Gymnasts that never reached their potential: Part 2 - Sabina Cojocar

Sabina was the wunderkind of the Romanian National team of 2001. Her big debut took place at the 2001 Goodwill games. It was a huge debut because she won the All Around over Khorkina and Zamolodcikova. And if for Khorkin, who fell on BB, it was more of a competition of testing new skills (she fell on a full twist on the beam – skill that she never managed to master and to present in competition ever again), for Zamo there was no such excuse. That is why we are entitled to say that, the 15 year old Sabina Cojocar, had a huge debut as a senior.

But few were the ones for whom this was a surprise. Sabina was the Junior European AA Champion of 2000. She won that title over some more notorious gymnasts nowadays: Pavlova, Elena Gomez, Verona Van Deleur and Beth Tweddle. In the same competition she won the vault and the BB, placing second on floor.In the following year, at the worlds, she finished sixth in the AA, and fourth on beam. More importantly, she has contributed to the Romanian team’s gold, a medal Octavian Bellu, thanked Sabina for later, when he entered the Guiness book of records as the most medaled Coach of all times .

2001 ended with a shoulder surgery for Sabina, and the recovery was not regarded with optimism by anyone. Sabina was sent back home, to train at the local gym club, when the Romanian team was dissolved in 2002. She was asked to represent Romania again later that year, at the Worlds in Debrecen, Hungary. A fifth place on the Vault was Sabina’s top result that year. She also showed good a floor exercise, although she didn’t manage to qualify for the finals.

Her career seemed to be on the right track, she was the usual presence in International competitions, a very appreciated member of the Romanian team. No one expected what was to happen next year.

During 2002 Sabina kept complaining to her coaches of the fact that she wasn’t feeling well, she said she felt weak, without strength, finding it more and more difficult to concentrate on training. She was accused of being lazy and moody. No one believed her, until 2003 when she was diagnosed with a chronic liver problem. This came from that fact that she was treated for aHypercholesterolemia in 2000 and prescribed Zocor. The medicine was not intended for use by children, and had several serious side effects for Cojocar.

Sabina Cojocar retired in 2003.

Now, when she’s asked of gymnastics, after the many achievements, she mentiones her big regret. She says she misses the sport but still can’t watch gymnastics competitions. „The dream of any gymnast is to go to the Olympics. It hurts that I had to retire befor reaching that dream. Unfortunately, my health did not allow me to go to Athens. I would always start training again provided that I finish what I started: getting an Olympic medal”.

After giving up gymnastics, Sabina Cojocar has tried to build a musical career. From what I know, she has recoded two songs: „I don’t want to lose you” and „Nobody’s home” and a collaboration with a Romanian singer, Mihai Trastariu, with whom she sang in a few concerts.

Cojocar has written her own lyrics and she says that she wants to continue doing that because they represent what she feels. Her goal is to manage to compose her own music but only after she has learned enough. She has an agent and a canto teacher so she is very serious of her plans of becoming a singer.

No comments: