Several athletes exceeded expectations during their sports’ Olympic trials.
The US Olympic Gymnastic Trials are just getting underway, but Simone Biles, despite a few uncharacteristic mistakes, is still successful. Biles scored the highest on the vault on the first night of the Trials, and she had the second best score on the beam for the night.[i] She won first place in the Trials by 2.100 points and has not lost a major competition since 2013.[ii]
So far, the Track and Field Trials have seen several successes from the athletes. Michelle Carter beat the meet record for her final throw in shot put by throwing 64’ 3.25”.[iii] She is the third athlete from the University of Texas to qualify for the Rio Olympics, and this will be her third Olympics.[iv]
Another success at the US Olympic Track and Field Trials is Brianna Rollins’s first place at the 100m hurdles. This is one of the hardest events to qualify for, especially since the competition is so great this year. Entering the trials, US runners ran 11 of the fastest times and 17 of the top 20 times for this event this year. Despite this, Rollins ran the 100m in 12.34 seconds, which is the second fastest time in the world this year.[v]
Josh Prenot nearly missed reaching the world record during the 200m breaststroke at the US Olympic Swimming Trials. He had the second best time in history at 2 minutes and 7.17 seconds. He also qualified for his first Olympics during this event.[vi]
Katie Ledecky was one of two American swimmers to reach a world-best time during the Trials.[vii] She had the world-best times in the 400m and 800m.[viii] She won by about 10 seconds in the 800m freestyle.[ix]
Michael Phelps made history during the Olympic Trials. The Rio Olympics will be his fifth Games, which is a record for men. He also won his fourth straight 200m butterfly, and he beat his world record time from 2009 by 54.84 seconds. No other man has won the same event at the Olympic Trials four times in a row.[x]
These athletes’ successes are a cause for optimism at the Rio Games.