Road to Rio: US women’s Olympic gymnastics team has been announced.
It has been announced that Simone Biles, Gabby Douglas, Aly Raisman, Madison Kocian, and Laurie Hernandez will represent the United States in gymnastics in Rio De Janeiro this summer.
Douglas and Raisman are both returning for their second Olympic Games.
The selection process for this year’s team was no easy process, with a large number of elite gymnasts to choose from. The final decision was made on Sunday evening by the national team coordinator, Marta Karoyli.
Athletes competed for a chance to make the team this weekend at the Olympic Trials in San Jose, California.
Three replacement athletes will also travel to Rio to step in if needed. These are: MyKayla Skinner, (who placed 5th in the All Around competition at trials), Ragan Smith (who placed 4th) and Ashton Locklear (who only competed in two events).
Although Douglas and Kocian both placed lower in the all around competition than the selected alternates Skinner and Smith, the team was chosen based on how the gymnasts have performed throughout the season.
Karolyi said that choosing this team was "the hardest decision" she has had to make in her entire career.
In response to Douglas' shaky performance at trials, she said she has confidence that Gabby will be able to hold it together in Rio.
"She always peaks a little bit late,” Karolyi said. “Sometimes it makes me nervous. But then she is able to perform at the most important moment.”
This is the final year Karolyi will oversee the US women's team. Under her watchful eye they have won the last three Olympic all-around golds.
This year they will be led by three-time all around champion, Simone Biles, who is being hailed as one of the greatest athletes of all time.