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The Return of Olympic Champions and the Paris Chase – The University News

A historic milestone in the world of women’s gymnastics was reached on the evening of Saturday, May 18, when three Olympic all-around champions would compete in the same competition for the first time ever.

At the Core Hydration Classic in Hartford, Connecticut, Gabby Douglas, Simone Biles and Suni Lee all made a comeback to gymnastics in an attempt to be selected to compete for the United States again, this time at the 2024 Summer Olympics in Paris.

For those who don’t follow the sport, a gymnast’s career is typically shorter than that of other athletes due to the toll the years of training and competing take on their bodies. Most Olympic gymnasts compete in only one Olympic Games and very few appear within a second. The Core Hydration Classic was a major competition in the gymnastics world as three Olympic champions from three different Olympic Games competed in the same arena.

Douglas claimed her Olympic all-around gold medal at the 2012 London Olympics when she was just 16 years old. She also won gold in the team competition at the 2016 Rio Olympics and the 2012 Games. Now, at the age of 28, Douglas has returned to compete in what would be her third Olympic Games.

Unfortunately, Douglas fell twice during a competition on uneven bars during the Core Hydration Classic, her first event of four. This led her to withdraw from the rest of the competition, most likely due to safety concerns. While this wasn’t the performance she had hoped for, Douglas was looking forward to getting a shot at redemption at the U.S. Championships later this month. However, Douglas recently announced her withdrawal from the US Championships, citing an ankle injury suffered during training as the reason. This ends Douglas’s Olympic hopes for Paris 2024, but she has yet to announce her official retirement from the sport.

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Biles has been a dominant force in the sport for more than a decade, winning her Olympic all-around title at the Rio 2016 Games. She was also part of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic team and has won a total of seven medals between the two Games.

Often referred to as the “greatest of all time” in women’s gymnastics, Biles is now vying for a spot on what would be her third Olympic team. At the recent Core Hydration Classic, Biles claimed the all-around and floor titles, proving she is still the best in the competition and ready to represent the United States again at the Olympics.

At 21 years old, Lee is the youngest of these three champions who have made a post-Olympic comeback to gymnastics. Lee deserved it her all-around Olympic title at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, where she also took home a silver medal in the team competition and a bronze medal on the uneven bars. Lee then competed for Auburn for two seasons before returning to elite gymnastics and turning her focus to the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris.

At the Core Hydration Classic, Lee competed in three of the four events: vault, balance beam and floor exercise. She took first place on the balance beam and qualified for the upcoming U.S. Championships, where she will continue to prove she deserves a spot on the next Olympic team.

The Olympic Trials will take place at the end of June. The US has many strong candidates from which the selection committee will have to choose. Among these contenders are two more Olympians: Jade Carey and Jordan Chiles. They were part of the Tokyo 2020 team and now both have a chance to be selected for their second Olympic team.

The US has been presenting medal-winning teams in women’s gymnastics for years, and whichever five girls are selected for Paris 2024 will no doubt look to build on this success.

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