Dear USA Gymnastics Family:
Well, Big Ben has sounded and it is officially less than 100 days to the London Olympic Games. Many in the sports world and the media have shifted their focus to the upcoming summer where the Olympic movement steps to the forefront of the public eye.
For USA Gymnastics, and our entire extended family, it is time to shine. Team USA has been training and the final run to qualifying for the U.S. Olympic Team is rapidly approaching. Because of the incredible depth of our men's and women's national teams, the competition has risen to a new level, and now only five men and five women in artistic gymnastics, along with one rhythmic athlete, and one man and woman from trampoline will compete in London for the red, white and blue.
The past two Olympic Games have yielded bright moments for USA Gymnastics. In Athens (2004), Carly Patterson and Paul Hamm led the women and men to a total of nine medals, including both all-around gold and two team silver medals. In Beijing (2008), Nastia Liukin and Shawn Johnson anchored the women's silver medal team, winning five and four medals, respectively; and Jonathan Horton steered the men to a team bronze and captured an individual silver on high bar - a total of 10 medals for Team USA. Heading into London this summer, the U.S. is the only country to win back-to-back men's and women's team medals in Athens and Beijing.
This summer will be a great showcase of our sport. In May, the men and women both begin their quest with the Men's Qualifier in Colorado Springs, and the Secret U.S. Classic for the women in Chicago. Trampoline has its second of three qualification events in Cleveland, Ohio. June follows with the Visa Championships and the final Olympic selection events for artistic gymnastics and trampoline in San Jose. The Olympic Games officially begin with the Opening Ceremonies on July 27.
This period also provides unprecedented exposure for gymnastics. NBC, the NBC Sports Network and Universal Sports will provide front-row coverage throughout the summer. Our athletes are appearing in magazines, news articles and corporate advertisements. And, USA Gymnastics will celebrate this journey with the post-Olympic Kellogg's Tour of Gymnastics Champions, scheduled for 40 U.S. cities this Fall.
Clubs should be contacting the group sales department in your local venue for ticket information. Visit www.kelloggstour.com to get more information about the show and how to buy tickets.
We invite everyone to join this journey - these athletes represent the collective effort of everyone involved in the sport of gymnastics. I look forward to sharing thoughts and perspectives with you as the journey unfolds, and suggest you visit www.usagym.org, follow us through Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, or whatever means you prefer. We will also be launching a new website, www.usagymnast.com, to help you keep up with Team USA and your favorite athletes.
This is going to be an incredible summer for gymnastics and the United States. Stay tuned!
See you in the gym,
President/CEO, USA Gymnastics