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***The Official Beijing 2008 Olympic Games Thread***

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Originally Posted by StereoXGirl View Post
I didn't see that! Maybe NBC was waiting to show it until tonight?
I also haven't seen that yet.

 

Does anyone here like rhythmic gymnastics? I don't think the US qualified a rhythmic gymnast, so I wonder how much coverage it will get on NBC. I think it starts tomorrow.

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Olympic gymnastics: Liukin, Johnson face different futures

By Diane Pucin

Los Angeles Times

Article Last Updated: 08/20/2008 02:43:50 PM MDT

 

 

BEIJING - This is the difference between being the women's gymnastics all-around gold medalist and the balance beam gold medalist:

All-around winner Nastia Liukin held a small post-Olympics news conference at a palace in a garden. Balance beam winner Shawn Johnson did hers in Interview Room No. 4 at the main press center and shared that room with men's high bar silver medalist Jonathan Horton.

t2.liukin.getty.jpg Liukin, 18, of Parker, Texas, leaves these Olympics with five medals - a gold, three silvers and a bronze - and with the feeling she will be back competing at least for the 2009 world championships.

She is going home Thursday, and a welcoming party is being scheduled for her at the Dallas airport. She will be on the Jay Leno show next week and has begun participating in several new ad campaigns. Her image is on ATM Visa machines in the athletes' village, and she is talking about competing in the 2009 world championships and adding to her total of nine world medals.

Johnson, 16, leaves with four medals - a gold and three silvers - and a road map of her future that doesn't necessarily contain competitive gymnastics.

She is planning some shopping, a trip to the Great Wall and a march in the closing ceremony. She will probably take this semester off from high school, the first of her junior year, so she can participate in a planned gymnastics tour. But after that Johnson seems lukewarm about competing.

"It's hard to think about four more years," Johnson said. "After not winning the all-around, it hit me pretty hard, not that I got the silver, but just all my emotions came out. I was training to win gold. I'm just proud of myself that I kept my head up."

And maybe, despite all the discussions about the inclusion of possibly underage Chinese gymnasts, Bruno Grandi, president of the international gymnastics federation (FIG), had a purpose in stressing his desire to see the artistic side of the sport given as much weight as the technical side.

Grandi gave his speech on the day before the women's competition started, and those words sounded a little hollow when he also was adamant that his federation had no willingness to investigate well-sourced allegations that three of the Chinese women gymnasts were younger than the requirement that an Olympic competitor needed to turn 16 sometime during 2008.

But he said he was worried about whether his sport had turned too far in the direction of acrobatics over elegance. "I fear the sport is moving too far away from its good balance," Grandi said.

After Johnson powered through a rookie season in 2007 that included winning every all-around competition she entered and after beating Liukin during each of the four rounds of national and Olympic trials competitions that helped pick the U.S. women's team, Johnson lost the medal she most wanted - Olympic all-around gold - to Liukin.

Liukin is 5 feet 3 and 99 pounds, and finished with a growth spurt that added about four inches in a year. Johnson is 4 feet 9 and 90 pounds, and maybe still growing. Those growth spurts can be hard to deal with. Liukin's father and coach Valeri said when his daughter sprouted two years ago she began hitting the floor with her legs on spin moves around the uneven bars.

Johnson's powerful tumbling was the signature of her silver-medal floor exercise routine and gold-medal balance beam performance. Liukin's lithe daintiness and the dance training she received from her mother, Anna, a former Russian rhythmic gymnast, were the hallmarks of her uneven bars work, her silver-medal performance on the balance beam and her sweeping floor exercise work.

After the team qualifying competition, Johnson's coach, Liang Chow, wondered if Johnson had been underscored on some routines and said the same thing after the team medal competition.

"I'm not sure where all of the deductions came from," Chow said. It wasn't a complaint as much as consternation. It seemed the same routines that won Johnson three gold medals at last year's world championships were receiving scores a little bit lower.

Valeri Liukin said one reason his daughter may stick around at least for another world championship cycle is that the sport's code of points will become more favorable to Nastia's style.

beijing-olympics-41705661.jpg

After each Olympics the international federation officials re-evaluate how they want to score routines.

Since Athens, when the so-called "perfect 10" formula was dropped in favor of a system that gives a pair of scores based first on degree of difficulty and then execution, there has been the feeling among some coaches and gymnasts that high-risk tricks would replace the element of elegance.

Valeri Liukin said Wednesday he understands that the new code of points will require fewer athletic tricks and allow more room for connecting moves. Was that a reaction to the tiny tots from China who led their team to the gold medal? Liukin said he didn't know, but whatever the reason, his daughter seems still to be in the medal-winning business.

Johnson just wants to go on tour and have fun.

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It seems like every scoring controversy has gone the Chinese way, I mean you can help but think something is wrong at times.

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Yea Walsh and May!! Win the gold in beach volley ball!! Can you believe the chineese player was pulling that Oh I'm Hurt ploy again!!! hahaha

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Originally Posted by Karren_Hutton View Post
Yea Walsh and May!! Win the gold in beach volley ball!! Can you believe the chineese player was pulling that Oh I'm Hurt ploy again!!! hahaha
Yeah, it was funny how the announcers were explaining that she "likes a little drama" in her matches. lol!

 

Congrats to May and Walsh!

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Soo...about the men's 200 meter race...

 

All the drama with the disqualifications kind of took away a little from the enormity of what Bolt accomplished, which is a real shame.

 

Spearmon (USA - who would have gotten the bronze) definitely stepped on the line quite a few times and honestly deserved to be disqualified, unfortunately. But I think he really showed poor sportsmanship by protesting it and then getting silver medalist Martina (Netherlands Antilles) disqualified as well. I suppose it's fair, since they both stepped on the line, but the whole thing just left a bad taste in my mouth. frown.gif

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I missed the 200 meter race... We were at Kennywood all day... Riding roller coasters... Got a gold medal for fudge eating!! smile.gif. Was it sure good!!! Hahaha.

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Originally Posted by Karren_Hutton View Post
I missed the 200 meter race... We were at Kennywood all day... Riding roller coasters... Got a gold medal for fudge eating!! smile.gif. Was it sure good!!! Hahaha.
You ate fudge without me???

 

bringiton.gif

 

LOL! j/k. Sounds like you had a good time! smile.gif

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I'd email you a piece.... I still have a piece left... But its at home.. Hope my wife doesn't polish it off before I get home!! Maybe I'd better sneak home at noon and double check!! Lol.

 

I actually did pretty good.. Ate a salade for lunch there.. I think I was the only guy there eating a salad.. So I could make room for the fudge!! smile.gifsmile.gifsmile.gif

 

My daughter and I rode all the coaster a couple times... And the log jammer.. And a couple dark rides.. It was nice but packed since it was marching band day and a big parade through the park in the evening..

 

But we got home in time to see May and Walsh kick butt!! Nothing like watching scantily clad wet women jumping up and down in the sand, hugging!! What a sport!! I love womens beach volley ball!! Wonder why the men don't hug? Probably some rule aginst it? Hahaha

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The US women's volleyball team was phenomenal! There is talk of retirement - I hope they play at least one more year.

 

Canada won a gold medal in horse jumping and a silver in the women's platform diving.

All three of these athletes - of course the horse is an athlete - are so deserving!

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Does the hoese get a medal too, Carolyn? He should if he doesn't. Walsh and May were talking about having babys.. But not quitting... So we'll see how that goes... They sure are fun to watch... They play so well together..

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Originally Posted by StereoXGirl View Post
Soo...about the men's 200 meter race...

 

All the drama with the disqualifications kind of took away a little from the enormity of what Bolt accomplished, which is a real shame.

 

Spearmon (USA - who would have gotten the bronze) definitely stepped on the line quite a few times and honestly deserved to be disqualified, unfortunately. But I think he really showed poor sportsmanship by protesting it and then getting silver medalist Martina (Netherlands Antilles) disqualified as well. I suppose it's fair, since they both stepped on the line, but the whole thing just left a bad taste in my mouth. frown.gif

Totally. I love watching Usain's runs... I root for him now. Haha.

 

I felt bad for Spearmon but he was a punk for that move. I'm sure his pride and being embarrassed after celebrating and then it being revoked added to his behavior. You can see in his face he was mortified/pissed. It was pretty funny though. Haha. So evil...

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Eric Lamaze's horse gets a giant bale of hay, in the shape of a gold medal.

Trust me, he'd prefer the alfalfa over the medal anyday!

 

Actually, he had a brilliant red and yellow ribbon attached to his bridal. Every night he goes to sleep he gets to look at his ribbon and remember a job well done.

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US Women won gold in Soccer final . 1-0 over Brazil partially erasing the embarassing 4-0 loss in the Semis of the last World Cup.

 

Brazil is an awesome team, Marta is a world class player.

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source

 

Baidu cache offers more evidence of underage Chinese gymnasts

 

By Joel Hruska | Published: August 20, 2008 - 01:05PM CT

olympiclogo.jpgOne of the controversies that's been swirling around the Chinese Olympic Games since they began is the age of several of China's gymnasts. According to Chinese officials (and, of course, official passports and ID cards), both He Kexin and Jiang Yuyuan are 16, and therefore old enough to compete in the Olympic Games. Unfortunately for China, there's a growing body of evidence pointing in the opposite direction, including online evidence a gumshoe hacker discovered lurking in the cache of Baidu, China's equivalent of Google.

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If these allegations prove true, it would scarcely be the first time China has lied about the age of an athlete. In 2000—three years after the minimum qualifying age for Olympic Gymnastic competition was raised to 16—Chinese gymnast Yang Yun won a bronze medal for her performance on the uneven bars. Yang's passport showed her as 16 years old at the time, but the gymnast herself later admitted on Chinese national television that she and her coaches had lied about her age, and that she had been just 14 at the time. There's also evidence that Chinese gymnast Li Ya was just 13 when she competed at the World Championships in Anaheim back in 2003.

A story that ran Beijing Evening News on December 2, 2007, reported that He Kexin was 13, while the New York Times turned up evidence in other Chinese papers that cited her age as 14, with a birth date of January 1, 1994. Currently, He's passport lists her date of birth as January 1, 1992. Similarly, Jiang Yuyuan's own national identification card lists her birth date as October 1, 1993. Now, new information gathered from Baidu's cache further confirms these allegations. Over at Stryde Hax, the anonymous author describes his search for official information on He Kexin's real birth date. Google, rather suspiciously, has been scrubbed clean—searching the engine's cache reveals references to He Kexin, but He's name and data have been removed. As for Baidu, the main search function returns only government-approved data—a spreadsheet that purports to show information on Kexin has also been deleted—but checking the engine's cache proves that a copy of the do***ent is still preserved. He Kexin's age, as listed in the preserved copy of an official Chinese do***ent? 14.

baidu-cache.png

Stryde Hax dug up the cached copies of the do***ents

The IOC has refused to investigate this situation, claiming that it's the responsibility of the Federation International Gymnastics (FIG) to verify the ages of competitors. The FIG verifies age by checking an official, government-approved passport. Whatever the passport says is what the FIG goes by, even if the girl in question barely looks 12, much less 16.

Legendary gymnastics coach Bela Karolyi noted that this sort of cheating has been a problem for years and cited the case of a girl the North Korean Gymnastics Federation listed as 15 for three straight years. As Karolyi told the NYT, "Oh, come on, she [the North Korean gymnast] was just in diapers and everyone could see that, just like some of the Chinese girls are now." If you look close, you can see they still have their baby teeth. Little tiny teeth!"

When asked if the underage allegations could be proven, Karolyi doubted it. "The paperwork is changed just too good. In a country like that, they’re experts at it. Nothing new." He, of course, would know—Karolyi developed the entire Romanian gymnastics machine that produced Nadia Comaneci and her 1976 perfect 10 scores, and coached both Romanian and, after his defection, American teams to championships.

Cheating isn't unique to China, and it's not unique to gymnastics—as Karolyi said, the problem has been embedded in the system for decades, partly because its easier for younger, smaller girls to handle certain types of physically difficult routines. The IOC's lackadaisical attitude towards the situation, however, is befuddling, especially at a time when drug testing and anti-cheating measures are at an all-time high.

The apparently-incriminating Baidu cache also demonstrates the folly of attempting to rewrite history. While it's possible to alter passports, birth certificates, and ID cards, digital data is much more difficult to zero out.

Further reading

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My mom saw something about this a few minutes ago saying the IOC was going to investigate He Kexin's age?

 

IOC orders investigation into He Kexin's age - Fourth-Place Medal - Olympics - Yahoo! Sports

 

I hope they do. She's the one that tied with Nastia on uneven bars (causing Nastia to get silver due to the tie breaking software). It would be awesome if they'd give Nastia the gold!

 

In the past when China has cheated regarding age and they admitted to it, nothing happened, though. So I doubt anyone will actually be stripped of their medals.

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Originally Posted by Ricci View Post
Just how hard is it to find out someones age??
In China? lol. Probably pretty hard. I'm sure the Chinese gov't will provide any do***ents asked for saying whatever they need to say.

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how about a birth certificate?

Originally Posted by StereoXGirl View Post
In China? lol. Probably pretty hard. I'm sure the Chinese gov't will provide any do***ents asked for saying whatever they need to say.

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Originally Posted by Ricci View Post
how about a birth certificate?
I'm sure the Chinese gov't could provide them with appropriately altered birth certificates as well if it came to that. lol.

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doh.gif oh lol thanks for that info I had no idea
Originally Posted by StereoXGirl View Post
I'm sure the Chinese gov't could provide them with appropriately altered birth certificates as well if it came to that. lol.

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i think the ones that get hurt are the poor athletes. I think forever their reputation is tarnished and they are fine gymnasts.

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Oh, those girls are awesome gymnasts, no one is trying to take their skill away.

They cheated in a manner of speaking, by lying along with the Chinese government in order to put them in the Olympics when they were not allowed to be in.

Too bad for those girls; their accomplishment is being overshadowed by this. They have several more years of competition ahead of them but because it was ini China, they were pawns in the desperate need for China to win the gold.

 

Why can't the US men or women relay teams hang on to those frikking batons!!!!!????????????add_shit.gif

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Well both the US men and women dropped the batton in the 4 by 100 meter relay tonigh knocking them all out of the finals!! The mens beach volleyball did beat Brazil in a great game for the gold!!

 

Mittsy May had on the cutest chineese hat in the stands!! Lol

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