September 01, 2002

Gymnastic Superstar

Gymnast Lyudmila Turishcheva was born on October 7, 1952—50 years ago. Turishcheva won every imaginable title in gymnastics, both on the world stage and nationally. She was all-around Olympic Champion in the individual competition in 1972 (Munich), and won gold in the team competition in 1968 (Mexico), 1972 (Munich) and 1976 (Montreal). But unquestionably her shining moment was in Munich, where she shared the limelight with another star of Soviet gymnastics, the gracious Olga Korbut from the Belorussian Republic.

Born in Grozny (capital of Chechnya) Turischeva came to see coach Vladislav Rastorotsky in 1963. He quickly recognized in her great talent and an iron will. Shortly after the 1976 Olympics, Turischeva quit sports and married  Valery Borzov, 1972 gold medalist in the 100 and 200 meter sprints. The two now live and work in Ukraine, where Turishcheva heads the Ukrainian Gymnastics Federation.

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