The female Olympic gymnast Simone Biles who first stunned the world back in 2016 is only getting better—and shattering records in the process.
The 22-year-old American sensation easily won her 6th national all-round title over the weekend, landing some never-before-seen maneuvers both on the balance beam and her floor routine.
On Friday, she ended what would otherwise be considered a lackluster balance beam routine with a double-twist, double somersault landing—a first in the world of women’s gymnastics. Her smile spoke volumes after—the routine was salvaged.
On Sunday, Biles came into the competition with a comfortable lead with plans to pull off another first.
Biles’s coach, Laurent Landi, gave her the option of whether she would attempt a triple-twist, double on the floor routine—taking home the title was all but assured by that point—but for Biles, the choice was obvious: to take the risk and go for the gusto.
She pulled off the triple double as the first move on the floor before pretty much nailing the rest of the routine—as per usual.
The historic achievement came after a disappointing failed attempt on the uneven bars two days earlier, which ended in a dismal double hand plant. Biles’s seething anger at the performance was written all over her face.
So, she decided to risk it all in order to regain her confidence on Sunday.
Needless to say, her recent triple-double on the floor put the wind back in her sails. It’s a move not even the men’s sport has yet seen.
“I was a lot happier today,” Biles said. “I feel I haven’t been as confident on bars this year as I was last year. To finally do a good routine like I can do it, I was really happy. I was very happy and the last event, so I was like, ‘Thank God we’re done.’”
Biles won easily with a score of 118.500, surpassing second place holder Sunisa Lee with a score of 113.550 and Grace McCallum with a score of 111.850 in third place.
Biles’s recent title is the first time a woman has won a 6th national, all-round title in gymnastics in 70 years. The last American to garner that achievement was Clara Schroth in 1952.
It was no less of a treat for those in attendance. Both teammates and officials were left awestruck, witnessing a rare titan in the sport.
“It’s like she hit a hole in one and we were all there,” said USA Gymnastics high-performance director Tom Forster. “It’s a big deal and we all know it. No one in the world has done it before in the women and actually, she does it better than most of the men who have done it. She should be super excited about that.”
When Biles first blew on the scene, she took the sport by storm in Rio in 2016, pulling off a near-perfect demonstration of women’s gymnastics for two whole weeks.
Now, she’s even better.
Ahead of the four-time gold medalist are the World Championships in two months and—the big one—the 2020 Olympics one year from now in Tokyo.
In case you need a refresher, check out Simone Biles’s gold-medal performance during the 2016 Rio Olympics: