Simone Biles returns to competition with a victory after two years | Sports

Simone Biles, the most decorated gymnast of all time, has returned to competition two years after retiring at the Tokyo Olympics to protect her mental health. The American has taken the victory in the Core Classic this Saturday, the last qualifying test for the United States National Championships that are held at the end of the month in San José (California).

Biles, 26, easily prevailed in the test with a total of 59,100 points, which put her five points ahead of the second classified, Leanne Wong. In this way, the possibility opens for Biles to be part of the US national team for the Paris 2024 Games, where she could add another Olympic medal to the seven achieved between Rio 2016 and Tokyo 2020 -four of them gold-.

Fans at the NOW Arena in Illinois cheered for Biles after she completed a powerful somersault in her floor exercise routine, and the crowd recognized her when she nailed a difficult Yurchenko double jump. Biles started her first meet in two years on the uneven bars, where she placed third best of the day. The gymnast was confident on the balance beam, the only individual test in which she was able to compete in Tokyo due to the mental block that forced her to resign. On that occasion, she got a bronze which marked her seventh Olympic medal.

Biles’ score in the Core Classic was 14.800, the highest of the two women’s sessions combined. Sunisa Lee, a gold medalist in the all-around in Tokyo, wobbled a bit on the balance beam, but she still scored 14,500. Lee didn’t compete in all of Saturday’s events as she only needed a good result on two apparatus to qualify for the National Championships, something she achieved with her excellent routine on the balance beam and a 13.500 on the vault. Biles’ floor routine scored 14,900, the best of the two sessions combined, and she finished with the vault, where she scored 15,400 on a routine in which she went slightly to the side upon landing.

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