Sasha Farber is standing by his Dancing With the Stars partner Simone Biles after a comment she made to host Tom Bergeron and the show’s judges went viral. Sasha and Simone were waiting for their scores after a trio dance with troupe member Brittany Cherry when the Olympic champ clapped back at host Tom Bergeron’s seemingly innocent question as to why she wasn’t smiling after being complimented by the judges.
“Smiling doesn’t win you gold medals,” Biles said.
Sasha Farber’s face was priceless after his popular partner’s off-the-cuff comment.
Farber took to Instagram to explain why Simone’s now-viral comment was the perfect comeback after a night when the judges, most notably Carrie Ann Inaba, called out the Olympian for being too “perfect” and not showing enough emotion and hiding behind a “signature smile.” Julianne Hough also told the gymnast that she didn’t know if “the smile is authentic.”
Sasha Farber was quick to defend Simone’s comment, which some viewers thought was sassy. Farber called Simone’s repsonse “wise words” and he reiterated that “sacrifice, determination, perseverance, and continuous hard work” are the ingredients for achieving goals.
“Don’t think a smile is all it takes!” Sasha wrote. “That was Simone’s strong message. Don’t be afraid to dream and be prepared to work hard for it. There will be heartache, pain, and lots of tears – just pick yourself up and continue. That is what my dance partner represents.”
Farber reminded fans that his partner is a gymnast, not a dancer, and that she spent countless hours in the gym to represent the U.S. in the Olympics to bring home the gold.
“Some say she makes every dance look effortless only because she gives it her all countless hours of practice and more practice,” Sasha wrote. “She works hard and doesn’t give up. I am even more proud of you partner! Thank you for practicing what you preach.”
Sasha Farber isn’t the only Dancing With the Stars celeb who’s talking after the clap-back heard around the world. DWTS host Tom Bergeron took to Twitter to write that he “loved” the gold medalist’s “crisp” response to his “clumsy” question. Bergeron noted that he “unwittingly contributed to the smile pile” when he said to Biles, “I was waiting for you to smile at some of the compliments but you didn’t.” The longtime DWTS host revealed that he really should have asked the star, “What’s your reaction to the judges’ comments?”
In addition to Sasha Farber and Tom Bergeron, Dancing With the Stars frontrunner Normani Kordei spoke out in Biles’ defense. In an interview with reporters after the live show, Kordei said her rival dancer has “spent fifteen years in the gym busting her as**, it is not all about smiles, it’s not all about fun.”
“I know it sounds good on TV, especially a television show like this, to just have fun,” Kordei said, according to Hollywood Life. “But no, it is not always like that… You know I like that she kept it real, kept it… You know, they wanted her to be herself, and that is the hard truth and the hard truth is that smiles don’t get you gold medals, and this whole entire country was celebrating because of that hard work put in.”
Sasha Farber told reporters that although he knows that it’s the judges’ job to critique the contestants, Simone is only 20 years old and he felt “kind of sad she had to go through that” with the judges this week.
Take a look at the video below to see Sasha Farber and his partner explaining her viral Dancing With the Stars moment.
[Featured Image by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images]