Jordan Chiles, Jade Carey return, make history at U.S. Gymnastics Championships

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TAMPA — After Jordan Chiles finished her last routine of her first day of elite gymnastics competition since the Olympics, she started tearing up.

“Oh my gosh,” she said later, remembering what was spinning through her head. “I’m back.”

Chiles and fellow Tokyo medalist Jade Carey were pleased with their simultaneous returns to the sport’s highest level at the U.S. Gymnastics Championships on Friday night.

Chiles placed third in the all-around behind Shilese Jones and Konnor McClain. Carey is fifth going into Sunday’s final day of the meet. Both came off busy college seasons. They competed weekly from January into April, then shifted into full-time elite training.

“[Friday] honestly went really better than I thought it was going to go,” said UCLA’s Chiles, part of the Olympic silver medal team in Tokyo. “I just wanted to come into this competition hitting four for four [routines], honestly, and that’s what I did.”

GYMNASTICS NATIONALS: Results | Broadcast Schedule

They are in solid (and very early) position to make the five-woman team for this fall’s world championships, especially since fourth-place Kayla DiCello is not expected to vie for a roster spot as she matriculates at the University of Florida. A committee will finalize the world team following an October selection camp.

Just by stepping on the floor, Chiles and Carey made history. They became the first U.S. Olympic female gymnasts to return to elite competition following an NCAA season, showing that college gymnastics does not always signal retirement from Olympic-level gymnastics.

Chiles placed in the top five on all four events, competing with micro tears in a shoulder labrum and bicep, alleviated by pain-killing shots in the spring. Carey had the highest score on vault and second-highest on floor.

“This was a very good first step back here on the elite stage,” said Oregon State’s Carey, the Olympic floor exercise champion. “Wasn’t a perfect day, but I’m proud of the routines that I put together.”

Carey and Chiles both have 2024 Olympic ambitions. Only one U.S. female gymnast has gone from the Olympics to college gymnastics and back to the Olympics, and that was before the NCAA era began 40 years ago.

They are faces of a changing landscape in the sport. In Tokyo, there were more non-teens than teens competing in Olympic women’s gymnastics for the first time in more than 50 years. Also in the last 50 years, Simone Biles is the only woman in her 20s to win a U.S. all-around title. Jones is 20. Chiles is 21. Carey is 22.

Chiles and Carey ascended into leadership roles in the absences of Biles, who texted Chiles that she would watch the competition from her cruise, and Tokyo all-around gold medalist Suni Lee, who was in the arena as a spectator. Biles and Lee have not ruled out returns to elite gymnastics for a 2024 Olympic run.

Before Friday’s competition, Chiles said she and Carey told the other gymnasts that they would bring a hyped-up, loud-cheering NCAA atmosphere to the event.

Chiles took notice of her younger competitors. Notably Jones, whose leading 14.85 on uneven bars motivated Chiles to “step it up.”

“I’m happy that they’re looking up to us in a way, but then also I can look up to them knowing that they are younger, and they are experiencing something different,” Chiles said. “I’m coming into this as Jordan Chiles, the Olympian, but they’re still being able to fulfill their journey.”

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Paris 2024 Olympic marathon route unveiled

Paris 2024 Olympic Marathon
Paris 2024
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The 2024 Olympic marathon route will take runners from Paris to Versailles and back.

The route announcement was made on the 233rd anniversary of one of the early, significant events of the French Revolution: the Women’s March on Versailles — “to pay tribute to the thousands of women who started their march at city hall to Versailles to take up their grievances to the king and ask for bread,” Paris 2024 President Tony Estanguet said.

Last December, organizers announced the marathons will start at Hôtel de Ville (city hall, opposite Notre-Dame off the Seine River) and end at Les Invalides, a complex of museums and monuments one mile southeast of the Eiffel Tower.

On Wednesday, the rest of the route was unveiled — traversing the banks of the Seine west to the Palace of Versailles and then back east, passing the Eiffel Tower before the finish.

The men’s and women’s marathons will be on the last two days of the Games at 8 a.m. local time (2 a.m. ET). It will be the first time that the women’s marathon is held on the last day of the Games after the men’s marathon traditionally occupied that slot.

A mass public marathon will also be held on the Olympic marathon route. The date has not been announced.

The full list of highlights among the marathon course:

• Hôtel de ville de Paris (start)
• Bourse de commerce
• Palais Brongniart
• Opéra Garnier
• Place Vendôme
• Jardin des Tuileries
• The Louvre
• Place de la Concorde
• The bridges of Paris
(Pont de l’Alma; Alexandre III;
Iéna; and more)
• Grand Palais
• Palais de Tokyo
• Jardins du Trocadéro
• Maison de la Radio
• Manufacture et Musées
nationaux de Sèvres
• Forêt domaniale
des Fausses-Reposes
• Monuments Pershing –
Lafayette
• Château de Versailles
• Forêt domaniale de Meudon
• Parc André Citroën
• Eiffel Tower
• Musée Rodin
• Esplanade des Invalides (finish)

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International Boxing Association lifts ban on Russia, Belarus

Boxing gloves
Getty
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The International Boxing Association (IBA) lifted its ban on amateur boxers from Russia and Belarus over the war in Ukraine that had been in place since early March.

“The IBA strongly believes that politics shouldn’t have any influence on sports,” the federation said in a press release. “Hence, all athletes should be given equal conditions.”

Most international sports federations banned athletes from Russia and Belarus indefinitely seven months ago, acting after an IOC recommendation. It is believed that the IBA is the first international federation in an Olympic sport to lift its ban.

The IOC has not officially changed its recommendation from last winter to exclude Russia and Belarus athletes “to protect the integrity of the events and the safety of the other participants.”

Last week, IOC President Thomas Bach said in an interview with an Italian newspaper that Russian athletes who do not endorse their country’s war in Ukraine could at some point be accepted back into international sports, competing under a neutral flag.

IBA, in lifting its ban, will also allow Russia and Belarus flags and national anthems.

“The time has now come to allow all the rest of the athletes of Russia and Belarus to participate in all the official competitions of their sports representing their countries,” IBA President Umar Kremlev, a Russian, said in a press release last week. “Both the IOC and the International Federations must protect all athletes, and there should be no discrimination based on nationality. It is the duty of all of us to keep sports and athletes away from politics.”

In 2019, the IOC stripped the IBA — then known as AIBA — of its Olympic recognition following an inquiry committee report into finance, governance, refereeing and judging. The IOC ran the Tokyo Olympic boxing competition.

The IBA will not run qualifying events for the 2024 Paris Games, but it does still hold world championships, the next being a men’s event in Uzbekistan next year.

Boxing, introduced on the Olympic program in 1904, was not included on the initial program for the 2028 Los Angeles Games but can still be added. The IBA must address concerns “around its governance, its financial transparency and sustainability and the integrity of its refereeing and judging processes,” Bach said last December.

On Sept. 23, the IBA suspended Ukraine’s boxing federation, citing “government interference.” Ukraine boxers are still allowed to compete with their flag and anthem.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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