Irene Abel (GDR)

Irene Abel was born on February 2, 1953 in Berlin, East Germany. She began training at the SC Einheit gymnastics club in Dresden. She made her international debut at one of the Druzhba (Junior Friendship Tournament) meets, where she won the beam final. After this she was sent to train at one of the more prestigious clubs, SC Dynamo in Berlin.

Irene was one of the major players on the East German Olympic team, contributing to her team's silver medal and placing 11th in the all-around competition. With the Olympics in Munich that year, Irene had the relatively rare opportunity to compete in the Olympics in her own backyard.

In 1973, Irene competed in the 1973 Chunichi Cup, placing 5th AA behind the likes of Nelli Kim and Elvira Saadi. The 1974 World Championships was one of Irene's last competition. In Varna she won a team silver and placed 14th in the all-around.

After retiring Irene started coaching at Dynamo. After the fall of the Berlin wall she and her family moved to what had been the Western occupied portion of Berlin. She currently trains her daughter, Katja Abel, one of Germany's top gymnasts.

Many thanks to Richard for relaying this information!

. This page was created January 13, 2001


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