6 Things to Know About Gymnast Bart Conner

Olympic Gymnasts Bart Connor and Nadia Comaneci
Greg Doherty / Contributor / Getty Images
01
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He Was on the 1984 Men's Olympic Team

In 1984, Conner was a huge part of the US men's team that won the Olympic gold medal, in front of the hometown crowd in Los Angeles. They became national heroes -- and no US men's team has matched that feat since.

Conner also won the gold on parallel bars, earning a perfect 10.0 on that event twice during the competition.

02
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He Was a Member of Three Olympic Teams

Though Conner is well-known as a member of the 1984 team, he also qualified onto both the 1976 and 1980 Olympic teams. In 1976 he was the youngest member of the squad that placed seventh in Montreal.

In 1980, the US boycotted the Olympic Games in Moscow, and Conner (and all the other US athletes) were not able to compete.

03
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He Was a World Champion as Well

Conner won the 1979 world title on the parallel bars, and earned bronze on vault and with the team. On p-bars, he edged his teammate and longtime rival Kurt Thomas for the gold.

Also part of his gymnastics resume: Connor won three American Cup all-around titles, in 1976, 1981 and 1982. This tied the most of any male gymnast in history until Blaine Wilson won five (1997, 1998, 1999, 2001 and 2003.)

04
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He's Married to the Queen of Gymnastics

Conner is married to gymnastics legend Nadia Comaneci, the most famous gymnast in the sport. Comaneci won the all-around at the 1976 Olympics, but may be best-known for earning the first perfect 10.0 in Olympic competition. (She went on to earn seven 10.0s at the 1976 Games.)

The couple first met at the 1976 American Cup, where Conner won the men's title and Comaneci, the women's. They were married in 1996 in Bucharest, Romania, and have a son, Dylan, born in 2006.

05
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He Is Still Very Involved in the Sport

Conner and Comaneci own the Bart Conner Gymnastics Academy, and have both done TV commentary as well. Conner has done mainstream TV coverage for ABC and ESPN, among others.

They are also involved with International Gymnast magazine, Perfect 10 Productions, Inc. and Grips, Etc., a gymnastics supplies store.

Conner has played himself in two gymnastics movies: Stick It and Peaceful Warrior.

06
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He Was a Collegiate Superstar

Bart Conner was born on March 28, 1958 in Morton Grove, Illinois. He qualified onto his first Olympic team in 1976 shortly after graduating high school, then went on to compete for the University of Oklahoma at the collegiate level.

At Oklahoma he was coached by Paul Ziert, who became a lifelong friend and business partner. Conner gave his son, Dylan, the middle name "Paul" after Ziert.

Conner was a star in NCAA gymnastics, winning the Nissen Award in his senior season, given to the top male collegiate athlete. Other winners include Olympians Sam Mikulak (2014), Jonathan Horton (2008), and Blaine Wilson (1997), as well as Conner's 1984 Olympic teammates Peter Vidmar (1983) and Jim Hartung (1982).

07
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Conner's Gymnastics Results

1984 Olympic Games, Los Angeles, California, USA: 1st team; 1st parallel bars
1982 American Cup, New York, New York, USA: 1st all-around
1981 American Cup, Fort Worth, Texas, USA: 1st all-around
1979 World Championships, Fort Worth, Texas, USA: 3rd team; 3rd vault; 1st parallel bars
1976 American Cup, New York, New York, USA: 1st all-around
1975 Pan American Games, Mexico City, Mexico: 3rd floor; 3rd rings