Apr 022015

Doha World Cup participation has become a beautiful tradition for Romanian gymnasts. And the best part of it, are the medals.

This year the heroines were called LauraDiana Laura Bulimar and Laura Jurca. Whereas for the junior and senior Olympic medalist, Diana Bulimar, the competition represented a comeback, for the junior Olympic finalist, Laura Jurca, it marked her senior debut.

It’s easy to figure out how important the event was for both gymnasts as a necessary milestone in their career and also as a useful training for the upcoming European Championships in Montpelier.

Fears were defeated, mistakes overcome and emotions exploited. Diana Bulimar earned the silver on bars and the bronze on balance beam while Laura Jurca took silver on floor and was forth on bars and beam. Thus, both of them look forward confidently, to new challenges. We keep our fingers crossed for them.

Laura Jurca – silver performance on floor

Diana Bulimar – bronze routine on beam

(Daniela Sburlea)

Aug 262014

The determination, the passion, the trust, the will, the fire… we’ve seen them from that time when, at only 11, in direct confrontation with inertia and gravity, she just refused to get off beam, we’ve seen them time and time again in her precise route and continuous evolution and rediscovered them enhanced in her “super-girl” like attempts to finish, although injured, an important exercise for her team at Gymnix  2013 and she showed them again at the recent Youth Olympic Games, where even though not at full capacity, she fought till the end to get her job done.

Laura Jurca, Romania’s gymnast at YOG 2014 was under a true maturity test at this first world level experience of hers, managing to finish in high spirits a competition that proved to be very difficult for her, with every day bringing new challenges and every apparatus asking its toll of mistakes. Laura started with her usual determination, being the only gymnast to qualify for all 5 individual finals and continued strongly but not without obstacles, placing 7th in the all-around, 4th on vault, 7th on bars, 8th on beam and 4th on floor.

The hesitations, the nerves, the mistakes are now lessons learned, experiences that Laura will build on for her future successes. What us, the fans, the admirers, the gymnastics “stans” take from this event are the smile and the determined gaze, the perseverance, boldness and fair-play that she represented us with at the most important meet of young Olympic hopefuls from all over the world. We are so proud of her. And we go back to the cheer that we had for her at the beginning of the event: “Tare, Laura!”

 Posted by on August 26, 2014  Tagged with:
May 212014

In Sofia, between 12 and 18 May the 30th edition of the European Women Gymnastics Championships wrote its story. The medal record is already history: gold for the senior team (Larisa Iordache, Diana Bulimar, Andreea Munteanu, Stefnia Stanila and Silvia Zarzu), gold on floor, silver on beam, bronze on vault and 6th place on uneven bars for Larisa Iordache, 4th place on floor for Diana Bulimar, bronze for the junior team(Laura Jurca, Andreea Iridon, Anda Butuc, Andreea Ciurusniuc and Andra Stoica), silver in the all-around, silver on vault and 5th place on floor for Laura Jurca, silver on beam, silver on floor, 6th place in the all-around for Andreea Iridon and 6th place on beam for Anda Butuc.

Although a very productive Euro edition for team Romania we have to think of it as just a step to the bigger goal: a medal at the upcoming Olympic Games. Hopefully the beautiful moment from Sofia will turn out to be a just the beginning of a long line of successes.

Puzzle team was present body and soul in Sofia both in the media space and in the supporters’ area. As we couldn’t stay away, our hearts beat with and for them in all those moments. Results are history and memories we will keep with us forever. We want to share with you some of the special moments the Romanian fans have experienced at these Euros. Here are the gymnasts for whom the Romanian fans sighed for with emotion, joy, regret or indignation:

Romania’s senior team (Unstoppable in the team final)

Romania’s junior team (Overcoming beginners nerves and lack of experience )

Laura Jurca (Managing an extremely difficult moment on the uneven bars)

Andreea Iridon (So close to gold. The fans believed in it: “Bravo Andreea!, Bravo Andreea!…)

Larisa Iordache (Best gymnast in Sofia)

 Roxana Popa (We are so proud of her!  “Hai Roxana, Hai Roxana!..”)

Noemi Makra (So beautiful and so underrated… Romanian fans loved her!)

Anna Pavlova (Impossible not to love Anna Pavlova! “Davai Anna!”)

Becky Downie (A much expected medal. Romanian fans appreciated her value.)

Maike Enderle (German girls were favorites in the UB junior final)

Claudia Fragapane (Appreciating even the most dangerous competitors)

Mar 262014


Between 22-23 March 2014, the traditional competition “Trofeo Citta di Jesolo” had amongst competitors young juniors and seniors from Romania.

The junior team was composed of : Anda Butuc, Andra Stoica, Andreea Iridon, Asiana Peng, Laura Jurca and Stefania Orzu while in the senior competition we were represented by: Andreea Munteanu, Stefania Stanila and Silvia Zarzu.

The junior team succeeded a total of 212.900 , finishing in a silver earning 2nd place.  Laura Jurca was the highest individually ranked Romanian in 4th place with a strong total of 55.500 while Anda Butuc was 12th with a total of 52.050, Stefania Orzu 19th  (50.150) and Asiana Peng 22nd (49.950). In the vault final, Laura Jurca won the bronze medal (14.234), behind Bailie Key (14.934) and Jordan Chiles (14.350). On the uneven bars Anda Butuc was 4th with 13.200. Beam specialist, Andreea Iridon won the bronze medal (14.300),behind Norah Flatley (14.667) and Bailie Key (14.533). The floor final brought a second medal for the tiny Laura Jurca – a silver one (13.733) while Andra Stoica with a watered down routine was 7th (13.000).

In the senior field, Andreea Munteanu surpassed her competitors on beam, earning a much deserved gold medal (14.833). She was followed by Elisa Meneghini and Alyssa Baumann who tied for 2nd place (14.200) and by Natsumi Sasada (14.00). Stefania Stanila was 5th (13.700). In the floor final gold went Mikayla Skinner (14.533), silver to Kyla Ross (14.233) and bronze to Andreea Munteanu (13.967). Stefania Stanila was 5th again (13.633). In the all around, Andreea Munteanu and Stefania Stanila placed 13th (54.500) and 14th (54.450)respectively.

The competition served as a useful verification for our young junior and new seniors for the upcoming European Championships. The results are optimistic and even though there are still details to be corrected and adjusted as well as confidence to be built, the girls proved to be on a very good track.

We would like to thank our contributor Anna Meneghel  and our friends who have helped us with the photos: Filippo Tomasi, Silvia Vatteroni, Virginia Nastia Magnani, Luigi Fardella, Giulia Zanetti. (©)

May 062013

At the beginning of the year 16 juniors were selected to  strengthen the Olympic team training at Izvorani. Together with the 4 seniors remained in the post Olympic fight, the new members of the team are now the first offensive  line in the Rio Olympics strategy.


Daniela AndreiDaniela Andrei is a gymnast that raised a lot of hopes over the years, being thought to be one of the most talented gymnast of the current generation. Unfortunately she did not live up to her potential yet, being slowed down by health issues and by limited competitive experience. But she keeps fighting, and with more luck, we are sure she can prove her true value. She comes from CSS Buzau club, where she trained with Tanta Patrut and Constantin Clinciu, she then prepared at Onesti junior center and  Deva and Izvorani Olympic centers. She is senior since 2009.

Dana, elegant and precise on beam


Madalina BlendeaMadalina Blendea, athlete of CNS Cetate Deva club and student of Adela Popa and Ioan Coroiu was a usual presence on the  awarding podiums, dominating her age category until last year when some medical issues have occurred and prevented her from competing since. She is a complete, 4 events gymnast, with very polished executions  and presentations and a special affinity for uneven bars, having  nice lines and good rhythm on this apparatus. She becomes senior in 2015.

Mada and a very promising uneven bars routine


Diana BulimarDiana Bulimar, the reliable soldier of the Olympic team, reinvented through her individual successes at this year’s  Euro’s is a Izvorani team member since 2010. She now represents CS Dinamo Bucharest club but has started gymnastics at CSS 1 Timisoara under Mariana Tomceanu and Marcel Benea and was  later part of Onesti and Deva junior teams. She is a multiple European and Olympic medalist as both a junior and a senior. She always excelled on floor and beam, she was safe and precise on uneven bars for the team and this year she showed great vault potential announcing herself as a powerful contented for big events all-around final. She needs to raise her difficulty level to increase her individual chances. She is senior since 2011.

A golden floor


Anda ButucAnda Butuc comes from CSS 2 Bucharest club where she was coached by Liliana Plisca, Bianca Abrudean and Ancuta Gheorghe-Dan. In 2012 she was part of Deva junior team. She is a longilin, elegant gymnast, with beautiful posture, highly competitive on beam and uneven bars, needing a bit more work on the leg events. She turns senior in 2016.

Anda,best on beam at Nadia International


Andreea CiurusniucAndreea Ciurusniuc is one of the 3 Steaua gymnasts present at Izvorani, being a talented and dynamic athlete, with great potential on all apparatus. Being under centralized training since 2012,when she was selected for Deva junior team, she made a rapid technical improvement, learning a lot of new elements, and perfecting execution quality. She will be senior eligible in 2016.

A lively floor

IordacheLarisa Iordache is, as we know, our most complete gymnast. Athlete of Dinamo club, discovered by coach Mariana Cimpeanu Silisteanu, Larisa was part of Onesti and Deva junior teams before she was selected for Izvorani Olympic team. She is a multiple European champion and medalist at both junior and senior level and also a team bronze medalist at London Olympics.  She is excellent on beam, floor and vault and has great potential for uneven bars too. Being thought to be one of the best contenders for the all-around titles in London, Larisa could not defend her chances being hampered by a leg injury. “She has explosion and speed. She is a mix of acrobatic complexity and artistic qualities ” (Mariana Bitang). 2013 is her second year as a senior.

Lari’s most recent gold

Andreea IridonAndreea Iridon, one of the most complete gymnasts of the new generation, comes from CNS Cetate Deva club, and was coached by  Adela Popa and Ioan Coroiu. She is an elegant, flexible gymnast with nice extension, she excels on beam and uneven bars but is also competitive on vault and floor. She has yet to gain on consistency. She is one to remember! Becomes senior in 2015.

Complexity and precision – Andreea on uneven bars

Sandra IzbasaThe well-known Sandra Izbasa, double Olympic champion does not need any presentation, we all know her special, unique qualities: she is elegant, powerful and unstoppable. We all learned through the years that we should never underestimate her.  Always adapting and besting herself, Sandra went through different stages: all-around gymnast, beam and floor specialist, floor specialist, vault and floor specialist and again all-around gymnast, every phase having its own medals. And now she still finds motivation and pleasure in doing gymnastics being an extraordinary model of determination and ambition for all little gymnasts  and for all of us.  She began gymnastics at Steaua club under the guidance of  Lia Ceampelea, Eliza Stoica, Angela Cacoveanu, Gheorghe Neagu, Marius Vintila  and Mariana Ristea.

A special floor

Laura JurcaLaura Jurca was part of a very valuable team of gymnasts from CNS Cetate Deva, coached by Adela Popa and Ioan Coroiu. She is a tiny yet powerful gymnast, with great acrobatic abilities. She is constantly improving on her artistic qualities as well. She is an extremely tenacious gymnast. Will be senior in 2015.

A champion’s floor performance

Teea MileaTeea Milea, currently the only Constanta girl in  Izvorani team, trained at Farul Constanta with coaches: Clementa Garabet, Daniela Maranduca Nicolai and Remus Nicolai. She is a beam and floor specialist being troubled by uneven bars in competitions although she is quite good in training. She will become senior in 2016.

An artist performance – Teea on floor

Andreea Munteanu Andreea Munteanu, multiple Junior European gymnast last year, represents CNS Cetate Deva club where she trained with  Mirela Dicu, Alexandru Militaru, Lenuta Slabu and Sorin Tolteanu. She was selected for Deva Junior team in 2011 and she made a fast and spectacular improvement, becoming one of the most appreciated young gymnasts in the world for the high quality of her executions. She is excellent on beam and floor, a good vaulter but needs to improve on bars. She will be senior  in 2014.

Andreea – a great floor performance

Ioana NicoaraIoana Nicoara is also a CNS Cetate Deva club athlete. She has worked with coaches: Alexandru Militaru, Lenuta Slabu, Sorin Tolteanu and later with Ioan Coroiu and Adela Popa. She is a longilin, elegant and flexible gymnast who improved a lot in the last years. With a bit more confidence she could overcome the completion hesitations that are hindering her. She will be eligible for senior competitions in 2014.

Improving on uneven bars

Ana Maria OcolisanAna Maria Ocolisan, also from CNS Cetate Deva club, student of Alexandru Militaru, Lenuta Slabu, Sorin Tolteanu, is one of the 2 seniors promoted to Izvorani team this year. She is a complete, 4 events gymnast, very clean and precise. She needs to add difficulty to her routines if she wants to be competitive in the international scene.

Concentration and precision – Ana on beam

Asiana Li-Da PengAsiana Peng, the little gymnast from CNS Cetate Deva is one of our biggest hopes for Rio 2016. She was trained at Deva by Cristinel Micu, Gina Gogean, Luciana Rusan, Lenuta Slabu, Ioan Coroiu and Adela Popa. She is a very pleasant gymnast, with polished, beautiful execution, explosive and graceful in the same time. The raise in difficulty  will make her a threat for  any international event. She will become senior in the Olympic year.

Asiana, champion’s refinement

Stefania Alina StanilaStefania Stanila, the other new senior of the team, comes also from CNS Cetate Deva where she trained under Mirela Dicu, Alexandru Militaru, Lenuta Slabu and Sorin Tolteanu. She is a Junior European medalist last year, a valuable, powerful gymnast, under technical improvement, more competitive on vault and floor, having very promising acrobatic abilities.

A complex floor routine

Andra StoicaAndra Stoica, a Dinamo club athlete, prepared by coach Mariana Cimpeanu Silisteanu was part of Onesti and later Deva junior teams, where she mastered a great array of skills. She is a powerful, energetic although small gymnast. She is less known,  having a limited competitive experience, but she has what it takes to become a big name of  Romanian gymnastics. She’ll be senior in the Olympic year.

A valuable beam

Diana TeodoruDiana Teodoru, the only athlete of  SCM Bacau  present at  Izvorani, club coached by Corneliu and Vasilica Agop, is a gymnast that improved a lot over the last years while training at Onesti and Deva junior teams. She is powerful and energetic. She has yet to gain some consistency but this can only come with experience which in her case is quite limited at the moment. She turns senior next year.

Rhythm and energy

Paula Cristina TudorachePaula Tudorache, Dinamo club athlete, discovered and guided by Adriana Musat and Anca Draghici is a special gymnast, very elegant and graceful. She is a beam and bars specialist. By exploiting her artistic potential she can become competitive on floor too. She is in her last year as a junior.

Grace and expressivity

Cristina VrabieCristina Vrabie, a student of  Steaua Bucharest team of coaches (Eliza Stoica, Angela Cacoveanu and Gheorghe Neagu) is a very talented, longilin, elegant gymnast, with clean execution. She has real shots of making the Olympic team being capable of improvement on all events. She’ll be senior in 2016.

A stylish floor

Silvia ZarzuSilvia Zarzu, one of ours most valuable junior gymnasts, comes from CSM Onesti where she trained with Ileana Hrisca, Luminita Eftimiu and Eugen Grosu. She is a dynamic, charismatic gymnast, strong on floor, vault and beam. She does not have great bars abilities but she can improve on her strongest apparatus becoming a specialist for event finals.

Silvery performance at last year’s Euros

The coaching staff has also renewed: Octavian Bellu, Mariana Bitang, Ioan Coroiu, Alexandru Militaru, Cristian Moldovan, Lacramioara Moldovan, Adela Popa and Lucian Sandu are now the coaches in charge.

Oct 022012

Laura Jurca

General Info

Name: Laura Jurca
Born: 14 September 1999
Club: SSV Ulm
CNS Cetate Deva (until 2017)
STV Lenzburg (double affiliation 2010-2011)
Deva club coaches: Ioan Coroiu, Adela Popa
Ulpia Barbu (first coach)
Izvorani Olympic Team member 2013-206
Izvorani Olympic Team coaches: Octavian Bellu (head coach), Maria Bitang (head coach), Ioan Coroiu, Alexandru Militaru (2013), Cristian Moldovan, Lacramioara Moldovan, Adela Popa, Lucian Sandu
Deva Olympic Team member 2016-207
Deva Olympic Team coaches: Liliana Cosma, Florin Cotutiu, Nicolae Forminte (head coach), Daniela Maranduca Nicolai, Remus Nicolai, Adela Popa

Competition Results

  • 2017: Saintegym Cup, St.Etienne – 8th place with team Romania; Senior Nationals – 1st place with team CNS Cetate Deva, 5th place UB and VT; World Cup Szombathely (FIG World Challenge Cup, C III) – 6th place UB
  • 2015: Challenge Cup, Doha (FIG World Challenge Cup, C III) – 2nd place FX, 4th place UB and BB;  European Championships, Montpellier – 7th place AA; Trofeo 4 Nazzioni, Torino – 3rd place with team Romania, 7th place AA; European Games, Baku – 7th place with team Romania, 9th place AA;  Senior Nationals – 2nd place with team CNS Cetate Deva I, 6th place AA, 2nd place UB, 3rd place FX; Novara Cup – 1st place with team Romania, 7th place AA; World Championships, Glasgow – 13th place with team Romania, 8th place AA; Elite Gym Massilia, Marseille – 3rd place with team Romania, 8th place AA, 1st place VT and BB
  • 2014Trofeo Citta di Jesolo – 2nd place with team Romania, 4th place AA, 2nd place FX, 3rd place VT, 8th place UB; Friendly Meet Fra-Bel-Rou, Avoine – 1st place with team Romania, 3rd place AA;  Junior European Championships, Sofia  bronze medal with team Romania, silver medal all-around, silver medal vault, 5th place FX; Youth Olympic Games, Nanjing – 7th place AA, 4th place VT, 7th place UB, 8th place BB, 4th place FX
  • 2013: L’International Gymnix, Montreal – 7th place with team Romania; Trofeo Citta di Lugano – 7th place AA; Friendly Meet Fra-Rou, Andrezieux-Boutheon – 1st place with team Romania, 7th place AA, 3rd place VT, 5th place FX; Junior Team Nationals – 1st place with team CNS Cetate Deva, 2nd AA score (category II, level 5); European Youth Olympic Festival, Utrechtbronze medal with team Romania, 7th place AA, silver medal vault, 6th place beam; Senior Nationals – 1st place with team CNS Cetate Deva I, 6th place AA, 1st place VT, 4th place FX
  • 2012: School Nationals – 1st place with team CNS Cetate Deva, 2nd place AA, 1st place VT, 2nd place BB, 3rd place FX, 4th place UB (category II, level 5); Gymnova Cup, Keerbergen – 1st place with team CNS Cetate Deva, 4th place AA (Juniors category), 2nd place FX, 4th place VT; Gym Festival, Trnava – 1st place with team CNS Cetate Deva (Adela Florea); Junior Team Nationals – 1st place with team CNS Cetate Deva, 2nd AA score (category II, level 5); Hamburg Gymnastics Cup – 1st place with team CNS Cetate Deva; Junior Individual Nationals – 2nd place UB (category II, level 5); Senior Nationals – 5th place with team CNS Cetate Deva II, 4th place VT, 7th place FX (hopefuls division)
  • 2011School Nationals – 1st place with team CNS Cetate Deva, 2nd place AA, 2nd place UB and BB, 3rd place VT, 5th place FX (category III, level 4);  Aargau Gymnastics Championship, Lenzburg – 1st place with team STV Lenzburg, 1st place AA, 1st place BB and FX, 3rd place UB, 4th place VT (category P4); Swiss Junior Nationals, Ruti – 4th place with AG representative team, 3rd place AA, 1st place FX, 6th place BB (category P4); Junior Team Nationals – 1st place with team CNS Cetate Deva, 4th AA score (category III, level 4); Swiss Team Nationals, Niederlinz – 1st place with AG1 representative team; Hamburg Gymnastics Cup – 1st place with team CNS Cetate Deva; Junior Individual Nationals – 1st place AA, VT, BB and FX, 3rd place UB (category III, level 4); Alpen Adria Cup, Klagenfurt – 1st place with team CNS Cetate Deva, 2nd place AA (juniorinnenstufe category); Krstic & Dzelatovic Memorial Tournament, Novi Sad – 1st place AA, 1st place UB and BB, 2nd place VT, 5th place FX (category 2, 11-13 year olds)
  • 2010School Nationals – 1st place with team CNS Cetate Deva I, 4th place AA, 5th place UB, 4th place FX (category III, level 3); Gym Cup, Linderhof – 2nd place with team STV Lenzburg, 8th place AA (category P4); Aargau Gymnastics Championship, Mohlin – 3rd place AA (6th VT score, 5th UB score, 2nd BB score, 4th BB score) (category P4);  Swiss Nationals Qualification Competition, Meggen – 1st place AA (category P4); Swiss Junior Nationals, Uetendorf – 8th place AA, 2nd place FX, 3rd place BB, 4th place UB (category P4)DKMT Cup, Deva -6th AA score – outside of competition (category 11-13 year olds); Junior Team Nationals – 1st place with team CNS Cetate Deva I, 3rd AA score (category III, level 3);  Junior Individual Nationals – 1st place AA, 3rd place BB, 6th place VT (category III, level 3); Alpen Adria Cup, Klagenfurt – 2nd place AA (jugendstufe category)
  • 2009School Nationals – 2nd place with team CNS Cetate Deva, 11th place AA (category IV, level 2); “Little Gymnast” Nationals  – 2nd place with team CNS Cetate Deva, 27th place AA (category IV, level 2); Alpen Adria Cup, Klagenfurt – 7th place AA (nachwuchsstufe category)

Photo Gallery

  • 2013 Senior Nationals, Bucuresti (© Dan Mares)
  • 2013 European Youth Olympic Festival, Utrecht (© Jan de Koning)
  • Team Final
  • All-around
  • Event Finals
  • 2013 Junior Team Nationals, Onesti (© Dan Mares)
  • 2013 Friendly Meet Fra-Rou, Andrezieux-Boutheon (© Benoit Bonatre)
  • Team/All-around
  • Event Finals
  • 2013 Trofeo Citta di Lugano (© Petre Oprea)
  • 2012 Senior Nationals, Onesti
  • Team Final (© Dan Mares)
  • Apparatus Finals (© Dan Mares)
  • 2012 Junior Individual Nationals, Deva (© Dan Mares)
  • 2011 Hamburg Gymnastics Cup
  • Day 1 (© D.R. Photographie – photo 1; © Petre Oprea – photo 2-3)
  • Day 2 (© DR Photographie – photo 1-2; © Petre Oprea – photo 3)
  • 2011 Swiss Team Nationals, Niederlinz (© Petre Oprea)
  • 2011 Junior Team Nationals, Deva (© Petre Oprea)
  • 2011 Aargau Gymnastics Championship, Lenzburg (© Petre Oprea)
  • 2010 Alpen Adria Cup, Klagenfurt (© Alpen Adria Cup)
  • 2010 Swiss Junior Nationals, Uetendorf (© Petre Oprea)
  • 2010 Swiss Nationals Qualification Competition, Meggen (© Petre Oprea)
  • 2010 Aargau Gymnastics Championship, Mohlin (© Petre Oprea)
  • Other Photos (© Tare!)