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Simone Biles competes on the balance beam at the U.S. Gymnastics Championships, Friday, Aug. 17, 2018, in Boston. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)
Published 08/11/19 | Reading Time 1 min 10 sec
By BWSTimes Staff
The 2016 Olympic and 2018 World all-around gymnastics champion Simone Biles became the first woman in nearly 70-years to win six senior U.S. all-around national titles at the 2019 USA Gymnastics Championship in Kansas City, Mo., making her America’s most decorated gymnast of all times.
In a two day competition, Biles introduced two never-competed skills into the sport of women’s gymnastics: on the balance beam, dismounting a full-full and on the floor-exercise mounting a triple-double.
During podium training, before the championship began, Simone broke down in a press conference when asked questions about her recent tweet, where she stated “The more I learn, the more I hurt. USAG failed us. USOC failed us. Many failed us. And they continue to fail us. Real and actual change isn’t easy but it’s clear there’s a lot more work that needs to be done.”
She responded in the live interview amid news reporters — saying, “I don’t mean to cry, but…it’s hard coming here for an organization and having had them fail us so many times.”
Simone Biles competes on the uneven bars at the U.S. Gymnastics Championships, Friday, Aug. 17, 2018, in Boston. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)
Wiping the tears from her eyes, she explained, “We’ve done everything that they asked us for, even when we didn’t want to, and they couldn’t do one damn job. You had one job, you literally had one job, and you couldn’t protect us.”
“I’m strong. I’ll get through it, but it’s hard,” she added.
Competing night-one as if rattled by the painful questions regarding the Larry Nassar sexual-abuse scandal, as well as USA Gymnastics and the USOC’s seemingly complicit role in not protecting the athletes, Simon performed flawlessly on night-two to the thousands of spectators who traveled across the country to watch the making of a legend.
“She’s immortal now,” 2008 Olympic all-around gold medalist and NBC Sports broadcaster Nastia Liukin said.
Simone now has her eyes set on the 2019 World Artistic Gymnastics Championship in Stuttgart, Germany in October.