Washington gymnast aims for 2020 Olympics

The Prairie High School freshman won 3 gold medals in Italy

KOIN Athlete of the Week Jordan Chiles (COURTESY JENNIFER LEA)

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Prairie High School freshman Jordan Chiles represented Team USA at the City of Jesolo Trophy meet in Italy last weekend.

On Monday, March 21, family and friends were on hand at the Portland International Airport to welcome her back home.

Chiles competed in the vault, where she earned the first of three gold medals.

“I’ve been working on this vault for a while so seeing that how much progress I have made on this vault, I’m very happy for myself,” said Chiles.

“She’s one of the best vaulters in the world right now,” Erika Bakacs, who trains Chiles at Naydenov Gymnastics in Vancouver, Wash., said. “She’s the only one performing actually [in] the vault from all of the athletes [including] the seniors and juniors so that made her standout a lot.”

Chiles took silver on the bars in the junior competition, and won gold in the junior all-around competition. Chiles and the rest of the USA junior team also won gold.

“At first when I started gymnastics I thought it was going to be very easy for me, but that is when I was like 6,” said Chiles. “And once I got into high school, it started getting a little difficult.”

Chiles has a very difficult schedule. She practices gymnastics several hours each day and still gets the job done in the classroom.

“The academics are very important,” said Chiles. “I just verbally committed to UCLA.”

“It’s insane. I know. My 14-year-old little sister is already committed to a four-year university,” Jazmin Chiles, Jordan’s older sister, said. “That’s awesome. But it also makes me proud because I went to a four-year university.”

Jordan Chiles said her goal is to represent the United States at the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.

“I still have another four years [to train hard]. It would be really cool representing the U.S. in Tokyo.”

That would be a dream come true.

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