On Wednesday, August 24 USA Gymnastics will experience two big changes.
First, USA Gymnastics will be the new owners of 36.2 acres, formerly part of the 2,000 acre Karolyi Ranch, that will include three training gyms, dormitory space for 300 athletes and their coaches, a dance studio, dining hall, medical and rehab facilities, and recreational areas.
The new name for the current facility will be the USA Gymnastics Athlete Development Center.
“It has everything we could possibly ask for,” USA Gymnastics President Steve Penny told The Associated Press. “Along with what it represents to our heart and soul, as a physical facility, we couldn’t go out and build it. It’s been custom made what for what we want and need. You add up all the elements and it’s like ‘Dang, what an easy decision.'”
USA Gymnastics will create a museum in the main gym honoring the Karolyis’ success and involvement with USA Gymnastics dating back as early as the 1980’s.
Penny told the Associated Press, “They are still a part of us,” Penny said. “They will always be a part of USA Gymnastics. They’re still both going to play vital roles for us in the future. Martha will always want to drift into the gym and we’ll always want her to do that.”
Second, August 24 is the “unofficially” retirement date of Martha Karolyi as the National Team Coordinator.
As the National Team Coordinator since 2001, Martha designed a semi-centralized training system that has been hugely successful.
Under her reign, she has helped USA Gymnastics win numerous medals and helped create the past 3 Olympic All-Around Champions (Carly Patterson, Nastia Liukin, and Gabby Douglas) and the 3 time reigning World All-Around Champion (Simone Biles).
“Once everybody sees that this system is working and producing world and Olympic champions, they believe in it,” Martha Karolyi said last fall. “We believe they will be hopefully following in a same direction down the road. We want to make sure this is safe for generation after generation,” Marta told the Associated Press.
Focusing on the 2016 Rio Olympics, no replacement for Martha has been announced. But rumors have surfaced that Valeri Liukin, Mihai Brestyan, and Rhonda Faehn could all be candidates.
Source: timesunion.com, usagymnastics