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Archive: September, 2001

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Elfi Schlegel

The Canadian gymnastics family has gotten a little bigger. Elfi Schlegel, one of the great names in the history of Canadian gymnastics, and husband Marc Dunn, a 1996 Olympian in beach volleyball, are thrilled to announce the birth of their first child, Olivia Frances Dunn, born September 19th. According to Schlegel, now a commentator for NBC Sports and owner of Schlegel's Gymnastics, "we're all doing very well, and getting used to staying up late at night!" Schlegel also notes that her daughter has all the makings of a champion gymnast, although volleyball is also a possibility if she outgrows her mom's favourite sport.

Schlegel, who won a bronze medal for Canada on vault at the 1980 FIG World Cup, will be on hand for next weekend's GYMROCK event to provide colour commentary for the television production. Also making appearances as judges at GYMROCK are 2001 world championship head coach Carol Angela Orchard and 2000 Olympic judge Susan Harris.

To view a photo of Olivia Frances, click here. Photo is copyright Elfi Schlegel, 2001.


Teri Gibson, added to the GYMROCK roster

After a second round of auditions, held yesterday at Gymnastics Mississauga, GYMROCK organizers have announced the final two competitors for next weekend's event. Making the cut was Burlington Gymnastics' Teri Gibson, the fifth-ranked gymnast in the country and national silver medallist on the floor exercise, along with 13 year-old Katie O'Donnell of Gymnastics Mississauga, younger sister of 1996 Olympian Shanyn MacEachern. They will join the seven other competitors announced earlier this week, including 2000 Olympian Julie Beaulieu, whom Gymn.ca had a chance to catch up with during training yesterday. Check back with Gymn.ca for a full-length interview with Beaulieu early next week.

"Gold" seats for both Saturday and Sunday are sold out, but "silver" seating is still available. Once "silver" seating sells out, Gymnastics Mississauga will release $4.00 rush bleacher seats adjacent to the main seating area. Please consult the GYMROCK website for further information.


Performance-oriented gymnastics is coming to Canada with a brand new style of competition, known simply as "GYMROCK". The brainchild of Gemini award winning producer Michael A. Charbon of MAC Productions Inc., GYMROCK is an opportunity for fans to enjoy some of Canada's best female gymnasts as they perform floor exercise routines designed to upbeat and modern music, with $6,000 in prize money on the line. The event will be televised nationally by traditional sport networks TSN, RDS, and new networks WTSN and The Classic Sports Channel.

GYMROCK competitor
Julie Beaulieu

The GYMROCK roster, announced today, provides an interesting glimpse into the past, present, and future of Canadian gymnastics. Headlining the show is 2000 Olympian and 1999 national all-around champion Julie Beaulieu, who is retired from formal gymnastics competition but is a rising star in the sport of diving. Joining Beaulieu is 2000 Olympic Trials participant and former national team member Aubrey Taylor of Burlington Gymnastics. Rounding out the GYMROCK field are some of Canada's top young athletes, including Burlington's Rhiannon Banda-Scott, GymElites' Karine Lemay, Gymnastics Mississauga's Emily Cercado, and Ashley Sportum of Oakville. The current field is rounded out by reigning national junior tumbling champion Amanda Dellapente of Brampton, Ontario. Two other athletes will be named to the competitive roster after a training and rehearsal session this Wednesday.

GYMROCK will take place on October 6 and 7 at Gymnastics Mississauga. Doors open at noon each day, and taping begins at 1 pm. Fans are encouraged to purchase tickets ($5 and $7 per day) through Gymnastics Mississauga at 905 270-6161. For further information, please consult the GYMROCK website at www.gymrock.com.


In light of the tragic events that have unfolded in the United States this past week, the upcoming Pan American Championships, originally scheduled for next weekend in Cancun, Mexico, have been postponed.

The fate of the event, which was to showcase many of the top artistic and rhythmic gymnasts of the Americas, currently hangs in the balance. Although the meet has been tentatively rescheduled for the first week of October, USA Gymnastics, the governing body of the sport in the United States, has indictated they will not be participating in the event, regardless of the change in date.

Canada was to be represented at the competition by a contingent of top junior artistic gymnasts, as well as a top rhythmic team comprised of Ritmika's Mary Sanders, Etobicoke Olympium's Kristy Clark, and Roxana Cervantes from Club Adagio in British Columbia. The delegation was rounded out by coach Mimi Masleva, judge Monika Alde, and Rhythmic Gymnastics Canada's Adrienne Arnold as Head of Delegation.

Gymn.ca will provide further details on the rescheduling of the Pan American Championships as they become available. Many thanks to Adrienne Arnold for providing this information.


Canadian gymnasts travelling across the North American continent during yesterday's tragic terrorist attacks on the United States have all been accounted for, Gymnastics Canada reports.

Two delegations of athletes and coaches either failed to depart or were left stranded in a number of cities across Canada and the continental United States when the skies were cleared by aviation officials yesterday morning.

The first delegation, including Saskatchewan's Lisa Pattison and coach Chris Baraniuk was en route to Japan for the prestigious International Junior competition, but were grounded in Vancouver where they remain at this time.

The second delegation of athletes was comprised of junior gymnasts and their coaches from across the country who were scheduled to train and compete against teams from the United States over the coming days. While all athletes and coaches are safe, Calgarians Kylie Stone and coach Stephania Ilesiu are currently in Salt Lake City, Utah, while Ottawa Gymnastics' Heather Purnell, Melanie Banville, and coach Tobie Goreman, as well as national team coach Andrei Rodionenko are returning to Canada from Detroit.

Canada has not changed plans to send a full delegation to the Pan American Championships, taking place in Cancun, Mexico, at the end of the month.

It has also been reported that Rob Doyle, a finalist for Canada on high bar at the 1992 world championships, witnessed the events of yesterday morning from the streets of Manhattan. Doyle had been expected at his workplace in the doomed World Trade Center, but arrived for work late, keeping him out of the complex at the time of the attacks.

Gymn.ca would like to extend sincerest condolences to those who suffered personal loss in this tragedy, and remind all our American friends of our support in this darkest hour.

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