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Simone Biles breaks another record, becomes first woman to land Yurchenko double pike

Simone Biles executed an almost-perfect Yurchenko double pike, a vault move historically only carried out by men, at the GK United States Classic.

Simone Biles breaks another record, becomes first woman to land Yurchenko double pike
Image Source: Getty Images/ 2021 GK U.S. Classic. (Photo by Emilee Chinn)

Simone Biles has broken yet another record. At the GK United States Classic in Indianapolis on Saturday, the defending world champion gymnast became the first woman to land the Yurchenko double pike vault move in competition. This is a high-difficulty skill that has been historically only carried out by men. Therefore, her ability to fulfill the move has been highly praised. Although she added two extra hops for what some have called a "slightly imperfect" landing, the accomplishment is still rather meaningful. In an interview following the competition, Biles noted that she was proud of her performance at the vault, CNN reports.




"I was just thinking, 'Do it like training. Don't try to like overdo anything,' because I have a tendency as soon as I raise my hand to kind of overpower things," the gymnast stated during the interview. "And I did a little bit, but at least I was on my feet. It's a new vault and I'm proud of how today went." The Yurchenko double pike vault move is a roundoff onto the springboard, followed by a back handspring onto the vaulting table, and ending with a piked double backflip into the air to landing. Overall, Biles was able to defend her GK US Classic all-around title with a total score of 58.400 points. This was a particularly remarkable feat as the competition was her first in more than a year and a half. She wore a white leotard decorated with a rhinestone goat while competing. The goat, many have come to believe, is supposed to allude to her claim as the GOAT, also known as the "greatest of all time."




Biles, a four-time Olympic gold medalist, achieved the top score on both the balance beam as well as the floor exercise. She was followed closely by Jordan Chiles, aged 20. Chiles is from Spring, Texas, and finished in second place in the all-around with a total of 57.100 points. Meanwhile, Kayla DiCello, aged 17, took third place in the all-around with a total score of 56.100 points. There is no doubt that the three fiercely competitive gymnasts will be part of the United States Olympic team trials, scheduled to take place from June 24 to June 27 in St. Louis, Missouri, later this year. The trials will be held in The Dome at America's Center.




Those who succeed will go on to compete at the Tokyo Olympics, set to begin in late July, barring further postponement or cancellation. The Olympics were postponed owing to the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic. Experts claim that carrying on with plans to hold the sporting event could prove dangerous to the citizens of Tokyo, Japan, who are still battling a furious second wave as their country enforces a strict state of emergency. Already, the Tokyo Olympics organizing committee hinted at a "fan-free" event, that is, an event with empty stadiums. While international spectators were previously barred from entering the South East Asian country to attend the games, now, local fans may also be banned. Organizing committee president Seiko Hashimoto said at her weekly briefing, "We would like to make a decision as soon as possible [on fans], but after the state of emergency is lifted we will assess."



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