BEIJING, Aug. 18, 2008 – 2008 Olympic all-around champion Nastia Liukin of Parker, Texas, is looking for her fourth Olympic medal when she competes today in the uneven bars finals at the 2008 Olympic Games, held at the National Indoor Stadium in Beijing, China. Liukin, who has nine world medals to her credit, already has three Olympic medals thus far: all-around gold medal, team silver medal and floor exercise bronze medal. 2008 Olympic team bronze-medalist Kevin Tan of Fremont, Calif., is the first reserve athlete in tonight’s still rings competition.
Liukin is known for her expertise and intricate routine on the uneven bars. She is the only U.S. gymnast to earn a score of more than a 17, which was for her uneven bars routine. Liukin was the 2005 world uneven bars champion and earned the silver medal in 2006-07. Liukin is on track to tie Shannon Miller’s U.S. gymnastics record of five Olympic medals in one Olympic Games; Miller earned five (two silver and three bronze) in Barcelona.
In 2008, Liukin won the all-around titles at both the Tyson American Cup and the Pacific Rim Championships presented by Gillette Venus. She is the 2005 all-around world-silver medalist and won four straight U.S. all-around titles (junior in 2003-04 and senior in 2005-06). She finished fifth in the all-around at the 2007 World Championships. Liukin is coached by her father Valeri, who has two gold and two silver medals from the 1988 Olympic Games.
Liukin, along with three-time Olympic silver-medalist Shawn Johnson of West Des Moines, Iowa, and 2008 Olympic team bronze-medalist Jonathan Horton of Houston, also will compete tomorrow on the final day of individual event finals. Liukin and Johnson will compete in the balance beam finals, and Horton will compete in the horizontal bar finals. The Aug. 19 session begins at 6 p.m. local Beijing time.