Indeed, Dominique's initial reaction last weekend to having attained her first senior win was, "It's more fun in the seniors. I liked it."
Bright and charming, Dominique no doubt will feel the weight of the world on her shoulders one day not too far in the future. Whether by the 1996 Olympics she will be America's best gymnast or merely among the best of what is shaping up to be a very talented team remains to be seen. But the former is the goal. Dominique performs older than she looks. Her hand movements on the beam, for example, are not those of a 13-year-old. The way she carries her head, her facial expressions, her swagger, if you will, all conspire to convince us there is an older person inside that tiny body. And, as she proved last Friday night while pretending to play Let's Twist Again on the piano during her winning floor exercise routine, she knows how to preen for a crowd. "I want people to remember me for being happy and for my smile," Dominique says.
Karolyi believes the presence of Boguinskaia has been a contributing factor in Dominique's recent progress. "Dominique's matured so fast next to Svetlana," he says. "All of a sudden, this little thing, her head is up. She's smiling. It's very promising."