Posts Tagged ‘Bruno Grandi’

Four more years

October 18, 2008
FIG President Bruno Grandi.

FIG President Bruno Grandi.

The International Gymnastics Federation has re-elected Bruno Grandi President.

HELSINKI, Finland (AP) — Bruno Grandi was re-elected as the International Gymnastics Federation president Saturday for the next four years through the 2012 London Olympics.

The 74-year-old Italian will serve a fourth term, having led the world governing body since 1996. He also has been a member of the International Olympic Committee for eight years.

Adrian Stoica of Romania and Nellie Kim of Belarus were re-elected as presidents of the men’s and women’s technical committees, the bodies that make the rules for the sport.

International Gymnast indicates that it wasn’t perhaps the most, um, enthusiastic of elections. Of the FIG’s 83 voting members, 23 — more than a quarter of the ballots — were either against him or absentations.

Grandi’s gotten a lot of flack for being the guy who pushed the perfect 10 system away and replaced it with the A-score/B-score thing. He’s also approved having five gymnasts on an Olympic team next quad instead of the six we’ve seen since the 2000 Games (down from seven in 1996), a move he believes will open up competition to smaller countries.

The FIG is also expected to move forward with a licensing system, another of Grandi’s projects. Beginning next year, any gymnast competing in an international competition would have to have a license, and that documentation would follow the athlete throughout his or her career.

Yang Yun to be investigated?

August 11, 2008

International Gymnastics Federation (FIG) President Bruno Grandi told USA Today that he may initiate an investigation into whether Yang Yun was really 14 at the Sydney Olympics.

Yang won the bronze medal on uneven bars after a brilliant routine in event finals and was a contender for the all-around title as well before falling on balance beam in Sydney. Her pretty layout Cuervo vault, one of the best ever done, clinched China’s team bronze medal in 2000.

Yang Yun, 2000 Olympic Games Team Finals, Vault:

Yang gave an interview on Chinese television saying she was only 14 in Sydney, The New York Times reported in late July.

Grandi apparently doesn’t watch Chinese TV.

Nevertheless, after the news conference, Grandi said he wants to look into the dispute over Yang’s age. “I want to evaluate,” he said. “I want to speak with my executive committee.”

Oh yeah: Grandi suggests solving the age of athletes snafu (brought about by documents available on the internet indicating that He Kexin, Yang Yilin and Jiang Yuyuan may be younger than the 16 the government says they are) by issuing licenses to gymnasts earlier in their careers.

Which may not be a bad idea. But what’s to prevent a country from fudging its athletes’ ages beginning at age 10 or so instead of age 15?

A new thought from Bruno Grandi

December 5, 2007

Bruno Grandi, President of the Federation Internationale de Gymnastique.FIG President Bruno Grandi  is saying he doesn’t want gymnasts competing internationally until age 16. Period.

China’s Xinhua news service reported today that Grandi, on hand for the Good Luck Beijing International Invitational, told a reporter he was pondering raising the age limit for all international competitions to 16 after 2008.

“Sports like gymnastics should not be there for kids,” said Grandi. “Gymnasts should only be allowed to compete in international stage when they are mature physically and mentally.”

A gymnast must already be 16 at the end of an Olympic year to be eligible to represent his or her country at the games. At the 2007 World Championships, several 14-year-olds, including the USA’s Ivana Hong, France’s Marine Petit and Japan’s Koko Tsurumi were allowed in because each be 16 by the end of 2008. The number of 15-year-olds who make an impact at international meets every year is beyond counting.

Junior international meets, while not necessarily indicative of who will be good once they reach the senior level, allow gymnasts to gain experience competing under pressure. Not only that, they get exposed themselves to international customs and friendships. Why Grandi would want to ban something so obviously beneficial seems extremely strange.

Grandi is already controversial for his outspoken stance on the current code of points. He was adament about shelving the perfect 10 system that was used before 2005 and still speaks favorably of the new system that seems to give difficulty an edge over execution.

“Gymnastics should not be framed by ‘a set mark ‘. The new scoring code is a way of encouraging athletes to challenge their courage and high-point.

“The increase of routine difficulty is a trend inevitable. This trend won’t change after the Beijing Olympics, but gymnastics is not acrobatics and keeps the traits of art and beauty in additional to competition,” commented Grandi, adding FIG won’t neglect the attraction of expressive force in the sport on its pursuit of difficulty.”