If Jordan Chiles’ emotional exit from the floor on Sunday night didn’t say it all, her U.S. Gymnastic teammates’ embrace of the soon-to-be Olympian sure did.
Chiles qualified for the 2021 Tokyo Olympics after finishing third at the U.S. Olympic Gymnastics Trials in St. Louis behind Suni Lee and Simone Biles, Chiles’ training partner and the world’s top gymnast.
“It was honestly the most amazing feeling of my life,” Chiles told the Today Show, “having (Biles) by my side 24/7, giving me encouraging words every day definitely helped. It was very motivational.”
Her 14.233 mark on her floor routine solidified her placing as one of six women (and four alternates) to make the team. She finished with a 114.45 all-around score.
The 20-year-old grew up in Vancouver, Wash. and graduate of Prairie High School in 2018, though she spent much of her youth competing outside of the high school gymnastics ranks. In 2017, when she was 17, she placed second in the all-around at the U.S. National Gymnastics Championships. Results in senior international competition soon followed, as did a journey that led to her recapturing her love for the sport.
Chiles, who signed with UCLA out of high school, now trains at the World Champions Centre in Spring, Texas., which is owned by Biles’ family. This is her first Olympic appearance.
The Summer Olympics begin on July 23.
Watch Chiles’ Sunday night floor routine that sealed her spot here: