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The FIG Trampoline Newsletter No. 4 / September 2001
After many highlights of this years, competitions are already history, we like to give you an update on the work of the Technical Committee and the schedule of the near future:
1. Judges Courses
Since the Intercontinental Course in Bratislava, courses had been held in 15 different countries, with 3 more to follow in October and November. 37 member federations have sent their candidates to the courses.
TC members who have conducted the courses were of the opinion that, in the vast majority of cases, both courses and candidates had been well prepared, with a large number of passes. It had also been evident that in a number of cases, candidates had not been as well prepared, but on the whole, these were in the minority. All tutors had received excellent hospitality and wished to thank their host for this.
2. World Cups
The first World Cup in the series 2001 – 2002 was held in Hanover / GER the host city of the 2003 World Championships.
For the first time ever we used a “soft version” of a Knockout Final in Individual Trampoline, which means after one round the last 4 gymnasts competed for places 1-4. But it was felt that it was not the real thing. Athletes, audience, coaches and judges were not satisfied; only on TV (live production for 1 1 hours) did it appear to go well. However, the TC decided to continue with the K.O. finals for the next two World Cups in Espinho, POR and St. Petersburg, RUS. Both competitions will be run with the full Knockout version for Trampoline Individual and Tumbling. It was also agreed that the format for each of the next two World Cups would be as follows:
For Tumbling it was decided, that for the K.O. finals the athletes must not fill in new competition cards, so that they can decide on their tactics. Of course no skill can be repeated during the first two rounds of the final. But the last two athletes who decide the places 1 and 2 can repeat skills or a pass from the previous rounds. After St.Petersburg, the TC will decide on the future of these kind of finals. However, nothing will be decided without input from the athletes.
In the meantime, the FIG Executive Committee decided upon which federation would host the next World Cups in the present series:
The most outstanding achievement of these championships was the 5th individual trampoline title won by Alexandre Moskalenko RUS. This was a magnificent effort by Sasha and he and his coach are to be heartily congratulated.
Unique to the history of Trampolining, a Gold Medal was handed back and the results and title were altered one month later. What happened? Two days after the conclusion of the Championships, the German National Coach Ute Luxon-Pitkamin informed the TC President, that she had realised, after viewing the ladies individual final of the championships, on a private video, that Irina Karevaeva RUS had infact completed a 14.4 difficulty (her normal high difficulty routine) as opposed to the 14.6 difficulty routine, as shown in the results of the Final.
The TCP immediately telephoned the OC in Odense, as well as the TC members staying for the WAG´s., requesting them to check the official video from the Finals. The outcome was, that the 14.4 difficulty score was the correct one, and that an error had obviously been made. One of the difficulty judges, also staying for the WAG`s in Odense, could prove, with his notes of all finalists, that the difficulty judges had also the difficulty score of 14.4.
So, the only possible error that could have occurred was of a typing one, where the difficulty judges had entered the score into their machine. One could say that this was a normal human error, but with what consequences! This small difference would have made Anna Dogonadze-Lilkendey GER a World Champion with 1/10 of a point in front of Irina Karavaeva, instead of 1/10 behind, with the silver medal.
We can only guess why no one (athletes, coaches, judges) realised this mistake. Certainly, one reason was the fact that on the Longine Scoreboards, the difficulty score is only shown for a few seconds, together with the performance scores, and after the total score is flashed. Another reason was that none of the difficulty judges had made any errors throughout the whole two days of competition.
When TC member, Nikolai Makarov, telephoned Irina three days after the Championships to inform her of the error, she was also very surprised, because up until then, she had not even seen the results list. If she had done, she would have realised the mistake at once. Irina´s immediate reaction was, as one would expect of the great sportswomen she is, was to change medals with her friend Anna, who of course would be the real World Champion 2001. This was reported through Nikolai Makarov to the TC President.
However, as is known by all, after the medal ceremony, nothing can be changed!
The next step was for the TC President, Horst Kunze, to report the matter to the FIG and request the FIG President, Bruno Grandi, as an exception to the rule, that the results and the medals be exchanged:
a) because the mistake was owing to a fatal typing error
One month later, another unique episode in the history of FIG took place. In a short ceremony, prior to the FIG Finals at the World Games in Akita / JPN, Irina expressed her wish once more, in a small speech, that she wished to hand over the gold medal to Anna, which showed her great fairness. In his reply, President Grandi said that he was pleased to announce, that for the first time in FIG history, results and medals of World Championships would be changed. He then presented the Gold Medal to the 2001 World Champion Anna Dogonadze-Lilkendey, GER and the Silver Medal to Irina Karavaeva, RUS and the anthem of Germany was played.
We in the TC are very thankful about the decision of the FIG Executive Committee and would also like to express our feelings for Irina Karavaeva, who showed with her gesture, what a great sportswomen she undoubtedly is. This, apart from her outstanding performances over the years, which earned her three individual World Titles and the Olympic Gold Medal. Thanks also to Anna Dogonadze-Lilkendey, who never complained and would have accepted any decision.
The results of World Championships 2001, Odense / DEN, Women Trampoline are now confirmed as follows:
3. World Age-Group Games, Odense DEN
The World Age-Group Games (WAGs) were held in the city of Odense DEN in the week immediately following the World Championships, in the same venue.
The WAGs are an important part of trampoline disciplines, in as much that it is used in the development of our young athletes, as well as a much needed source of income for OCs running the world championships the week prior.
Owing to the popularity of the event, restrictions are placed on entries, with federations being permitted to enter a maximum of 80 athletes in total for the various age-groups. The Odense event attracted some 1300 entries from 33 countries.
TC Vice-Presidents Filipe Carvalho and Nickolia Makarov, assisted by TC members, Pat Henderson and Tatiana Shuskya were the TC representatives in Odense for the event, and Filipes report indicated that the Games were very successful.
Note: At their meeting in Odense, the FIG Executive Committee decided, that also future WAGs will be held under the authority of the FIG and the Trampoline TC being responsible for the rules and regulations..
4. World Games, Akita JPN
The World Games is a multi-sporting international event, supported by the IOC, and held every four years. Gymnastics sports are represented by ACRO, AER, RG and TRA (Synchronised Trampoline, Tumbling and DMT). The 2001 event was held in Akita JPN, in the North West of the country.
Arrangements for the various sports were excellent, although there were a few hiccups initially trying to get the right people into the right hotel. There was also problems with equipment, and especially the tumbling track, with the TC President spending a great deal of his time endeavouring to secure a replacement track, but to no avail. One can say that over the years, the TC President received more complaints from coaches and gymnasts about this tumbling track, than any other piece of equipment. As can be imagined, the OC were quite embarrassed about the situation, but could do nothing. Suffice to say that the TC have discussed the situation at their meeting in Akita, and steps have been put in place to ensure that there is no repetition.
Despite the problems with the tumbling track, our competitions ran well, thanks to the efforts of the OC, the Technical Delegate Takeshi Ueyama and TC members present; as well as the understanding of our athletes and coaches, for which we thank them most sincerely. Judging was of a high standard, with only one small error being discovered in DMT. This was quickly put right.
The competition format of Trampoline and ACRO alternating during qualifying rounds and finals, which was prepared by both TC Presidents and the Deputy Secretary General, came out as a great show for the audience.
Akita will long be remembered for a number of things, like the outstanding welcome party for all athletes and officials and in particular the Typhoon that hit Japan during the Games. Tokyo was severely damaged with a number of casualties resulting amongst the population. A number of sporting events had to be curtailed or cancelled altogether. However, we, the gymnastics family, were more fortunate, although we had to leave Akita somewhat sooner than expected by bus right after competitions owing to the possible cancellation of all flights and trains to Tokyo during the next day.
5. 6th Goodwill Games, Brisbane AUS
Developed in concept following the Olympic boycotts of 1980 and 1984, the Goodwill Games are an international multi-sport invitational event where the world’s best athletes come together to prove their abilities on the world stage. Athletes are invited to participate, based on rankings and performance in major international competitions, including Olympic Games, World Championships and past Goodwill Games. For the Brisbane event – the first held outside Russia or the United States of America –1300 athletes, from 14 sports, were invited to compete, in a finals only competition, in sports ranging from Athletics to Weightlifting and from Trampoline to Ice Skating. The 14 official sports were:
Athletics, Basketball, Beach Volleyball, Boxing, Cycling (track) Diving, Figure Skating, Artistic Gymnastics, Rhythmic Gymnastics, Surf Lifesaving, Swimming, Trampoline, Triathlon and Weightlifting
Gymnastic disciplines were held in the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre, with competition days being 29th, 30th 31st Aug and 1st and 2nd Sep 01. Trampoline finals were held on the opening day of the Games, Tuesday 29th Aug, in conjunction with women’s vault and floor exercise, and men’s pommel horse and floor exercise. In trampoline, the women’s 1st voluntary exercise alternated with women’s vault, which resulted in a lengthy wait between routines at times, with 1 x trampoline exercise, followed by 2 x vaults. However, for the final of the women’s event, there were no disruptions. The men had no problems at all; except for the length they had to wait – 1 x hour between their 1st Vol and final routine.
As expected, Alexandre Moskalenko RUS was the clear winner in the men’s event, with Anna Dogonadze GER completing a double victory over the Olympic Champion, Irina Karaveava RUS, within the space of four weeks.
Australia Gymnastics acted as host Organiser for the gymnastic competitions and provided all technical equipment/assistance. From all accounts, they did an excellent job (as in Sydney) and are to be congratulated.