Elena Gurova (URS)

Photo by OEFC

1984 DTB Cup
1984 Druzhba (Junior Friendship Tournament): 1st T, 2nd AA
1985 Druzhba (Junior Friendship Tournament): 1st AA
1985 Champions All: 9th AA
1987 USSR Championships: 4th AA
1987 Chunichi Cup: 1st AA
1987 Moscow News: 3rd AA, 1st V, 2nd UB, 2nd BB
1987 USSR Cup: 2nd AA, 3rd UB, 2nd BB, 1st FX
1987 World Championships: 2nd T
1988 World Sports Fair
1988 USSR Cup: 10th AA

The majority of these results were compiled
from information found at Gymn Forum

Elena Gurova never made an Olympic team, and competed only in one World Championships. Nevertheless, Gurova's name is one of the most frequently cited among fans of gymnastics from the 1980s...and no wonder! Gurova threw skills like you wouldn't believe. At the tender age of 12, Gurova became the first to perform a double-twisting layout Yurchenko. Gurova's was not just a trickster either, she had grace beyond her years. The daughter of a Russian ballet teacher, Gurova seemed to have it all...she just needed to turn age-eligible for major meets!

In 1987, Gurova made the Soviet's World Championship team (along with Shushunova, Boguinskaia, Baitova, Omelianchik, and Tuzhikova). For only the second time in World Championship history (the first time being in 1979), the Soviets lost the team medal - and much to their disappointment, to their biggest rivals, the Romanians. Disheartened, the Soviet girls returned home, vowing to stand atop the podium at the 1988 Olympics in Seoul. Sadly, half of these girls never got the chance. At the 1988 USSR cup, Gurova, Tuzhikova and Omelianchik failed to qualify for the Soviet Olympic team (although Omelianchik WAS named the first alternate).

Some of the more avid supporters of Gurova and/or Omelianchik have alleged that these three were kept off the Olympic team as punishment for the team's loss at the 1987 World Championships. Whether they were or not, the undeniable fact remains that many talented girls, not just these three, were worthy of an Olympic experience and were denied a berth on the Olympic team. The Soviet national team was extremely deep in talent at the time, and any choice that the Soviets could have made would have been with met with some disappointment.

Following her dismal placement at the 1988 USSR Cup, Gurova faded out of sight, presumably retiring. According to a number of posts on the 80s Tribute message board, Gurova had a short sting with judging around 1992-1993, but has since left the sport completely. She is believed to be working as an office employee (perhaps a typist) in St. Petersburg, Russia.

Elena Gurova was born on December 30, 1972.

. This page was created June 2, 1999.

 

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