In an interview in the January/February 2017 issue of International Gymnast magazine, recently appointed U.S. women’s national team coordinator Valeri Liukin said the integration of younger gymnasts into the team’s training camps is his key priority.
“My biggest dream is to make this team a little bit larger since we do have seniors and juniors practicing together,” said Liukin, a double gold medalist at the 1988 Olympic Games and father of 2008 Olympic all-around champion Nastia Liukin. “So that’s my goal. Have more juniors involved because this is our future.”
Liukin said he is optimistic that team standout Simone Biles, who won four gold medals at the 2016 Games, will return after 2017.
“Normally the first year is very busy after the Olympics for superstars like her,” said Liukin of Biles. “So I don’t think she will be back this year, but I really do hope that she’ll come back in 2018.”
The January/February 2017 issue of International Gymnast magazine also includes interviews with recently appointed FIG Women’s Technical Committee President Donatella Sacchi and Romania’s Andreea Raducan, and an A-to-Z Review of 2016. To subscribe to the print and or digital edition, or order back issues, click here.