly, this extra .2 pushed the Ukraine ahead of France for the bronze. Without the .2, the Ukrainians and French would have tied for bronze! If it's still correct that FIG won't allow ties, then I assume they would have gone back to team prelim scores? If so, in prelims I was told that Ukraine finished .2 ahead of France. Ironic!

10/30 WOMEN'S PRELIMINARIES (Competition I)

Subdivision I

Rotation 1:

  • Tabitha Yim (USA) - very good 1 1/2 twisting Yurchenko
  • Ashley Miles (USA) - huge 1 1/2 twisting Yurchenko, but with a hop on the landing
  • Mohini Bhardwaj (USA) - double twisting Yurchenko, but stiff legged on the landing. Nonetheless, it was good enough to earn her a bearth in vault finals.
  • Heine Araujo (BRA) - big fall on beam dismount
  • Daiane dos Santos (BRA) - fall on punch front mount, second fall in the interior of the routine. Solid dismount.
  • Camila Comin (BRA) - wobble on mount, fell trying to get to a handstand. Decent landing on her dismount.
  • Daniele Hypolito (BRA) - fall on mount, balance break later on. Step on landing.

* after round 1, USA leading with over 4 points!

Rotation 2:

  • Lots of vocal support from USA girls for one another on bars. Very nice to see a cohesive team.
  • Lots of resetting of bars had to be done, in part because of Miles' height (5'7"). Interestingly though, the F.I.G. listed Ingrgida Kazdaileviciute (LTU) as the tallest, at 171 cm (approximately 1 cm taller than Miles).
  • Miles (USA) - huge tkatchev, major stumble on landing (double front).
  • Bhardwaj (USA) - beautiful Gienger. STUCK full twisting double layout dismount.
  • Rachel Tidd (USA) - beautiful set, hop on landing. 
  • Katie Heenan (USA) suffered a slight step on her dismount, but the routine proved good enough to earn her a bearth into bars finals
  • Tasha Schwikert looked like she might have caught a foot on her Hindorf, and ended hanging on the high bar by her belly and having to start swinging again.
  • Stephanie Salani (BRA) - low landing on first tumbling run on floor.
  • Brazil's FX presentation is MUCH improved, evidently because of the influence of new head coach Oleg Ostapenko, in both presentation and choice of music. Araujo is using the same music as Russia's Yelena Zamolodchikova and Comin the piece that Produnova used for ages.
  • Araujo stumbled on a double turn. Incomplete triple twist, but great presentation!
  • Hypolito has same floor as last year. Tumbled a double layout and 2 1/2 twist punch front, and was awarded a ticket to floor finals.
  • dos Santos has a new routine, and included her double layout, and Arabian double front. She received very loud cheers for this routine, probably the loudest of any routine in this subdivision. She was well rewarded, qualifying to floor event finals.
Rotation 3:
  • Beam proved to be a challenge for Team USA. Yim, who spent a long time talking to herself prior to mounting, struggled with her Onodi, falling. Bhardwaj included one-handed handspring in her balance beam routine. She lacked a full 180 degree split position in some of her elements, and her side somi was a little off-balance. Overall, the routine lacked some polish. Heenan fell on her piked double back dismount. Tidd suffered lots of balance checks, and a locked knee dismount. Luckily, Schwikert came to the rescue. Calm, and looking confident and at ease for the first time so far, she performed quite well. She did have some movement on landing, but performed well compared to her teammates.
  • Hypolito aborted her first vault attempt.
Rotation 4:
  • USA enjoyed a great warm-up on FX, showing great ability to put beam behind.
  • Bhardwaj looked like she might have been experiencing a stomach/side cramp and left warm-up early, but performed well in competition. She displayed a double layout, punch front. She is using new music (Dantzscher's 2000-2001 UCLA music).
  • Heenan was all smiles during her routine...and so were the judges! Gorgeous triple twist dismount.
  • Miles had the routine of her life. Stuck landings, full of smiles (the USA has really worked on polishing their routines!). She was going off center on her third tumbling run, but brought it back in.
  • Yim came within an inch of going out of bounds, but overall her routine was well done.
  • The audience got into Schwikert's routine immediately. She used a great full-in as well as a 2 1/2 punch layout, and looked really confident.
  • Hypolito ended bars with a full twisting double layout.
  • Araujo fell on her dismount.

USA was all smiles leaving arena. They finished almost 7 points ahead of Brazil.

Subdivision II

  • Belarus has improved markedly!
  • Oksana Chusovitina (UZB) enjoyed an excellent FX with great tumbling. On her third tumbling run, she came into her punch front low, but managed to make the appropriate corrections. Now that's experience! On bars, Chusovitina was hoping to unveil a new dismount. Unfortunately, she went into the dismount with only finger-tip control, and couldn't pull the dismount around. When asked about the stunts she planned to perform in Ghent, Chusovitina replied:

On UB a strong connection "Endo" - "Eger" at the beginning of my routine and a new, more difficult version of the ending part built around my signature exercise "Chusovitina." On vault, handspring front somersault with a twist of 360.

  • Spain's Elena Gomez is their future -- Cute girl with lots of tricks!
  • Marta Cusido started Spain off, but fell.
  • Alba Planas had balance problems on one of her jumps
  • Ester Moya had a weak hold element, and a big wobble on flight series (to two-footed layout)
  • Gomez had a shaky mount and punch front, but is a definite talent. She performed one of the better holds of the meet, and dismounted with a 2 1/2 twist
  • Sara Moro appears to be the tiniest girl of the meet, despite being a veteran now. Unfortunately, she fell on a side somi
  • Korotkova (KGZ) landed on her face doing a double back
  • Moro on FX - nice presentation and tumbling. Completed turns nicely, but landed on rear end on her third tumbling pass (coming out of punch front)
  • Gomez on FX - full in; Arabian style of music. She fell on her second tumbling run, going out of bounds. Again, I was very impressed with her
  • Anna Meisak (BLR) used Oksana Fabrichnova's music from 1991. Extremely well choreographed routine; great presentation
  • Tatiana Zharganova (BLR) is still around. She threw an Arabian double front
  • Yulia Tarasenka (BLR) performed to Pink Panther. Seems there is always at least one routine to this music at every meet!
  • Tatiana Ryharenko (BLR) scratched from floor

Subdivision IV

  • Team Canada looked great in podium training, e.g., Ashley Peckett was nailing her 1 1/2 twisting Yurchenko vaults and Crystal Gilmore was sticking many of her 2 1/2 twist beam dismounts. Sadly however, Amelie Plante sprained her ankle during podium training and would only be able to compete bars. The injury is ill-timed for Plante, who had improved tremendously over the past year. At the mock World team competition held the day the team left Canada, Plante had upgraded her vaults, was catching her Def on bars without problem, and was throwing a full-in on floor.
  • Coaching on the floor were Carol Angela Orchard and David Kenwright. Personal coaches hovered close to the boards to encourage their athletes!
  • Of all the teams in the subdivision, team Canada received loudest support. The crowd was especially appreciative of Kate's beam (her Yogi drew lots of wows!), Amelie Plante's Def on bars, and all of the girls' floor routines. 
  • Also competing in this subdvision was Bulgaria, bolstered by the addition of former Russian National team member Evgenia Kuznetsova. A crowd pleaser, Kuznetsova suffered from low start values and unfortunately failed to make any event finals. She told the F.I.G., "I have trained very hard for these Championships and hoped that I could make a final. Unfortunately, it didn't happen, but I feel I have still a lot to give to gymnastics and I hope to compete in Athens in 2004".

Rotation 1: Vault

  • Order: Jennifer Simbhudas, Crystal Gilmore, Joelle Ouellette, Ashley Peckett, Kate Richardson.
  • Everyone landed their vaults!
  • Crystal took a step
  • Joelle did a Hristakieva
  • Kate did not do the Yurchenko 1.5, but did a front pike 1/2. She scored a 9.137.

Rotation 2: Uneven Bars

  • Order: Crystal Gilmore, Jennifer Simbhudas, Ashley Peckett, Kate Richardson, Amelie Plante
  • Crystal under-rotated her double layout dismount, falling (7.300).
  • Jen lost form on her Gienger, but managed to stand up her dismount (albeit with a small hop).
  • Ashley really hit her handstands nicely!
  • Kate missed her layout Jaeger in one-touch warm-up, and again during the routine. She did, however, successfully and beautifully do the giant 1 1/2 to elgrip (well she did do the 1 1/2, but I guess I can't attest to the elgrip part since I was as far away as I could be from bars due to my seats). I think it's that extra 1/2 that caused Kate to miss the Jaeger. She was too far way from the bar, in effect doing a belly flop on the group (except, of course, the coach broke her fall).
  • Amelie caught her Def, to the "wow" of the crowd! Unfortunately, she didn't seem to get enough power on her mount (jumping off beat board over low bar) and had to take an extra swing to get going. She also had a tough time controlling a handstand on the low bar.

Rotation 3: Balance Beam

  • Order: Joelle Ouellette, Ashley Peckett, Jennifer Simbhudas, Crystal Gilmore, Kate Richardson
  • Joelle was pretty nervous looking on beam. She missed her piked front mount in warm up. Scale was wobbly. (SV=9.2)
  • Ashley fell on her her pike front mount. Score=8.287 (SV=8 something)
  • Jen experienced large balance problems on switch leap to side somi, and took a step on her double tuck dismount.
  • Crystal experienced a large break on side somi, and fell on her 2 1/2 twist dismount. It looked  like she may have missed one of her feel on take off.
  • Kate experienced huge balance problem on her tumbling series, having to grab both legs to stay on (resulting in a low SV of only 9.5, an event in which she's capable of a 10.0)! Her yogi received many applause!

Rotation 4: Floor Exercise

  • Order: Crystal Gilmore, Ashley Peckett, Joelle Ouellette, Kate Richardson, Jennifer Simbhudas (not one of Jen's stronger events, she was "hid" in the line up)
  • Crystal fell on her whip-triple twist, hit double pike, stumbled on 2 1/2 twist.
  • Ashley stumbled on one of her turns, large step on full-in. Rebounded on whip-whip-ff-double pike. Got her full SV (9.6)!
  • Joelle stumbled on her tuck jump double, but hit elsewhere. It looked like she did a whip-whip-ff-triple twist, but I could be wrong.
  • Richardson stepped out of bounds on her mount (two whips to Arabian double front). She normally does a triple twist in her routine, but may have done only a 2.5 here. She took a step forward on her double pike dismount.

Quotations from the Canadians
I had the opportunity to speak with some of the girls after team prelims:

1. Joelle Ouellette on the team:

We were as ready as we could be. At one point in training we were all injured. We all have had, or have, back problems. My rib was out of place. Ashley had a hurt wrist. Jen had a hurt ankle. Crystal and her knee, Amelie and her ankle.... We had a lot of fun. It was all fun. We pulled each other through it all. I think we're the least experienced team out there.

...and on her own performances, "For my first WC I think I did well. I'm really happy with my performances."

2. Jennifer Simbhudas, "We performed the best we could, to our ability."

3. Ashley Peckett, "It was really different up there. On our first day of podium training I couldn't do anything, not even a kip on bars." On her own performance, "I'm happy."

4. Carol Orchard spoke with the F.I.G. after the meet:

Five of our 2000 Olympians retired after Sydney and we had to rebuild our National Team. I appreciate all that our girls have done today! It will obviously take us a bit of time to get more experienced and to mature as a team - Ghent was only our first step towards this target.


Subdivision V

  • Oksana Omelianchik, 1985 co-world AA Champion, was in the audience, avidly supporting the Ukrainian team
  • This session saw huge crowd support for the Dutch team, who did not disappoint. The Netherlands qualified to team finals for the first time in history!
  • Natalia Sirenko (UKR) opened with the traditional Ukrainian mount (Arabian double mount), but fell on her second tumbling line (full-in) and stumbled on her dismount, going out of bounds. Injuring herself, Sirenko was forced to pull out (she was scheduled to go on to compete vault).
  • Holland rocked bars! Gabriella Wammes (NED) enjoyed an excellent routine on bars, but was topped by Verona Van de Leur and Renske Endel, both of whom qualified to bars event finals.
  • Tatiana Yarosh (UKR), now red haired, displayed a new floor routine. She went out of bounds on her Arabian double front, performed a triple twist as her second line, and a piked double back dismount. She stumbled mid-routine, on a turn.
  • Beam was Holland's weak spot. Monique Nuijten (NED) fell off on her punch front. Verona Van de Leur (NED) put her hands down to steady herself. (9.8 SV).
  • Monique Nuijten (NED) came back on FX, demonstrating a beautiful Arabian double front. Teammate Renske Endel (NED) was less fortunate, falling on her last pass.
  • Olga Roschupkina (UKR) put her hands down on bars. Overall, she is in much better physical condition than earlier in the year.
  • Beam proved challenging for the Ukrainians as well. Yarosh suffered two bad balance checks, and cowboyed her dismount (tucked double back). The stunning Irina Yarotska (UKR) enjoyed a solid side somi on beam, but wobbled after her Onodi Despite the difficulties, Yarotska displayed one of the more captivating performances on beam.

At the close of this subdivision, the Netherlands was in second place the USA and Van de Leur topped the AA standings with teammate Gabrielle Wammes third. A modest Verona Van de Leur, when asked if she expected to medal in the further stages of these WC, replied, " No, definitely not! I don't expect to win any.... It was a difficult competition but we've managed to perform without any major mistakes. My individual results is a big surprise for me - I didn't expect it at all...!"

Rietje Bijlholt, National coach for Holland (together with Frank Louther and Boris Orlov), reflected on his team's phenomenal performances to the F.I.G.:

We didn't expect to achieve such a high team result - we thought we can make something like 139-140.00, but not 144.159, as we did! All members of our team performed better than we thought - the majority of them are very young and only two of them have some experience. I would say that the improvement of our team came as a result of the new system of preparation we introduced in Holland two years ago. We have built three very strong gymnastics centers in the country and another three of a very good standard. This system works better. We could see the results today....

Subdivision VI

  • Russian head coach, Leonid Arkaev was nowhere to be seen, but apparently was on the floor in sort of FIG capacity. Coaching the team was Zamolodchikova's coach, Maslennikova and another man

Rotation 1:

  • Maria Zasypkina (RUS) displayed terrible double turn
  • Ludmila Yezhova (RUS) had a rough first run of triple twist and fell on piked double back (no power)
  • Natalia Ziganshina (RUS) looked great, performing a full-in. She had bad a stumble on third pass (whip triple twist), almost falling onto her butt.
  • Svetlana Khorkina (RUS) really played to the audience. The French girls in the audience went crazy over her performance! Great full-in, perfect triple twist, finished with a piked double back. 
  • Yelena Zamolodchikova (RUS) had a terrible warm-up on floor, limping off the mat prior to the end of warm-ups in obvious pain. Her badly bruised and swollen ankle considered, she performed well come competition. She stood up all tumbling passes, but went out of bounds on three passes. She left the floor in clear pain.
  • Brenda Magana (MEX) hit her nose on bars (on her Def). She had to sit out beam, dashing her chances at qualifying to the all-around.

Rotation 2:

  • Zasypkina competed only a 1.5 Yurchenko
  • Khorkina was awesome - much better than in one-touch warm ups. She scored an outrageous 9.562 for her round off 1/2 on tucked Rudi. Kudos to Sveta for somehow being able to pull it out when it counts.
  • Injured Zamolodchikova performed only a single twisting Yurchenko, but stuck it (9.000). 

Rotation 3:

  • Bars was more forgiving to team Russia.
  • Injured teammate Yekaterina Privalova (RUS) chalked bars for the team.
  • Zasypkina showed a great routine, one of the best I've ever seen from her.  Great stalders, beautiful Tkatchev, Jaeger and double front dismount with 1/2 twist dismount. 
  • Zamolodchikova stuck her full-twisting double back, but was on the verge of tears from the impact.
  • Ziganshina may have caught her heel on her Shushunova release; small hop on landing
  • Yezhova was awesome on bars. She looks physically very fit and beautiful, much stronger than at Gymnastic Challenge in May 2000. She scored only 9.300, to the dismay of the crowd.
  • Jana Komrskova (CZE) actually fell off the podium during her beam dismount, having to salute the judges from the concrete floor! The beam didn't appear to be placed correctly on the podium, with too room on the entry end and little on the dismount end. Another girl dismounted and fell, her head landing in the flower pot!
  • Magana (MEX) resurfaced to compete FX, where she unveiled a double layout punch front and She really played to the crowd! Also performed an Arabian double front, but fell on her fourth pass (2 1/2 twist). She really improved her tumbling!

Rotation 4:

  • Zasypkina had two falls on beam, and was quite distraught
  • Zamolodchikova hardly warmed up at all on beam, being tended by medical personnel who sprayed what appeared to be a numbing agent on her for what seemed like several minutes. One could smell the stuff if you were seated near beam (as I was)! Come time to perform, she fell off on her flight serious, and was in obvious pain.
  • Crowds of school girls raced down to the beam area while Khorkina was on beam, with point-and-shoot cameras in hand. Many flashes went off during Khorkina's routine, and perhaps as a result Khorkina suffered a number of balance checks. Her start value was assessed at only a 9.2. After the routine was judged, one of the beam judges actually got up out of her seat, and came into the stands to reprimand the girls! 
  • Ziganshina had a large balance check on her mount (9.7 SV).
  • Yezhova rescued Russia on beam. She stuck her two and a half twist dismount cold. She did have a bit of a pause in her Onodi series. She got a 10.0 SV! The meet emcee initially announced Russia as placing third up to this point, but then had to retract his statement once her 9.612 on beam pushed Russia past Spain.
  • Top vaulter Brenda Magana (MEX) didn't seem to have a great run or great contact with the vault, sitting down her vault.

Khorkina reflected on the competition during the press conference:

This competition was as any other major competition! It's never easy. This was only the beginning of the WC - there are team finals, individual AA finals, and apparatus finals to come. We tried to do our best today, and we shall try to do even better in the team finals. We are ready to fight....

Subdivision VII

  • The French girls received the loudest support this subdivision. In fact, I'd say the crowd support for these girls was the loudest the entire meet. The Romanians couldn't hear their floor music in Atlanta, and must have had a difficult time here in Ghent. Especially strong was the support for French darling Ludivine Furnon on floor, who is still using the same routine that won her gold at the 2000 European Championships.
  • It was very interesting to see how the Romanian girls worked so cooperatively, preparing the bars, beam, vault for one another. The team enjoyed a satisfying competition on all but bars. Carmen Ionescu (ROM) couldn't seem to get bars "right." She suffered two falls, one of which was because she hit her foot making the transition to low bar. Remounting, she proceeded to hit her foot again but stayed on. Andreea Raducan (ROM) toppled the wrong way over on low bar and had to cover. Head coach Octavian Belu reflected during the press conference:

I am satisfied with the performances of our team tonight - they did very well on FX, V, and BB and had some problems on the UB. The UB is by tradition our weakest apparatus and I think that the gymnastics specialists in Romania must analyse this problem carefully and find out a new system of preparation of our gymnasts on this apparatus. The important thing is, of course, the team final tomorrow. I am not a supporter of the newly introduced competition format for the team finals 6-3-3. Now we must think very carefully and make a decision - who will these three gymnasts per apparatus be....Tomorrow's competition is a different story compared to today's....

Subdivision VIII

  • Allana Slater (AUS) has really come into her own, looking happy and confident. Coming off the beam podium, she ran to give  head coach Peggy Liddick a hug!
  • Sadly, Alexandra Croak (AUS) fell off beam and was extremely upset with herself, looking almost like she might cry during her beam routine. She had a better time on floor, where she now uses Irina Baraksanova's (member of 1985 World Team for USSR) old FX music.

10/29 MEN'S PRELIMINARIES (Competition I)


  • Team Canada competed in subdivision 8, beginning on PH. A protest was made on behalf of Ken Ikeda's start value on pommel horse, but I am not sure what became of this.
  • The guys were shaky on rings, but did well considering the injuries plaguing multiple team members. One exception: A terrific 9.425 by David Kikuchi.
  • Overall, vaults were quite good, with most of the men counting scores in the 9s. 
  • The team had a tougher time on parallel bars, however. 
  • Ken Ikeda injured his wrist during training, when his grip caught and "hung" on bars. Due to the injury, Ken was originally slated to sit out PB, but stepped in to help the team. Alexander Jeltkov fell on a side straddle kip on PB. Only Grant Golding (9.137) and Richard Ikeda (9.062) broke into the 9s. 
  • The Canadian have their toughest time on HB, oddly one of their better events in past years. Nobody was able to break into the 9s. Alexander Jeltkov, high bar medallist at the 1999 WC, fell on Gaylord II. He whacked his chin, but fortunately is okay. Other "big name" HB men also took themselves out of the race for event finals, e.g., Jesus Carballo (ESP), Aljaz Pegan (SLO) fell on his layout Jaeger, and Jani Tanskinen (FIN) did few release moves.
  • The team regrouped to post strong scores on floor. Alexander Jeltkov posted a 9.412, and Scott Lang a 9.225 (a formal protest was lodged against Scott Lang's score on FX, and accepted). 
  • After all prelim sessions, Canada finished 12th, equally the 1985 World team's best-ever finish. Go Canada!
  • Individually, Grant Golding qualified to the all-around competition. Congratulations, Grant! 


  • Lee Sun-Sung (KOR) broke his hand during prelims
  • Sean Townsend's (USA) 9.787 on PB was the highest score of day 1 of prelims
  • France qualified to team finals for the first time in history. 
  • Marc Touchais, National coach for France's men's team, on his team's performance:

    We've put our stake down to young gymnasts with potential and this competition proved we were right. Today our team went through the competition with some small mistakes, which they usually don't do at home, but still, they did very well! Our boys are young and don't have much experience. This is the first time ever France qualifies for a World Team Final, therefore we don't have anything to lose - we can oly win. We shall enter the Finals without complexes!...Whatever place would make us happy - as we are at the moment of time!

  • Marc Touchais, National coach for France's men's team, when asked if he sees a new team leader in Florent Maree:

The answer is Yes and No! He is still lacking consistency and is often challenged by the other three young members of the team. But, as you well know, this is good for building a strong team....

  • Most impressive were the three Cubans, all of whom qualified to the all-around: Eric Lopez (2nd), Abel Drigg (15th), and Charles Leon Tamayo (20th). "It's a pity that we don't have a full team here, but we are happy that the three of us have made the Individual All-Around final," Lopez told the F.I.G.
  • The Romanians finished a disappointing fourth place in team preliminaries. "Glad it's over! In the Finals we shall fight for a team medal!" Dragulescu told the F.I.G. Urzica echoed similar thoughts:

With the new code of points and the new routines we have, this competition was hard for us, much harder than the competitions in recent years. We could have done better today - three of our team members committed mistakes, but we hope to do our besting [sic] in the Team Finals."

  • Russia suffered several injuries during podium training, struggling to live up to expectations in prelims. A dejected Alexei Nemov told the F.I.G. that his team's 217.384 "would hardly be enough to rank the team in the top eight after the qualifications are over...." He further explained:

...our bad luck with the draw and the injuries have hit the team. We found ourselves in a situation where the newcomers in the team had to take huge responsibility. Nevertheless, they did their best. I would the content of our routines, according to the new Code was OK. we all just missed this last ingredient that gives security and brilliance of our performances....

Russia did go on to qualify to team finals, where further difficulties bestowed them....


  • Three sets of twins competed at the 2001 World Championships. On the women's side, from Poland came Malgorzata and Joanna Skowronska and from Norway, Katherine and Julie Hannsen. Mario and Alen Dimic (SLO) competed on the men's side.
  • Three Carballo men were on the floor in Ghent: Brothers Jesus Carballo (25) and Manual Carballo (19) competed for Spain, while father Jesus Carballo Senior coached the women.
  • Three gymnasts celebrated birthdays in Ghent: Ana Parera (ESP; 10/28/1985), Stephani Salani (BRA; 02/11/1983) and Tabitha Yim (02/11/1985).
  • IOC President Jacques Rogge presented the very first IOC Fair Play Award to Russian Trampolinist Irina Karavaeva during the closing ceremony. At the 2001 World Trampoline Championships, a serious judging mistake was made, giving Karavaeva the gold medal. Karavaeva took it upon herself to correct the situation, exchanging medals with Ana Dogonadze (GER). "I very much regret the mistake of the judges at the World Championships in Denmark. I consider that it is necessary to correct this mistake and I decided to give the gold medal to my friend Ana Dogonadze from Germany in the spirit of friendship and fair-play," Karavaeva explained. The medal exchange was made in a special ceremony held in Akita at the World Games. The IOC, inspired by Karavaeva's act, created a new award: The IOC Fair Play Award. The award was presented to Karavaeva during the closing ceremonies of the 2001 World Artistic Championships. 
  • Included among the various judging panels were several key names from the past, including Oksana Omelianchik (1985 co-World Champions), Nelli Kim (1979 World Champion), Anca Grigoras (1973 European bronze medallist on BB), Lubov Burda (two-time Olympian), James Hartung (1984 Olympic gold medal team member)
  • Statistics on female competitors:
    • Number of gymnasts: 199
    • Number of teams: 27
    • Number of individuals: 30
    • Number of federations: 60
    • Oldest gymnast: Lotte Berger (NOR; 12/12/1974)
    • Youngest gymnast: Alexandra Korotkova (KGZ; 01/30/1986), who was disqualified for "non respect of the age limit." According to the Technical Regulations (Regn 5.3), a gymnast must be age 16 in the year of the competition. In an F.I.G. press release, it was stated that Korotkova's results would be removed from the official results. 
    • Tallest gymnast: Ingrgida Kazdaileviciute (LTU) at 171 cm
    • Lightest gymnast: Sara Moro (ESP) at 30 kg
    • Average age: 17.5 years

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