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Tuesday 18 August 2015
18 Aug '15

Seeing the Future in Indianapolis: The Likely 2016 Olympic Team in Rio, and a Glimpse of Tokyo 2020

I have seen the future of USA women's gymnastics in Indianapolis, and it look bright.

Photo of Olivia Dunne competing at the 2015 Parkettes Invitational in Allentown, PA So, to recap, a few days ago in Indianapolis, I saw the future. I have seen 2016, and I have seen 2020. A year from now, while you are watching the Rio Olympics, & TV is making household-name celebrities out of ordinary people who happen to be extraordinarily hard-working & talented athletes, you will almost certainly be hearing these names in gymnastics (write this down, you will be amazed, or you will have the opportunity to point & laugh): Simone Biles, Gabby Douglas, Aly Reisman (those names are already known & will be back), along with Maggie Nichols, Bailie Key & maybe Kyla Ross or Madison Kocian (& if Kocian isn't on the team, there's a chance Ashton Locklear or, more likely, Brenna Dowell will make it as a bars specialist; this team needs help on bars). Outside chance for Christina Desiderio, if she doesn't crash & burn like most Parkettes. Foreseeing 2016 isn't so hard. Let's go way out there, to Tokyo, 2020: look for (you're writing this down, right?) Jazzy Foberg, Laurie Hernandez, Ragan Smith, Jordan Chiles, Morgan Hurd and Olivia Dunne. Bailie Key might well be back. Maybe Sydney Johnson-Scharpf (Brandy Johnson's daughter) or Desiderio, or Gabby Perea.

I have seen the future, & American exceptionalism lives. I think perhaps the thing I like most is half these girls come from smaller gyms that have never put an athlete on the Olympic team before. (That, an Martha Karolyi is retiring. O, frabjous day! Callou! Callay! 30 years of two twisted Romanians running the U.S. team is finally at an end...)
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