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      Olympics 2004
 Romanian Gymnastics Team

Ponor Catalina
  Sofronie Daniela
  Rosu Monica
  Eremia Alexandra
  Ban Oana   (retired)
  Stroescu Silvia (retired)
  Munteanu Andreea
  Urzica Marius
  Dragulescu Marian
  Suciu Ioan
  Potra Dan
  Selariu Razvan
  Popescu Daniel
coach: Belu Octavian

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Name:  BELU  Octavian                              


Date of Birth: Feb 17,  
Place of Birth
:Bucharest, ROM


Marital Status:Divorced      
:one daughter, Iolanda (model)   
Profession:National Coach

Start discipline:     
Nat.team since:  1981                
:Deva Schol of Gymnastics

Belu profile (FIG data):

Octavian Belu has been the coach of the Romanian Women's Team since the defection of Bela Karolyi for political reason in 1981.

Belu took over a program that most experts considered would falter after the loss of Karolyi, and not only continued its outstanding success, but improved upon it. As a result he has become the most successful gymnastics coach in the world (15 Olympics Gold Medals), training the numerous world champions and leading the prestigious Romanian team to victory. His dedication and commitment to excellence have ment the key to success for Romanian gymnastics.

Belu started out in gymnastics as an athlete. He also payed volleyball and basketball and took up diving. A mediocre gymnast by his own admission, he was all the more driven to study the technical aspects of the sport, methodology and training. In 1974, he graduated from the Faculty of Physical Education and Sports Institue in Bucharest. He worked for a time as a teacher of Physical Education at Valea Clugareasca before returning in Ploiesti where he began coaching gymnastics.

His was married to Camelia, who is a nurse and has one daughter Iolanda, born in 1978. Romanian press wrote about their undiclosed divorce, back in 2000.

[romanian-gymnastics.com: according to the romanian sport newspapers, Belu is supposed to have a 12 years-long, romantic (spreading flowers from airplane, on "her" Birthday- included) affair with Mrs.Bitang-which is currently separated from her husband]

Considering the champions he trained, Belu think that each generation of gymnasts seems to have two champions:
Nadia Comaneci - Teodora Ungureanun;
Ecaterina Szabo - Lavinia Agache;
Daniela Silivas - Cristina Bontas;
Lavinia Milosovici - Gina Gogean - Simona Amanar.

In Athens in last August, Octavian Belu was blissfully delighted when Catalina Ponor took three times the gold medal and overall, when he drove the women’s team to a new victory. (By Philippe Silacci-FIG)


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