Cătălina Ponor

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Cătălina Ponor
— Gymnast —
Cătălina Ponor Rio 2016.jpg
Ponor at the 2016 Olympics
Personal information
Full name Cătălina Ponor
Nickname(s) Cătă, Black Tulip
Country represented  Romania
Born (1987-08-20) 20 August 1987 (age 29)
Constanța, Romania
Residence Bucharest, Romania
Height 1.56 m (5 ft 1 in)
Weight 47 kg (103 lb 10 oz)
Discipline Women's artistic gymnastics
Level Senior international elite
Club CS Dinamo București
Head coach(es) Octavian Bellu
Assistant coach(es) Sandu Lucian
Former coach(es) Matei Stanei, Gabriela Dosoftei
Choreographer Mariana Bitang
Music

2004: Gia
2005: Harem
2006: Underground
2007: Dark Angel
2011: Rise
2011–2012: Requiem for a Dream

2012: Fever

Cătălina Ponor (Romanian pronunciation: [kətəˈlina poˈnor]; born 20 August 1987) is an artistic gymnast who represented Romania at the 2004, 2012, and 2016 Summer Olympics. She won three gold medals at the 2004 Olympics: on balance beam, on floor, and as part of the Romanian team. She also earned a silver medal on floor and a bronze medal as part of the Romanian team at the 2012 Olympics, as well as multiple World Championship and European Championship medals.

Early life[edit]

Ponor was born in Constanța and started gymnastics when she was four years old.[1] In 2002, she was discovered training in Constanţa by the Romanian national team coaches, Octavian Bellu and Mariana Bitang, who invited her to join the national team.[2]

Gymnastics career[edit]

2003–04[edit]

Ponor made her international debut at the 2003 World Artistic Gymnastics Championships in Anaheim, California, where the Romanian team finished in second place. Individually, she won silver medals on balance beam, scoring 9.587, and floor, scoring 9.700.[3] In November, she competed at the Artistic Gymnastics World Cup event in Stuttgart, Germany, where she placed first on balance beam (9.587) and third on floor (9.237).[4]

In March 2004, Ponor competed at the World Cup event in Cottbus, Germany. She placed first on balance beam, scoring 9.700, and second on floor, scoring 9.575.[5] Later in March, she competed at the World Cup event in Lyon, France, and won silver medals on balance beam (9.175) and floor (9.625).[6]

At the beginning of May, she helped Romania win the team competition at the European Women's Artistic Gymnastics Championships in Amsterdam. In event finals, she placed first on balance beam, scoring 9.725, and first on floor, scoring 9.637.[7]

Athens Olympics[edit]

In August, Ponor competed at the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens. She contributed scores of 9.412 on vault, 9.762 on balance beam, and 9.750 on floor toward the Romanian team's first-place finish.[8] In event finals, she won gold medals on balance beam (9.787) and floor (9.750).[9] She called the results "a dream that came true. ... When I won the gold medal on balance beam, I was very emotional. I had wished to win that medal forever."[10]

Ponor was the first female gymnast since Daniela Silivaș in 1988 to win three gold medals at a single Olympics.[2]

2005–07[edit]

Ponor competed at the European Championships in Debrecen, Hungary, in June 2005. She placed first on balance beam with a score of 9.737 and fourth on floor with a score of 9.200.[11] That fall, she won a bronze medal on beam (9.500) at the 2005 World Championships in Melbourne.[12]

In March 2006, she competed at the Cottbus World Cup and placed sixth in the floor final with a score of 13.250.[13] The following month, at the European Championships in Volos, Greece, she placed first on balance beam (15.800) and third on floor (14.600).[14]

In 2007, Ponor began training with Mariana Bitang again. She said: "She's the only person who can bring me back to the form I was in. She's the only coach who can guide me to a world title and another Olympic title." Bitang added, "We saw her very determined, and we were very surprised to see her appetite for competition."[15]

In July, Ponor competed at the Romanian National Championships in Ploiesti, Romania. She placed first on vault with a score of 15.062 and first on balance beam with a score of 16.500.[16]

In September, Ponor competed at the 2007 World Championships in Stuttgart. She helped the Romanian team place third and individually she placed fourth in the balance beam final with a score of 15.700.[17]

In December, Ponor retired due to ongoing injuries.[18]

2011[edit]

In March, Ponor began training again with the Romanian national team under the newly returned coaches Octavian Bellu and Mariana Bitang.[18]

At the beginning of August, Ponor had a minor medical procedure to correct a congenital heart defect that was causing an arrhythmia and was able to resume training the same week. She said, "I had a congenital problem I was born with, but I went to the doctor and all is well."[19]

At the end of August, Ponor competed at the Romanian National Championships in Onesti, Romania. She placed second on balance beam scoring 15.775 and third on floor scoring 14.625.[20]

In October, Ponor competed at the 2011 World Championships in Tokyo. She contributed scores of 14.933 on vault, 15.166 on balance beam, and 14.633 on floor towards the Romanian team's fourth-place finish and individually she placed seventh in the balance beam final with a score of 14.241.[21]

2012[edit]

In March, Ponor competed at the Artistic Gymnastics World Cup event in Doha, Qatar. She placed first on balance beam with a score of 15.300 and first on floor with a score of 15.275.[22] Ponor said, "I want to do the same thing that I did in 2004. It was hard to make a comeback, but all the time I was thinking that I could do it. I will not relax till I reach my goal."[23]

In April, Ponor competed at an international meet against France in Cholet, France. She contributed scores of 14.900 on vault and 15.550 on balance beam towards the Romanian team's first-place finish.[24]

Later in April, Ponor competed at an international meet against Germany and the United Kingdom in Ulm, Germany. She contributed scores of 14.750 on vault, 15.100 on balance beam, and 14.900 on floor toward the Romanian team's first-place finish.[25]

In May, Ponor competed at the 2012 European Championships in Brussels. She contributed scores of 15.033 on vault, 15.433 on balance beam, and 14.733 on floor towards the Romanian team's first-place finish. In event finals, she placed first on balance beam scoring 15.300 and second on floor scoring 14.633.[26] Bellu said, "You saw the reaction of the fans. A triple Olympic champion gets respect, especially if she performs like this."[27] She is the gymnast who has won the balance beam title the most times at the European Championships: 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2012.[citation needed]

In June, Ponor competed at the World Cup event in Ghent, Belgium. She won the balance beam event final with a score of 15.025.[28]

At the beginning of July, Ponor competed at an international meet against France, Germany, and Italy in Bucharest, Romania. She contributed scores of 15.000 on vault, 15.700 on balance beam, and 15.000 on floor toward the Romanian team's first-place finish.[29]

London Olympics[edit]

Ponor with the 2012 Romanian Olympic team

At the end of July, Ponor competed at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London. She helped the Romanian team qualify to the team final,[30] and individually, she qualified to the balance beam final with a score of 15.033 and the floor final with a score of 14.600.[31] In the team final, she contributed scores of 15.100 on vault, 15.416 on balance beam, and 14.800 on floor toward the Romanian team's third-place finish.[32] She earned the high score on balance beam during the team competition.

In event finals, Ponor placed fourth on beam (15.066)[33] and second on floor (15.200).[34] On beam, she had the same score as American Aly Raisman, but after a tie-breaking procedure, Raisman was awarded the bronze medal. Ponor said, "I will say it again, and I want everyone to know, I will quit without regrets. I have worked every second for my team, I have worked every second for myself, I have worked every second for everybody. I have already been an Olympic champion. I will quit gymnastics with my chin up."[35]

2015[edit]

In February 2015, Ponor registered for the anti-doping control within the International Federation of Gymnastics, which suggested that she might be returning to competition.[36] She officially announced her comeback in early March.[37] She told WOGymnastika that by coming back for a third time, she will be risking her biggest failure.[38] She could not compete in the 2015 European Games in Baku as she was not eligible yet.

In September, Ponor made her return in competition by competing in a friendly meet between Romania and France where she helped the Romanian team place first.

2016[edit]

In June 2016, Ponor won two bronze medals at the European Championships. On 6 July, she was selected to represent Romania at the 2016 Summer Olympics, despite Larisa Iordache's achievement of her 4th consecutive national all around title. This announcement was made shortly after Ponor was named as Romania's flag bearer for the opening ceremonies, the first time this honor was given to a gymnast.

Competitive history[edit]

Year Event Team AA VT UB BB FX
2003 World Championships 2nd 2nd 2nd
2004 European Championships 1st 1st 1st
Olympic Games 1st 1st 1st
2005 European Championships 1st 4th
World Championships 3rd
2006 European Championships 2nd 1st 3rd
2007 World Championships 3rd 4th
National Championships 1st 1st
2011 World Championships 4th 7th
National Championships 2nd 3rd
2012 Doha World Cup 1st 1st
FRA-ROU Friendly 1st
GER-GBR-ROU Friendly 1st
European Championships 1st 1st 2nd
Ghent World Cup 1st
ROU-FRA-GER-ITA Friendly 1st
Olympic Games 3rd 4th 2nd
2015 FRA-ROU Friendly 1st
2016 Doha World Cup 1st
Belgium-Romania-Germany Friendly 2nd
European Championships 6th 3rd 3rd
National Championships 1st 1st 1st
Chemnitz Friendly 3rd

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Catalina Ponor". london2012.com. Retrieved 20 April 2013.
  2. ^ a b Ponor returns to Games eight years later – Gymnastics News. NBC Olympics (13 May 2012). Retrieved on 2012-07-20. Archived 12 July 2012 at the Wayback Machine.
  3. ^ Events :: Show Archived 7 August 2012 at the Wayback Machine.
  4. ^ Events :: Show Archived 6 August 2012 at the Wayback Machine.
  5. ^ Events :: Show Archived 28 July 2013 at the Wayback Machine.
  6. ^ Events :: Show Archived 28 July 2013 at the Wayback Machine.
  7. ^ Events :: Show Archived 6 August 2012 at the Wayback Machine.
  8. ^ Women’s Team Final. gymnasticsresults.com (17 August 2004)
  9. ^ Events :: Show Archived 3 August 2012 at the Wayback Machine.
  10. ^ Athletes :: Show Archived 11 April 2012 at the Wayback Machine.
  11. ^ 1st Individual European Championships in Men's and Women's Artistic Gymnastics – Debrecen 2005. Gymnasticsresults.com. Retrieved on 15 August 2016.
  12. ^ 38th Artistic Gymnastics World Championships Melbourne (AUS). Gymnasticsresults.com. Retrieved on 15 August 2016.
  13. ^ Events :: Show Archived 13 October 2013 at the Wayback Machine.
  14. ^ Events :: Show Archived 14 August 2012 at the Wayback Machine.
  15. ^ International Gymnast Magazine Online – Ponor Enlists Bitang in Comeback. Intlgymnast.com (4 May 2007). Retrieved on 2012-07-20.
  16. ^ International Gymnast Magazine Online – Nistor, Popescu Win Romanian Nationals. Intlgymnast.com (31 July 2007). Retrieved on 2012-07-20.
  17. ^ Events :: Show Archived 28 July 2012 at the Wayback Machine.
  18. ^ a b International Gymnast Magazine Online – Ponor Poised to Rejoin Romanian Squad. Intlgymnast.com (28 March 2011). Retrieved on 2012-07-20.
  19. ^ International Gymnast Magazine Online – Ponor: 'All Well' After Minor Heart Procedure. Intlgymnast.com (5 August 2011). Retrieved on 2012-07-20.
  20. ^ International Gymnast Magazine Online – Porgras Takes Third Straight Romanian Title. Intlgymnast.com (26 August 2011). Retrieved on 2012-07-20.
  21. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 31 May 2013. Retrieved 18 September 2012. 
  22. ^ http://fig.lx2.sportcentric.com/system/files/5397/original/WAG_complet.pdf?1333352451[dead link]
  23. ^ Fédération Internationale de Gymnastique : Full Story Archived 27 June 2012 at the Wayback Machine.
  24. ^ International Gymnast Magazine Online – Iordache Powers Romania to First in France. Intlgymnast.com (21 April 2012). Retrieved on 2012-07-20.
  25. ^ International Gymnast Magazine Online – Iordache, Romania Unbeatable in Ulm. Intlgymnast.com (28 April 2012). Retrieved on 2012-07-20.
  26. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 25 October 2014. Retrieved 19 September 2012. 
  27. ^ Casert, Raf. (30 May 2012) Belu leads Romania back into Olympic limelight – Gymnastics News. NBC Olympics. Retrieved on 2012-07-20. Archived 12 July 2012 at the Wayback Machine.
  28. ^ http://fig.lx2.sportcentric.com/system/files/5542/original/Results_Finals.pdf?1339501751[dead link]
  29. ^ International Gymnast Magazine Online – Romanians Rule in Bucharest Quad Meet. Intlgymnast.com (7 July 2012). Retrieved on 2012-07-20.
  30. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 3 December 2013. Retrieved 30 July 2012. 
  31. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2 December 2013. Retrieved 16 August 2012. 
  32. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2 December 2013. Retrieved 31 July 2012. 
  33. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 22 October 2012. Retrieved 7 August 2012. 
  34. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 22 October 2012. Retrieved 16 August 2012. 
  35. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 12 August 2012. Retrieved 7 August 2012. 
  36. ^ Fédération Internationale de Gymnastique – View FigNews. Fig-gymnastics.com. Retrieved on 15 August 2016.
  37. ^ Catalina Ponor Is Back – WOGymnastika. Wogymnast.com (11 March 2015). Retrieved on 2016-08-15.
  38. ^ Catalina Ponor "I Will Be Risking The Biggest Failure In My Career" – WOGymnastika. Wogymnast.com (20 March 2015). Retrieved on 2016-08-15.

External links[edit]

Olympic Games
Preceded by
Horia Tecău
Flagbearer for  Romania
Rio de Janeiro 2016
Succeeded by
Incumbent