Simone Biles Finds 20th World Title “Different” Yet “Exciting”

Simone Biles Finds 20th World Title "Different" Yet "Exciting"

Simone Biles expresses that winning her 20th world championship gold medal feels “just as good as the first one” as she continues her remarkable return to the sport.

In a historic victory for the US at the World Artistic Gymnastics Championships in Antwerp, Belgium, Biles played a pivotal role in securing the women’s team final. Her impressive floor routine secured the US’s seventh consecutive world title in the women’s team discipline. Notably, this latest world title comes exactly a decade after her first win at the same venue in 2013.

Simone Biles Finds 20th World Title "Different" Yet "Exciting"
Simone Biles Finds 20th World Title “Different” Yet “Exciting”

Biles shared her thoughts, stating, “I think each and every time you are crowned world champion, it feels a little bit different. I mean I’m still surprised that I’m still going. I’m 26, I’m a little bit older, so it feels just as good as the first one. Just because we broke records, we came together, we had a fight. It’s different, but it’s exciting.”

At 26, Biles is considered a veteran in the sport and boasts an impressive collection of medals. As the most decorated gymnast in US history, she has now secured 26 world championship medals, including 20 gold, three silver, and three bronze.

Furthermore, Biles has tied with Belarusian Vitaly Scherbo for the most overall medals (33) across both the Olympics and world championships.

Reflecting on her journey, Biles noted, “I’m not like 16 anymore. I’m 26. Everything feels different. I feel like I’m thinking a little bit more about my gymnastics. It’s not so carefree.”

By participating in Antwerp this time, Biles became the first woman to represent the US at six artistic world gymnastics championships.

Her remarkable achievements in Belgium include making history on the competition’s opening day by successfully executing the Yurchenko double pike vault, a high-difficulty skill previously performed only by men in international competitions.

Former US gymnast Dominique Dawes expressed her admiration, calling Biles’ achievements “spectacular” and praising her for enjoying the journey and fostering a positive attitude within the team.

Dawes, a three-time Olympian and part of the “Magnificent Seven,” highlighted how Biles’ openness about her struggles with mental health during the Tokyo 2020 Olympics had a significant impact on the sport. She predicted that Biles could qualify for the next two Olympic teams, with the potential to compete in the 2028 Paris Olympics.

Before that, Biles has more opportunities to add to her impressive collection of world championship medals, with upcoming events including the women’s individual all-around final, vault, uneven bars, balance beam, and floor exercise finals.

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