2008 Olympic Trials- thoughts on Bulgaria

Less than one month to Olympic Trials.

I am really excited to be lifting here, especially as they will be held at my alma mater – Georgia Tech.

This competition season has been more strenuous than normal. With the Olympic Year, American Open, Sr nationals, Collegiates, and Olympic Trials have all occurred with in a few weeks of each other. It is really interesting.. I wonder how things will play out as some lifters are waiting to “peak” at Olympic Trials.

Interestingly, when I was in Bulgaria and Romania earlier this Olympic year, neither country appeared to have a formal Olympic Trials or qualifyng meet.

In Bulgaria, it seemed as though lifters were named to teams based on their training up tot he meet. Some lifters would sit out meets such as the World Championships, due to injury, then be put on a long term training plan for the Olympics the following year.

Rather, instead of havng a series pf qulifyng meets, there is a network of coaches and athletes to fill teams. Inherently, there is flexibility in selecting athletes to teams and incentivization for athletes to continuously improve.

For example, it is interesting to see a lifter like Stefan Georgiev, in his thirties, reappear on the International scene. He competed at 2008 Europeans, and his prior Europeans was 2005. Though he trains in Slavia, he is required to train with the National team every 2 weeks or so.

Likewise, for a system like this to work well, all candidates for national teams and their coaches would need to be tightly networked back to a central organization selecting teams.

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