Dooley, Gluckstein Win World Cup Series Synchro Title
By Luan Peszek
Photo ©Ron Wyatt
Logan Dooley of Lake Forest, Calif., and Steven Gluckstein of Atlantic Highlands, N.J., won the FIG's World Cup Series title for synchronized trampoline, a first for the United States. They took top honors for the seven-event series based on their one silver- and two gold-medal finishes.
"Logan and Steven have just been incredible, and this is an outstanding accomplishment," said Steve Penny, president of USA Gymnastics. "We are so encouraged about their results both individually and as a team. They are raising the bar for trampoline in the United States, and are to be commended on their hard work and dedication."
The duo clinched the Series crown by winning the synchronized trampoline title at the World Cup in Albacete, Spain, and the Nissen Cup in Davos Switzerland, as well as finishing second at the World Cup in Loule, Portugal.
We caught up with the guys after they learned they won the series and here's what they had to say.
USA Gymnastics: When and how did you learn that you had won the series and how did you feel?
Steven Gluckstein: After we won our second World Cup of the year (third of our career) we pretty much knew we were going to be ranked top three. After winning the silver medal in Portugal, I looked at the rankings and saw number one. I was ecstatic! However, I knew it wasn't over; there was one more World Cup that the French pair (in second place) was competing at. If they won the competition they would take the World Cup Series, if not, then we had it. After I heard they did not win, I knew we took it, and I couldn't be happier. This is our biggest accomplishment thus far, for us and our country. We love "first", 'first' ever and 'first' place!
Logan Dooley: When the results of the final World Cup competition were posted, I was coaching at the ODP camp in Northern California. I had been tracking the results on my iPhone, so I knew that Steven and I had maintained our first-place ranking before the official results were announced. Our national team coordinator, Shaun Kempton, came up to me with congratulations on winning the 2010 World Cup Series, and immediately announced to the whole group that Steven and I had achieved another "first" for USA Gymnastics by winning the Synchro World Cup series. Realizing that this was, in fact, a milestone accomplishment for USA Trampoline was both exciting and humbling.
USA Gymnastics: What was most memorable for you while competing in the World Cup series?
Steven Gluckstein: World Cups are always fun. The most memorable part of competing at this year's World Cup Series was standing on the podium in Spain. Although the podium is only about 3 feet high, it felt like we were on top of everything. At this competition we were undefeated, 3 for 3.
Logan Dooley: I think the most notable memory of this World Cup win is the fact that this victory was achieved by competing in only three of the seven events scheduled. Each Synchro team had the option of competing in all seven events, while accumulating their top four scores. Steven and I took gold in two of the events (Switzerland and Spain), and silver in the Portugal World Cup, which gave us a total score of 140 points -- beating second-place France by 24 points.
USA Gymnastics: Did you do anything to celebrate?
Steven Gluckstein: I didn't really do much to celebrate; I immediately messaged Ann Sims, my coach Tatiana Kovaleva, and Shaun Kempton. They were all just as excited as I was. No time to celebrate with World Championships coming up!
Logan Dooley: We haven't had a chance to celebrate yet. We're still focusing on our training for the upcoming World Championships.
USA Gymnastics: How often do you two train together? I know Logan trains in California and you train in New Jersey so how do you train synchro being so far apart?
Steven Gluckstein: Logan and I do not train together, only at competitions; however this year it feels like every two weeks! We see each other roughly every 5-6 weeks depending on the time of the year. As far as how we do it, I prepare myself and he prepares himself, syncing it up is something we just naturally have.
Logan Dooley: Obviously, with us living on opposite coasts, we don't have an opportunity to train together very often. We have some limited time to practice our synchro routines together during our pre-competition training camps -- and then we run through the routines during the competition warm-ups. However, since we have very similar jumping styles and timing, as well as similar body shapes, it doesn't take much time for us to get our routines synchronized.
USA Gymnastics: What is your next goal in the sport?
Steven Gluckstein: Short-term goals are to make finals at this World Championships and medal at as many World Cups, individually and synchronized, as possible. I hope to make finals at 2011 World Championships and qualify a spot to the Olympic Games, attend the Games and medal.
Logan Dooley: The upcoming World Championships will be our next big competition -- and we're hoping to bring home some hardware!
USA Gymnastics: What is your training schedule like each day?
Steven Gluckstein: I train Monday through Saturday a little over three hours a day. I usually end up staying closer to four hours, if you include warming up and conditioning.
Logan Dooley: My weekly training schedule includes 1.5 hours of conditioning three days a week at Sports Performance Academy, and four hours of trampoline training each day at World Elite Gymnastics, working to perfect my competition routines and to continue to learn new skills to increase my degree of difficulty.
USA Gymnastics: What is the best thing about competing trampoline?
Steven Gluckstein: This is one of the hardest questions, but I will try my best to narrow it down. The best thing about competing trampoline is the feeling you get from success and self-accomplishment. When you reach your goals and even exceed them, you get a feeling that can't be expressed in words -- the best way to put it is pride. Being proud of yourself, your family, your country, and your gym; and at that moment absolutely nothing could bring you down.
Logan Dooley: For me, the best thing about competing in trampoline is the fact that there is no limit to what can be achieved -- you can jump higher, you can flip and twist faster, you can finish stronger with each and every competition.
USA Gymnastics: Thank you Steven and Logan for taking your time to answer our questions and congratulations again on all of your success! Good luck at the World Championships!