Archive for the ‘Pictures’ Category
A few updates from my favorite national team:
Remember Corina Ungureanu? She was a member of the Romanian gymnastics team in the 1990s, and was a member of the 1997 and 1999 world champion Romanian teams. She later retired in 1999 due to a spinal cord injury, and then did a number of naked things, including posing in Romanian Playboy (which she did again earlier this year), and doing gymnastics routines topless on a Japanese DVD.
Ungureanu is now 28, and she now lives in England, where she is coaching on the Isle of Man. And, according to this Libertatea article, she is now training bars, beam and floor herself, and recently competed in an internal competition on beam and floor. Remember, she was the 1998 European floor champion.
Check it out:
Awards for Dragoi and Tamirjan
Gabriela Dragoi was named Athlete of the Year for Buzau county, according to this article in Stiri Locale Bucuresti.
In other heartwarming Dragoi news, a businessman named Costel Bucur is helping out her family (she has five siblings) by helping to rebuild their house and donating things for Christmas. Very cool. See article here.
Ana Maria Tamirjan was also honored recently by the Prahova Directorate for Sport, which encompasses Ploesti. Tamirjan is second in the competition for best athlete of Prahova county, with first place going to someone who does judo.
2008 was a hard year, in which we had many injuries, which makes this even more satisfying. [In 2009], on a person level, I’d like to come back with medals from Europeans and Worlds. Otherwise, I hope for good health and the ability to work hard.
Tamirjan is recovering from a cracked femur, and consequently has refused to take off more than one day for Christmas!
See Pro Sport article here.
Andreea Acatrinei won the Best Athlete award for Hunedoara, with Ceralesca Patrascu second. Steliana Nistor won for Sibiu.
And, naturally, what Romanian update would be complete without something about Sandra Izbasa? She is currently in Belgium for an exhibition (see here). She’ll be performing on beam and floor. Dariya Zgoba will supposedly also be there. (In other exhibition news, Chellsie Memmel is in Holland for similar reasons.)
Nadia Comaneci did a new interview with Jurnalul National, complete with ridiculously cute pictures of the DNA-gifted child of theirs.
Honestly, Comaneci bores me these days. Also, like many currently competing gymnasts, she wears too much make-up. The one tidbit I did find interesting: she had Thanksgiving with Geza Poszar (despite the fact that Poszar corroborated Trudi Kollar’s stories of abuse by Bela Karolyi, a dispute that Comaneci clearly wants to stay out of), who knows George Clooney! (Comaneci also mentions that she is still in touch with Bela and Marta.)
Otherwise, the interview is a yawner. They don’t even ask her to comment on the recent Olympics! If I had been doing this interview, I might have started with that, instead of chatting about her friendship with bodybuilder Joe Weider and the 1976 Olympics.
Anyway, what is going on in this picture??? You’ll notice that if you glance at it, it looks like Bart Conner doesn’t have legs.
Today, Globoesporte published an article about how Oleg Ostapenko is returning to the Ukraine, leaving Irina Ilyashenko in charge of the burgeoning dynasty they created together.
In fact, according to this press release, Ostapenko has accepted an offer to be the new junior women’s coach for Russia — this despite the fact that earlier reports had him turning down an offer from the Russian Gymnastics Federation. (Edit: IG has a short story in English.)
This new move has Ostapenko working alongside Alexander Alexandrov, the new Russian women’s head coach, who is himself returning to Russia after fifteen years in the United States.
Everyone was psyched when Ostapenko announced he was returning to the Ukraine. At the time, Igor Korobshinsky, the head men’s coach, said that Ostapenko’s decision was the beginning of the return of all of Ukraine’s best athletes.
This is a huge coup for the Russians. This is a guy who coached Viktoria Karpenko, Natalia Kalinina, Tatiana Lysenko, even Lilia Podkopaeva.
On the other hand, disaster strikes for the Ukraine. The Russians start their training camp on January 8th, and I can’t imagine the Ukrainians would be too far behind. That gives them less than a month to find a replacement for Ostapenko.
In the longer-term, after their disappointing performance at the Olympics, the Ukrainians were really looking to find a new way. I’m hoping it will still happen, because I do love them. But they need a strong coach and, more importantly, a good advocate for better training conditions and equipment. Otherwise, could Ukraine wind up going the way of other Soviet states and satellites, like Belarus and Hungary, that have seen their stock fall dramatically in the past 20 years?
Olympian Andreea Acatrinei, who trains at Deva of course, was named athlete of the year for the province of Hunedoara. Ceralesca Patrascu, who won the award in 2006, came in second. See the Pro Sport article.
Steliana Nistor won the best athlete award for Sibiu this year. (Article in Pro Sport.)
I don’t remember exactly when it was than I last discussed this shirt of Nastia Liukin’s, but did I mention I dislike it?
Although she is gorgeous in recently-printed WWD photos, I’ve got to say that her Vanilla Star collection is not to my taste. And apparently Yahoo! doesn’t appreciate it either: she made their OMG! What Were They Thinking? list. I’d like to thank Yahoo! for confirming my judgment of this outfit.
I don’t understand what this shirt is supposed to communicate. Love eating peace? Love eating peace, the bitter taste of which is masked by rose? I don’ t know.
It certainly is in the vein of Shawn Johnson’s peace-obsessed product line for GK, which is literally called “Peace, Love, Shawn Johnson” (see my post here). Ironically, one of Liukin’s t-shirts designed for VS reads “Peace, Love, Us.” We know they’re besties; is this some kind of peace-love conspiracy?
To be clear, I understand that I, a 26-year-old New Yorker, am not exactly the target audience. Still, I reserve the right to comment.
These are some great photos of the Chinese Olympians from a Chinese magazine (I don’t do Chinese, so I can’t translate the text, maybe someone else will be able to?):
We’ve got He Kexin, Li Shanshan, Yang Yilin, and Jiang Yuyuan.