Current Oregon State Beaver student-athlete Jade Carey is one of the best gymnasts in the United States, despite not being a part of Team USA.
The 21-year-old qualified for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics a year ago due to multiple performances at the Individual Apparatus World Cup Series.
She’s representing her country individually in a new format that’s been experimented to make the playing ground equally fair.
“The FIG, which governs international gymnastics, decided to alter the team structure for the Tokyo Olympics,” wrote USA Today’s Emily Adams. “Rather than five team members as it has been since 2012, the FIG reduced the team roster to four spots and add up to two individual competitors per team. The goal of this change was to create more room at the Games for event specialists and smaller countries. Carey earned one of those individual spots and will compete for the United States, but not in the team competition.”
Sunday, Carey posted the second-highest vault score, 15.166, and the third-highest score in floor exercise, at 14.100, to qualify for the finals in both events.
“The people that made floor finals are the best athletes on floor, same on vault. It is what it is,” said Tom Forster, USA Gymnastics women’s high-performance coordinator, after two of his players were beat out by Carey.
Additionally, she narrowly missed out on the all-around finals, posting the ninth-best score, 56.265, good for the third-best U.S. score. Only two participating from each nation are allowed in the finals.
Carey entered the Olympics with great experience at the high-level competition. She has four world championship medals: one gold and three silvers. One of her silver medals is from the 2017 World Championships.
The Olympics can be a lifelong goal for some athletes. For Carey, she deferred her 2017 enrollment at Oregon State to continue training for an opportunity to win gold.
Once she returns home, she’ll join the No. 21 ranked gymnastics team in the country.
Also, check out the video above where she used Legos to explain the sport of gymnastics, vaulting, and her latest trick.