|— Gymnast —|
|Born||July 27, 1977|
|Discipline||Women's artistic gymnastics|
Dina Anatolyevna Kochetkova (Russian: Дина Анатольевна Кочеткова, born July 27, 1977, Moscow, Russian SFSR) is a Russian gymnast who competed at the 1996 Olympics. Stylistically, Dina was considered by many to be the "last of the Soviets," performing difficult skills with elegant, clean technique. An element she pioneered, a full-twisting back handspring on beam, remains in the Code of Points as "the Kochetkova".
Kochetkova was a member of the Soviet national team from the early 1990s. She won four medals at the 1991 Junior European Championships, placing second on the floor exercise and third in the all-around, vault and balance beam. She continued to succeed in minor international meets; however, she would not come to prominence as a key member of the Russian team for several more years.
1994 was Kochetkova's breakthrough year. She won the Russian National Championships, the Goodwill Games all-around, and three individual medals at the World Gymnastics Championships in Brisbane: bronze in the all-around, behind Shannon Miller and Lavinia Miloșovici; gold on the floor exercise and another bronze on the uneven bars. Many people felt she was robbed of the 1994 World AA title due to lack of reputation. Kochetkova won three more medals (silver AA and team; bronze FX) at the European Championships and shared in the team bronze medal at the World Team Championships in Dortmund. However by the Team World Championships she was suddenly finding herself outshone by rising teammate Svetlana Khorkina.
At the 1995 World Championships, Dina, along with the entire Russian team, had a disappointing meet. The Russian women finished off the podium in the team competition; while Dina qualified for the all-around and two event finals, subpar performances and a low vault score kept her out of medal contention. At the 1996 World Championships Kochetkova rallied with a high balance beam score of 9.887 to win the event; at the '96 Europeans she earned a bronze on floor.
Kochetkova was a member of the Russian team for the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, and was considered a viable medal contender on several events. Prior to the competition, the Russian team was considered one of the strongest there, and great things were expected from Dina, world bars champion Svetlana Khorkina and returning Olympian Rozalia Galiyeva. After a strong showing in the compulsory exercise, the Russians had a narrow lead at the halfway stage and were clearly delighted as they left the arena. However, errors from several gymnasts, combined with nerves from the high pressure event and the noise from the mostly-American crowd, dropped them to 2nd place in the finals. Dina, as one of the most experienced team members, showed strong performances and seemed one of the least affected by the high octane atmosphere, but it was not enough to rescue her team from silver.
Kochetkova qualified in third place to the all-around competition, and was tied for the lead with Chinese star Mo Huilan after 3 rotations. A decision to perform a difficult 1½ twisting Yurchenko vault in the final rotation proved to be unwise; Dina could not perform the skill as cleanly as her simpler vaults. Her low vault score dropped her to sixth place for the individual competition—the highest of the Russians, but still shy of a medal. Had she managed a 9.681 average (easily attainable for her with her 9.9 valued vault) she would have won the AA silver behind Lilia Podkopayeva of Ukraine. And while she placed into three separate Event Finals, she had no better fortune there, finishing fourth on the balance beam and fifth on uneven parallel bars and floor exercise. Had she duplicated her beam performance form any of the earlier rounds she would have managed at least the silver medal, as her previous lowest optional beam score was a 9.825.
The Olympics were Kochetkova's last major competition. She underwent knee surgery in 1997 after her retirement and currently lives in Moscow with her husband, working as a personal trainer.
|World Championships||San Juan||Uneven Bars (Semi−Final)||15||9.250|
|Uneven Bars (Qualification)||4||9.762|
|Balance Beam (Semi−Final)||2||9.862|
|Balance Beam (Qualification)||1||9.875|
|Floor Exercise (Semi−Final)||14||9.425|
|Floor Exercise (Qualification)||6||9.725|
- Competitor for Russia
- Dina Kochetkova at Fédération Internationale de Gymnastique
- Full list of competitive results
- "I did not play with dolls in childhood" Interview from Sovetskiy Sport, March 1998
- Spotlight on Dina Kochetkova