“I’m a little more determined this year”

Four years ago, the American gymnast Skye Blakely was thrust into the spotlight when the postponement of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games to 2021 suddenly made her age eligible.

“It was kind of interesting to know that 2020 was like the big year, but it got moved,” Blakely told Olympics.com in June 2020. “Then I heard a little bit about how the girls born in 2005 were going to be able to go, and that made me really happy because knowing my chance to go made me really excited because my eyes were set on 2024.”

But her journey to Tokyo did not go as she hoped.

A talented junior – she was a member of Team USA for her first-ever World Junior Championships in 2019 – Blakely impressed early in the 2021 season, winning the balance beam at the Winter Cup.

She finished seventh at the U.S. Championships later that year, easily qualifying for the U.S. Olympic Trials, but a vault injury derailed her.

One thing it didn’t do: deter her.

A year later, Blakely was an integral part of the U.S. team that won gold at the 2022 World Championships. Individually, she advanced to the balance beam final.

In 2023, Blakely was once again a member of Team USA’s dominant golden team.

“I think I have a lot more experience and I know what to expect, a lot more and overall more confident going into this year,” Blakely told a small group of reporters, including Olympics.com, earlier this year during a USA Gymnastics press briefing. .

“I would say in 2021 it was kind of a surprise, but I’m not sure, I’ll just go with the flow. But now I feel like I’m a little more determined this year.

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