I am sick of scrolling past all those results for the no-name, World cup (Some might call it lazy) so I figured I might as well blog since the Chinese National Games aren’t for another two weeks (Shang Chunsong will win Floor gold and be sent to the World championships. You heard it delusionally, here first) I won’t be going back to the 80’s because a lot of 2021 gym fans don’t know the names of anyone) So without further ado….
1995 US Women win Bronze medal Results in the team competition at Worlds… [Video [ABC-TV] [German TV] US Compulsories [Home Video]
I call this the forgotten, US World team. In spite of the fact it had 2 time, World All-Around Champion Shannon Miller, perpetual whiner and runner up, Kerri Strug and Newcomer, Dumbo Moceanu the team wasn’t expected to figure into the medals. Shannon Miller sprained her ankle during practice and wasn’t going to compete on all the events in team finals but when she saw the team was losing their grip on a chance at a medal she competed Vault: [One] [Two] and Floor on one leg. ABC even gave Shannon some credit for competing hurt but since it didn’t end in gold at the Olympics it’s something only diehard gymnastics fans remember. The 1995 Worlds had some of the most suspicious judging of all time. The overscoring of Romania (especially Milo)and Lilia (UB world medalist? Really?) and rumors about score fixing have been around for years but no one ever seems to talk about them. Other members were Doni Thompson, [UB] [Floor] Mary-Beth Arnold, [UB] Jaycie Phelps (Who made bar finals after a huge compulsories overscore) and Theresa Kulikowski [Floor]
Samantha Sheehan : 2002 world Championships. Bronze medal on Floor. (Can you believe it’s almost been 20 years?) Sam trained at Cincinnati gymnastics academy and spent her entire career being a walking injury. Sam was also one of those unfairly, hated gymnasts back in the early days of the gymterhaters just because she trained with Mary Lee Tracy who had the audacity to bring religion into her gym. I remember when Sam was picked for the team and the usual haters (who preach niceness and acceptance now) were out in full force bitching that she was named to the team. They went ballistic when she lead the Semi finals. An unfortunate, step out of bounds put her in third place during the Final round but this one was one of 3, unexpected medals at this Worlds for the United States after a horrible quad of uselessness.
Jana Bieger: 2006, Silver medalist in the All Around : (Video of her AA performance) [Vault] [Bars] [Beam] [Floor] and won a silver on Floor (Video)
The 2006 Worlds is kindly (for me anyway) remembered as the first time the World judges finally gave Beth Tweddle credit for her Uneven Bar prowess. (And at the expense of Nastia Liukin which was kind of a plus:) but for the US, this Worlds was known as Jana Bieger’s coming out party (Short, coming out party. It only lasted one competition) Natasha Kelley was the gymnast who almost beat Nastia for the National AA title (and should have but I digress) so all eyes were on her when the competition started. Her form wasn’t the greatest and the World judges took notice (just for her apparently because they didn’t notice Jana’s form which was even worse) but Jana stood up to the challenge after Chellsie Memmel’s injury ( She led qualifying but was hurt in team finals and continued anyway and was further hurt and had to pull out) and finished second to Vanessa Ferrari (who had a fall) in the All-around. ( She could have won gold if not for a mistake on her UB routine)
The 2001 World Bronze team medalists [ Team Results] [Full Results]
Not much was expected of the 2001 Worlds team. The quad before had been filled with a bunch of whiny babies who thought they could follow the success of the mag 7 (without any of the work ethic or talent) and they had failed miserably. (One medal overall and that was only given to them by default) This 2001 team’s bronze medal, overall is literally ignored by all gymnastics fans (As is the 95 team) because ….. but this was the start of USA Gymnastics’ comeback to the forefront and should be given more credit. [Different version of team finals] [Tasha on floor]
While Tasha Schwikert and Tabitha Yim didn’t win All around medals they finished 5th and 7th (Respectful finishes considering the debacle of the last 4 years) Tasha was less than a tenth out of 3rd place. Ashley Miles and Mohini Bhardwaj made it into the Vault final (one vault counted to advance I believe) and finished 7th and 8th. A surprising Rachel Tidd made it into the beam final, finishing 8th and Tasha Schwikert finished 5th and in the Floor finals Tabitha Yim finished, 6th , and Tasha Schwikert fell, finishing 8th… And……
Katie Heenan, Bronze medalist, Uneven Bars. [Full Event Finals Results]
Thanks to a fall filled, UB final the last 3 standing took the medals and Katie ended up 3rd with a 9.212. An extremely low score for a medal in an international competition under the ten system, Katie still did her job but is rarely if ever remembered for anything but her College career.
And last but not least….. Ivana Hong, 2009, bronze medalist on beam.
Ivana’s gymnastics career is rarely mentioned (Hell I’ve typed Tabitha 3 times and had to delete it myself:) While she is most noted for her time at Woga just watching her you can tell her beautiful form originated at another gym, GAGE (Home of Leanne Wong, Courtney McCool, and Kara Eaker, among many others)
IVANA qualified into the beam finals in 4th place with a 14.400. (5.9 with an 8.500 execution score) in the finals she received a 6.0 start value with an 8.550 execution score)
WAIT!!!!! (UB Results] [FULL UB final]
If this isn’t a chaotic and completely useful way to end a blog, I don’t know what is. I FORGOT TERIN HUMPHREY. Yep, you can’t have a blog about forgotten Olympic or World medal gymnasts if you don’t remember them except when you are 3 seconds away from pushing, publish:)
At the 2004 Olympics, if you knew who Terin was it was because of her beautiful dance on floor. She started the Wolf turn craze we all hate to hate, so I guess you could also remember her beam, but it was actually the Uneven Bars where Terin made her name as a gymnast, winning the silver medal at the 2004 Olympics. The drama of Khorkina falling. Emilie Pennec and her ugly, Def winning gold. It was almost like they were going to give the other two medals to any US gymnast that made the final. For me, PYON Kwang Sun should have won a medal over Kupets. Li Ya also could have won that medal. The step on the landing hurt her but is it any worse than the huge leg separation of Emile on her def. (No question mark here) Ooops….. sorry. There I go again. This blog is meant to give credit to gymnasts forgotten by the gymterhaters not bitch about the judges
Honorable mention: Courtney Kupets, 2004 Olympic bronze medalist on the UB and 2002, World UB champion. Maggie Nichols, World bronze medalist on floor. Morgan Hurd, silver medalist on Floor at the 2017 World Championships. Jordyn Wieber, bronze medalist on beam in 2011. Aly Raisman, a bronze medalist on Floor, 2011, and bronze on beam at the 2012, Olympics. World Championships. Betty Okino, 1991, bronze medal on beam. In 2002, a silver medal on bars at Worlds. Ashley Postell, 2002, Gold medalist on beam.
Sorry 80’s and before but this blog is long enough. If you actually read this blog, please mention your favorite flower in the comment section. No one will know what you mean. I’ll tell them to read the damn blog I spent 4 hours on to find out:) Did you remember these medalists? Did I miss anyone? Should I have added 80’s and before gymnasts? The only one I feel never gets recognized is Brandy Johnson winning a silver medal on vault in 1989. Maybe Pheobe Mills, bronze medal on beam in the Olympics in 1988. The rest are already unknown.
[US Olympic medalists] [US World medalists]