--- ProSport reports that Marian Drăgulescu just taught his first class as a coach at Dinamo Bucharest (Aurelia Dobre's old club), where his former teammates Marius Urzică and Dan Potra are coaching as well. According to ProSport, Drăgulescu's goal is to create a gymnast who will be better than himself. Good luck with that, Marian!
--- Adevărul reports that Sandra Izbaşa and Răzvan Şelariu were voted the Romanian Gymnastics Federation's Athletes of the Year 2008. Şelariu was second on floor at the 2008 Europeans; Izbaşa is the Olympic champion on the same event.
--- A few days ago we reported that Diego Hypolito had lost his sponsors. Now Dutch newspapers are reporting that the same fate has befallen Suzanne Harmes, whose sponsorship contract with the Dutch Olympic Committee has not been renewed due to a lack of noteworthy achievements in 2008 (Harmes won the national title and qualified to the Olympics, but achieved little else). This means a substantial loss of income for Harmes, which is all the more worrying because her new training arrangements (she recently switched to a club in the north of the country while continuing to live in the south) call for frequent traveling and overnight stays at hotels, and because she has a child to look after (she is a single mom).
Suzanne Harmes with her son Lugano
(photo: Merlin Daleman/NRC)
--- Finally, just in case you were wondering what Dutch, Belgian, and German gymnastics fans get up to at the end of each season, here's your answer: they attend gymnastics galas. A while ago we posted a video with highlights of a Dutch gala. Now the Flemish Gymnastics Federation has posted a video with highlights of the gala which was held in Ghent in late December. There are some quick (very quick!) glimpses of Sandra Izbaşa, Daria Zgoba, Aagje Vanwalleghem, and Benoit Caranobe, as well as an acrotumbler hitting a triple back, a rather unique pair ribbon routine, and some impressive-looking acrobatic gymnastics and rhythmic gymnastics. We've been told the Ghent gala was better than the Dutch galas, but we don't think the Belgians were treated to the Chinese men's four which performed at the Dutch galas and wowed audiences with their human rope-skipping.