3 black teenagers made history as they swept the podium at the U.S. Gymnastics Championship

Ben Ebuka April 06, 2023
Photo credit: Konnor McClain, Instagram

Following the footsteps of black trailblazers like Diane Durham in the sport, Konnor McClain, Shilese Jones, and Jordan Chiles made history by winning the top three spots in the Senior all-around competition at the 2022 U.S. Gymnastics Championship in Florida, displaying an overwhelming wave of girl power with great finesse.

The three gymnasts made history as the first three Black female gymnasts to sweep the podium. According to USA Gymnastics, “Konnor McClain captured the senior women’s all-around title at the Amalie Arena in a combined eight-rotation 112.750 to beat out all competition for the night’s grand prize, and she added balance beam gold (28.900) along the way. Shiles Jones finished a close second with 112.000, while Olympian Jordan Chiles finished third (111.900).

McClain returned from a stress fracture in each shin, a concussion and flu, and the loss of her father to compete in the event.

“It’s so unreal. I’m still in shock a little bit,” McClain said in an interview with NBC Sports. “I wish I could talk to my dad right now,” she added.

As expected, many fans on Twitter and other social media platforms reacted elatedly to the history-making moments that re-energized the enduring ‘Black Spirit.’

According to NBC Connecticut, “Gabby Douglas, was the first African American to become the Olympic individual all-around Champion and the first U.S. gymnast to win gold in both the individual all-around and team competitions at the 2012 Olympics. Simon Biles, with 25 World Championship titles, won a record of seven all-around Championships and tied with Shannon Miller for the most Olympic medals won by an American gymnast.”

“McClain is now one of the leading contenders to represent the United States at the 2024 Paris Olympics,” said Kristen Conti of NBC Connecticut.

Last Edited by:Annie-Flora Mills Updated: April 6, 2023


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