The 2018 World Gymnastics Championships are just around the corner, and after becoming so familiar with last Olympics’ Final Five, people can’t wait to get acquainted with a new group of US gymnasts- many of whom will likely go on to compete in the Olympics.
As expected, there’s one familiar face on the team, and that’s Simone Biles, who has been dubbed by many the best gymnast in the history of the sport.
Here’s what you need to know about the five women, and one alternate gymnast, competing on the US Women’s Team at the World Gymnastics Championsihps.
Hometown: Houston, Texas
Simone Biles is a three-time world champion and all-around Olympic gold medalist. She is one of three women on the US team who will be competing on all four events at the qualifying competition in Doha on Saturday.
Simone’s list of accomplishments is impressive. Not only is she the three-time all-around champion, but she’s the three-time world floor champion, two-time world balance beam champion, five-time US national all-around champion, and a member of the gold-medal-winning American teams at the 2014 and 2015 World Artistic Gymnastics Championships.
Her long list of wins makes her the most decorated American gymnast in history, taking over from Shannon Miller in 2016. With her four Olympic golds, Biles set a US record for most gold medals in women’s gymnastics at a single Olympics games.
Hometown: Middletown, Delaware
Fans are going to get better acquainted with Morgan Hurd over the next few years. The 17-year-old is the 2017 World all-around champion and balance beam silver medalist, as well as a three-time member of the US women’s national gymnastics team.
Morgan was adopted from Wuzhou, China, when she was just 11. She began gymnastics at the ripe age of 3. In 2014, she placed 14th as a level 10 in the Nastia Liukin CUp.
One year later, Hurd finished 9th All-Around and 2nd on Uneven Bars. Last year, in 2017, she became eligible for senior status. She debuted at the 2017 Stuttgart World Cup, where she finished 3rd in the all-around. She helped the US finish first at the City of Jesolo Trophy.
This October, Hurd participated in the WOrlds Team Selection Camp. In competition, she placed fourth on bars, behind Biles, McCusker, and McCallum; fifth on vault, sixth on beam, and seventh on floor. She was subsequently chosen to the World’s Team.
Hometown: New Milford, Connecticut
Riley is a three-time member of the US women’s national gymnastics team. She won the AA gold medal at the 2017 City of Jesolo Trophy, as well as the AA bronze at the 2017 and 2018 National Gymnastics Championships.
The 17-year-old is currently homeschooled; she moved to level 10 at age 14. At the time, she was draining at Dynamic Gymnastics in Mohegan Lake, New York.
In February 2017, she started her senior career and represented the US at the 2017 AT&T American Cup in New Jersey. This was her senior international debut, and she placed fifth overall with a 52.966.
At her next competition, the City of Jesolo Trophy in July, she won the all-around gold medal and helped the US team win their gold medal. In October, she was a part of the Worlds Team Selection Camp. In competition, she placed first on the uneven bars, second in the AA behind Biles, and on Balance Beam behind Eaker. She placed third on floor behind Biles and Grace McCallum. She was 7th on vault.
Hometown: Middletown, Delaware
Grace will be competing on three events this weekend: floor, vault, and bars.
Grace has certainly made a name for herself as the 2018 Pan American and 2018 Pacific Rim senior women’s individual all-around champion. Last year, the 2017 US Classic, she placed third in AA and first on Vault. She was officially added to the senior team this year. She was chosen to compete in the 2018 City of Jesolo Trophy, where she placed fifth all-around, fifth on vault, and third on floor exercise.
In October, McCallum participated in the World’s Training Selection. In competition, she placed second on floor beind Biles, third in the all-around, fifth on and vault, and seventh on bars.
Hometown: Grain Valley, MO China
Kara will be competing on the beam at World’s. Kara is a two-time member of the National Gymnastics Team, and the 2018 Pan American balance beam competition
She competed at the 2017 US Classic where she took home the bronze in the all-around. She also placed fifth in the all-around.
Eaker turned senior earlier this year. She competed at the American Classic where she took home the gold on beam, second on floor, and fourth in the all-around. At the Worlds Training Selection Camp, she placed first on the beam in competition, sixth in the all-around, eighth on vault, ninth on uneven bars, and fifth on floor. She next day, she was named to the 2018 WOrld Championships team.
Hometown: Snellville, Georgia
Ragain Smith, the 2017 US all-around champion, has been plagued by injuries over the past year. She will be the alternate athlete.
The 18-year-old is a five-time member of the US National Team (since 2014) and is the 2017 National All-Around champion. She as an alternate for the 2016 Olympic Team.
Raganhails om Snellville, Georgia. She began gymnastics at the ripe age of four.