Latest Nationality Changes

Some fairly significant ones

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Claire THOMPSON – TRA judge – Former: GBR / New: IRL
Daria TRAKHTENBERG – RG judge – Former: ISR / New: USA
Emily Kate BEZNOS – RG gymnast – Former: USA / New: MDA
Anastasia SIMAKOVA * – RG gymnast – Former: RUS / New: GER
Eddie PENEV – MAG gymnast – Former: USA / New: BUL


Maybe that will work out for Eddie Penev. He hasn’t made a major team in a long while, right? And after the OTC shut down he was training at Air Force. Maybe he will get monetary support from Bulgaria.


Simakova is interesting, Russia basically threw her out with the bathwater.
When is her drug positive drug ban concluded?
Germany could definitely use her if she is at full strength as she was when she competed for Russia.

The furosemide ban was Angelina Simakova (WAG). This is the Irina Viner trained RG gymnast Anastasia Simakova.

Do you struggle to tell the difference between KJ and Kiya Johnson too?! :joy:

NB: The Simakov family moved to Germany last year as part of a “repatriation scheme” for Russians of German origin. Like I mean if there were 2 countries I wouldn’t trust to “repatriate” anyone…

Ah ok…totally didn’t read it accurately and just saw Simakova and my brain went to WAG not RG.

I actually struggle to tell the difference between KJ Johnson and KJ Kindler!

That makes some sense, but he has been out of college for 10 years. I think he was wanting to compete for USA but Bulgaria makes more sense now for sure.

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Right…JDB said he originally switched to USA due to NCAA. But he is no longer in NCAA so it makes better sense to go back to Bulgaria. If his goal is Worlds or Olympics again, he has zero chance in the US, Bulgaria would be much much easier for him to make their World team.

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Oh, I agree. Just not sure why he waited so long other than hoping to make it for the USA

Um… Eddie graduated from Stanford 10 years ago! NCAA has absolutely nothing to do with his switch to Bulgaria. Nothing. He was never going to compete anymore for Team USA. Since 2017, he’s basically been injured and hasn’t competed internationally for Team USA since then.He was asked repeatedly if he was going to switch to Bulgaria since before Rio. They weren’t going to put him at that team. He said, no. I’m still going to try for the USA.
It was time for him to move on. I wish him well. He’s still so very good.


Go back and read @JDB post again. He stated that Penev made the switch to USA while in the NCAA due to conflict with NCAA and Bulgaria NT schedules. Since Penev hasn’t been an NCAA athlete, there is no longer an impediment to be a member of the Bulgarian team, so making the switch back to Bulgaria is the better option now because there is no chance for him to be included on a USA team.

Sure. I understand that. But he’s been out of NCAA since 2013. It’s been 10 years!

After being left off teams for the last years it was either retire or switch nationalities. Maybe he thought following Rio he would have a chance to represent USA at Tokyo as he landed a spot on the 2017 World Team.
After not being named to Worlds in 2021 after winning floor gold and vault silver in addition to USOTC closing down, perhaps these events forced him to make a decision to go back to Bulgaria, especially with lots of talent on the USA MAG team, there was zero chance of him being able to compete for USA again, at least at the World and Olympic level.


Yes, but @JDB talks complete rubbish on a large variety of topics and has some very, very strange takes on things. So best taken with a large pinch of salt


Hey now, no attacking fellow posters.


He always got injured right before major competitions, too.
When he didn’t make any teams after winning gold and silver, he made accusations of ageism, among other things. While I understand his frustration, it’s difficult to be a “team” player if you’re being negative towards the “team”.
Basically, you can’t go on IG live and complain about USAG and the USOC and such and expect to be a part of it. I’m not saying he’s wrong but maybe do it privately.
Side note—He doesn’t live in Bulgaria. He back at his mom’s gym, RGA.

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I remember Gymcastic talking about his ranting about ageism.
I figured Penev wouldn’t move to Bulgaria, but I used “move” meaning competing for Bulgaria.


Caterina Cereghetti, Italy to Switzerland, and selected for Euros.

Not sure if this is related to the situation around her nearly being Worlds alternate for Italy last year.

The Italian team at the moment is very hard to break into

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