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Vanya Gesheva

Full name: Vanya Atanasova Gesheva (-Tsvetkova)
Original name: Ваня Атанасова Гешева-Цветкова
Gender: Female
Height: 5'6" (167 cm)
Weight: 143 lbs (65 kg)
Born: June 6, 1960 in Brestovitsa, Plovdiv, Bulgaria
Affiliations: Levski Sofia, Sofia (BUL)
Country: BUL Bulgaria
Sport: Canoeing

Medals: 1 Gold, 2 Silver, 1 Bronze (4 Total)

Biography

In 1988, Vanya Gesheva became the first Bulgarian Olympian to win a complete set of Olympic medals. She combined a victory in the K-1 with a silver medal in the K-2 (together with Diana Paliyska) and a bronze medal in the K-4. Gesheva had débuted at the Olympics in Moscow, where she had earned a silver medal in the K-1 500 m, behind Birgit Fischer. A silver medallist at the 1983 World Championships, Gesheva missed the 1984 Olympics when Bulgaria joined the Eastern Bloc boycott. In 1986, with the dominant Fischer absent, Gesheva won her first international title, claiming the K-1 world title. At the Seoul Olympics, Schmidt did compete, but surprisingly lost to Gesheva in the final, by a narrow margin of just 0.12 seconds. Earlier in her career, Gesheva had also collected World Championship medals in the K-2 500 m (bronze in 1977 with the non-Olympian Diana Khristova and in 1986 with Diana Paliyska) and K-4 500 m (silver in 1978 with Natasha Petrova and the non-Olympians Velichka Mincheva and Iliana Nikolova). After her active career, Gesheva became a board member of the Bulgarian canoe federation, and chariman of the canoe section of her club, OSK Levski.

Results

Games Age City Sport Event Team NOC Rank Medal
1980 Summer 20 Moskva Canoeing Women's Kayak Singles, 500 metres Bulgaria BUL 2 Silver
1988 Summer 28 Seoul Canoeing Women's Kayak Singles, 500 metres Bulgaria BUL 1 Gold
1988 Summer 28 Seoul Canoeing Women's Kayak Doubles, 500 metres Bulgaria BUL 2 Silver
1988 Summer 28 Seoul Canoeing Women's Kayak Fours, 500 metres Bulgaria BUL 3 Bronze

Women's Kayak Singles, 500 metres

Games Age City Sport Country Phase Unit Rank T
1980 Summer 20 Moskva Canoeing Bulgaria Final Round 2 1:59.48
1980 Summer 20 Moskva Canoeing Bulgaria Round One Heat One 2 QU 1:58.40
1988 Summer 28 Seoul Canoeing Bulgaria Final Round 1 1:55.19
1988 Summer 28 Seoul Canoeing Bulgaria Semi-Finals Heat One 2 QU 1:56.26
1988 Summer 28 Seoul Canoeing Bulgaria Round One Heat One 1 QU/OB 1:55.44

Women's Kayak Doubles, 500 metres

Games Age City Sport Team NOC Partner Phase Unit Date T
1988 Summer 28 Seoul Canoeing Bulgaria BUL Diana Paliyska Final Round 1988-09-30 1:44.06
1988 Summer 28 Seoul Canoeing Bulgaria BUL Diana Paliyska Semi-Finals Heat One 1988-09-28 1:52.48
1988 Summer 28 Seoul Canoeing Bulgaria BUL Diana Paliyska Round One Heat One 1988-09-26 1:44.52

Women's Kayak Fours, 500 metres

Games Age City Sport Team NOC Phase Unit Date T
1988 Summer 28 Seoul Canoeing Bulgaria BUL Final Round 1988-10-01 1:42.63
1988 Summer 28 Seoul Canoeing Bulgaria BUL Round One Heat Two 1988-09-27 1:39.40