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British Gymnastics Suspends Van Hoof Amidst Investigation
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British Gymnastics has suspended its men's national team coach Eddie Van Hoof MBE while an investigation is conducted concerning allegations of misconduct.

British Gymnastics has suspended its men's national team coach Eddie Van Hoof MBE while an investigation is conducted concerning allegations of misconduct.

On Monday, British Gymnastics issued a brief statement: "The suspension is not a disciplinary penalty, and indeed does not imply any assumption of guilt. We will not be making any further comment at this time."

The details of the allegations have not been made public, but it is believed that unlike the massive scandal involving USA Gymnastics, the accusations against Van Hoof are not related to sexual abuse.

Van Hoof, a 1984 Olympian, has been the head coach for the British men since 2005 and has been credited as one of the architects of the meteoric rise of the British men's program over the past decade. The British men scooped up five medals at last summer's Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, including two gold medals for Max Whitlock. Following Rio, Van Hoof was named UK Sport's "Coach of the Year," receiving the award from Princess Anne, the Princess Royal. He and Whitlock were appointed Members of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) in last year's New Year Honours.

According to British media reports, several gymnasts have expressed concern over Van Hoof's conduct in the gym. Last month, world and European medalist Dan Keatings told the BBC that he had experienced "a culture of fear" and his retirement earlier this year had been a relief. (Keatings did not make allegations against Van Hoof specifically.)

British Gymnastics has also been embroiled in a contract dispute with several of its top stars, including Whitlock, who defended his world pommel horse title in October. Reportedly, the athletes are reportedly unhappy with the terms of the agreement concerning their funding and ability to earn additional sponsorships. The federation set a deadline for the end of November, but British media reported that the contracts are still not signed.

Earlier this year, a women's gymnastics coach in London was the subject of a police investigation after allegations were made of physical and emotional abuse. She is reportedly now coaching at a different club in the capital.

External Link: British Gymnastics

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