Simone Biles wore a medal in a color she wasn’t used to after the individual balance beam event on Monday. Biles won bronze at the event which is known for its incredible difficulty, The Guardian reports. The Netherlands’ Sanne Wevers won gold and Laurie Hernandez, Simone’s U.S. gymnastics teammate won silver.
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According to The Guardian, Biles qualified for the event with the highest score and her routine started off well. But the current world gymnastics champion slipped after a somersault when her foot landed on the edge of the beam. She ended up having to hold on to the apparatus in order to stay on.
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“I’m not disappointed in the medal that I received because anyone would love to have a bronze at an Olympic Games,” Biles said. “I’m disappointed in the routine that I did. Not so much the entire routine just the front tuck, I guess, because the rest of the routine was pretty good.”
Biles scored a 14.73 in the event which is the first time that she’s scored under 15.3 at the Rio Olympics. Simone seemed to be so certain that her score had not earned her a medal that she didn’t change into her medal ceremony uniform until the final competitor’s score had been revealed, The Guardian reports.
“She is human,” her coach, Aimee Boorman, said. “She made that save, because both of her feet were coming off the beam. I was pretty impressed with that. I see it as a triumph. She won a bronze medal on beam at the Olympics. That’s huge. She should be proud of that. Besides that error the rest of the routine was excellent. Sometimes your feet slip.”
Wevers performed next and did a difficult routine which earned her 15.466. Hernandez scored a 15.333 in her beam routine to secure the silver medal.
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“This beam final going in, we’re in the back room in the warm-up gym watching everybody and everyone was amazing, just hitting and hitting and hitting and looking beautiful doing it. It was really anybody’s race,” Simone’s coach added. ” She unfortunately had a significant error but the rest of her routine was good enough to get her a bronze.”
The Wall Street Journal reports that Vincent Wevers, father and coach of gold medalist Sanne Wevers, said that he didn’t think they would have gotten the winning score if Simone Biles hadn’t made that error. But they did a lot to increase her chances of winning by adding more difficulty to her balance beam routine.
“I did a lot of numbers in training,” said Wevers, when she was asked if it was difficult to perform the routine with all of its added complexity.
Biles has so far won gold in the individual all-around, individual vault, and team competitions at the Rio Olympics. But the bronze on the balance beam ends her quest for a record-breaking five gold medals in gymnastics at a single Olympic Games. Biles insisted that the pressure to break the record hadn’t really affected her.
“It’s something you guys shove into my head and I’m 19,” Biles said to The Guardian. “I can’t put that much stress on myself because I am only 19. I think you guys want it more than I do because I just want to perform the routines that I’ve practiced.”
The Rio Olympics aren’t over for Simone Biles. On Tuesday, Simone and her teammate Aly Raisman move on to a whole new event, the floor routine, giving them both another chance to win gold.
[Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images]