Carey came back to score gold in the floor final.
Jade Carey took home gold in the individual floor final for Team USA at the Tokyo Olympics on Monday, Aug. 2 after a tough vault performance just the day before. Carey shared that she was able to pick herself up after struggling on Sunday thanks to advice from her Team USA teammates, especially shouting out the words of wisdom from the GOAT. Simone Biles’ advice to Jade Carey before floor came from her own experience competing in the Olympics.
In case you missed it, Carey struggled in her vault performance on Sunday, Aug. 1, placing eighth in the finals. Though there were predictions that Carey would win a medal, the athlete took a misstep in the run up to her first vault, causing her to fail to complete her expected two-and-a-half twists in the air, per The New York Times.
The 2021 Summer Games marked Carey’s Olympic debut, and the 21-year-old athlete left the competition in tears Sunday after she failed to make the podium. Thankfully, her teammates were quick to give her a much-needed pep talk when she got back to the team’s hotel. Simone Biles — who Carey had replaced in the vault final when Biles pulled out of the competition on Aug. 1 — gave Carey some practical words of encouragement, per NYT. According to Carey, Biles said, “Let it go and move on. It happened and you can’t do anything about it.” Carey also told People that Biles gave her some extra motivation: “[Biles was] just like, 'Let's go out and kill floor.' So that's what I did."
Of course, 24-year-old Biles spoke from her personal experience as a seasoned Olympic athlete, having won medals in Rio in 2016 and having scored the silver at the Team USA Tokyo 2020 event final on July 27.
More than that, Biles was also speaking from her most recent experience with Olympic disappointment, after pulling out of the team final and all-around events in vault and floor to prioritize her mental health. “I didn’t want to go out there and do something dumb and get hurt and be negligent,” Biles said, per video of the post-final press conference on July 27. “So, I knew for myself that I had to take a step back.”
Carey opted to follow Biles’ advice and take her mind off of the disappointing performance — instead, she focused her energies on the floor competition. “For tonight, I just had to let that go,” Carey said, per NYT.
The advice to “let it go” certainly paid off, with Carey beaming as she took home gold on Monday. Though Biles pulled out of the floor competition, she announced on Monday that she will still be competing in the balance beam final on Tuesday — her last opportunity to compete in the Tokyo Olympics.