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Lopez to Compete in Nadia Comaneci International Invitational
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Two-time Olympian Jessica Lopez of Venezuela headlines the international elite session of the 2013 Nadia Comaneci International Invitational in Oklahoma City, Okla., Sat., Feb. 16, at 7 p.m. Lopez competed in the 2008 Beijing Olympics, and placed 18th in the all-around final at the London games last summer.

The competition, which features junior and senior divisions on an Olympic-style podium at the Cox Arena, will also include teams from Romania, Canada, Brazil, Indonesia and the U.S.

Canada is well represented with Gemini Gymnastics, coached by 1980 Olympic all-around champion Yelena Davydova, and Dynamo Gymnastics, coached by two-time Olympic gold medalist Elvira Saadi (1972, ’76, team gold, USSR).

Romania will be represented by four juniors, coached by Eliza Stoica, Marius Vintila and Cristian Moldovan. Junior national champion Asiana Peng is among the talents.

Brazil and Indonesia are newcomers to this competition, which in the past has included gymnasts from Australia, Great Britain, Israel, Japan, Kazakhstan, Mexico, Russia and Ukraine.

The inaugural event, in 2009, was won by Romanian legend Sandra Izbasa, the 2008 Olympic floor exercise champion and the 2012 Olympic vault gold medalist. Other past all-around champions: Kristina Vaculik (2010), Anysia Unick (2011) and Mackenzie Brannan (2012).

Each year the elite field has included at least one Olympian or Olympian-to-be. Victoria Moors helped Canada win the 2011 team competition, and Imogen Cairns was part of Great Britain's team last year. Both gymnasts, as well as Vaculik, competed in the London Olympics last summer.

The Nadia Comaneci International Invitational is a signature event of The Bart & Nadia Sports & Health Festival, which includes a wide variety of health and fitness activities for people of all ages. The weekend also includes the Bart Conner International Invitational, one of the most prestigious competitions in the country for boys.

For more information about all the events in Oklahoma City this weekend, click here.

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