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U.S. Olympic Freestyle Training Camp in Colorado Springs, Colo., July 20-31


The 2000 U.S. Olympic Freestyle Wrestling Team will hold its first segment of Training Camp in Colorado Springs, Colo., July 20-31 at the U.S. Olympic Complex.

Training camp is mandatory for all U.S. Olympic team members. It will be the first time the members of the team that will represent the U.S. in Sydney will come together since the U.S. Olympic Team Trials in Dallas, Texas, June 22-24. Training camp will be conducted by the U.S. Olympic co-head coachesDan Gable of Iowa City, Iowa, John Smith of Stillwater, Okla., and Greg Strobel of Bethlehem, Pa., along with National Freestyle Coach Bruce Burnett of Colorado Springs, Colo.

Burnett said the first segment of Training Camp serves as an evaluation period for the coaches and athletes. The camp will be set up with daily morning and afternoon practices and video viewing sessions. The wrestlers and coaches also participate in USOC Media Training presented by The Speaking Specialist in order to better prepare for Sydney. There will be time allotted each day for members of the media to meet and interview wrestlers and coaches as well.

There are two segments of Training Camp in the United States for the Olympic Freestyle team. The second segment will also be held in Colorado Springs, Aug. 21-Sept. 2. The final segment of the training camp program will be held Sept. 17-23 in Canberra, Australia.

The 187.25-pound weight-class has not yet been determined for the U.S. Freestyle Olympic Team. 2000 U.S. Nationals Champion Les Gutches (Colorado Springs, Colo./Sunkist Kids) and 2000 U.S. Olympic Team Trials Champion Charles Burton (Bloomington, Ind./New York AC) will meet in a Special Wrestle-off in Fargo, N.D., July 27. The winner of this best-two-out-of-three series will determine who will represent the U.S. in Sydney. When this is determined the winner will join his teammates at Training Camp.

Gutches received an extension on his championship series due to injury. He was injured in training and could not compete in the U.S. Olympic Team Trials in Dallas, Texas, June 21-29. Only the 2000 U.S. Nationals Champion has the right to request an extension to a later date and site due to injury.

Other members of the National Freestyle Team and other talented training partners will attend Training Camp as well.

The U.S. Olympic Greco-Roman team will only hold one session of Training Camp in the United States to prepare for the Games in Sydney, Australia, Aug. 14-26 at the Training Center in Colorado Springs. The team will also participate in the Paddubny Tournament in Russia in early August. More information will be announced later.

2000 U.S. Olympic Freestyle Team Roster

54 kg/119 lbs. - Sammie Henson, Norman, Okla. (Sunkist Kids)

58 kg/127.75 lbs. - Terry Brands, Iowa City, Iowa (Hawkeye WC)

63 kg/138.75 lbs - Cary Kolat, Morgantown, W. Va. (Dave Schultz WC)

69 kg/152 lbs. - Lincoln McIlravy, Iowa City, Iowa (Gateway WC)

76 kg/167.5 lbs - Brandon Slay, Amarillo, Texas (Dave Schultz WC)

85 kg/187.25 lbs - Les Gutches, Corvallis, Ore. (Sunkist Kids) or Charles Burton, Bloomington, Ind. (New York AC)

97 kg/213.75 lbs. - Melvin Douglas, Mesa, Ariz. (Sunkist Kids)

130 kg/286 lbs. - Kerry McCoy, Bethlehem, Pa. (New York AC)

Co-Head Coaches - Dan Gable, Iowa City, Iowa, John Smith, Stillwater, Okla., Greg Strobel, Bethlehem, Pa.

National Freestyle Coach - Bruce Burnett, Colorado Springs, Colo.

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