MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Skye Blakely’s bid to make the U.S. women’s Olympic gymnastics team is over.

The 19-year-old will miss the U.S. Olympic trials after rupturing her right Achilles on Wednesday.

USA Gymnastics and Blakely confirmed the nature of the injury Thursday, just over 24 hours before the women’s trials begin.

“I’m devastated and heartbroken but I believe everything happens for a reason,” Blakely wrote in an Instagram post. “I was so close to reaching my dream but this injury was unavoidable.”

Blakely arrived at trials as a heavy favorite to make the five-woman team following a standout performance at the U.S. Championships, where she finished second to Simone Biles.

Blakely, who lives and trains in Frisco, Texas just outside of Dallas, was going through her floor exercise routine inside Target Center on Wednesday when her right leg gave way during a tumbling pass. She was in tears as she was helped off the podium and placed in a wheelchair to be evaluated.

The injury comes three years after Blakely tore a ligament in her elbow on the first day of the 2021 U.S. Olympic trials, forcing her out of the competition. Blakely said recently she went to a “dark place” mentally in the aftermath and credited a mental health professional for helping her move forward.

Blakely’s injury leaves just 15 athletes competing to be on the five-woman U.S. team that figures to be a heavy gold medal favorite in Paris.


AP Summer Olympics: https://apnews.com/hub/2024-paris-olympic-games