Games & medals
Rio de Janeiro 2016
|#14 r1/2||Gymnastics||Uneven Bars|
I'm not the next Usain Bolt or Michael Phelps. I'm the first Simone Biles."
Number of medals
5 Olympic medals
1 Olympic Games
Simone BILES biography
“I’m not the next Usain Bolt or Michael Phelps – I’m the first Simone Biles,” said the American gymnastic powerhouse at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, and her comment struck a chord. Still just 22, Biles is already in an extremely exclusive ‘legendary’ category of Olympians, occupied by the likes of the Jamaican sprinter and American swimmer. She is already the greatest gymnast that ever lived. But she’s also doing it her own way.
Biles rose to fame in 2013 – winning two World Championship golds aged just 16, including the all-around title. She followed that with four Worlds golds in 2014 and another four in 2015.
By the time Rio 2016 – her first Olympics – rolled around, she was already a superstar and the hottest of hot favourites for the title. She didn’t disappoint: Biles won gold in the all-around, team, vault and floor, and bronze on the beam.
Tokyo 2020 will be the opportunity to cement her Olympic legacy. Gymnastic peak young, and it is unknown whether she will want to push herself physically and mentally into another Olympic cycle for Paris 2024. This summer is a key opportunity for Biles to make a remarkable statement. She has the ability to win golds across the board.
Her dominance is built on an utter mastery of gymnastic basics: with a tiny 4 foot 8 frame, incredible athletic ability and power, plus a low centre of gravity, she is built to be the ultimate gymnast. Add in supreme levels of hard work, a great imagination when it comes to her craft, and megawatt levels of personality, and she is almost unbeatable.
That imagination was on show last year at the World Championships in Stuttgart - at which she won five golds including the all-around title - when she came up with two different new skills which will be named after her in the women’s code of points. Biles wowed fans and judges with a triple twisting double tuck on the floor, and a double twisting double tuck dismount off the balance beam, which had previously only existed in gymnastics fans’ imaginations before Biles made them reality. Perhaps now the world’s most recognisable Olympian, all eyes will be on her to see what she can do in Tokyo.