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11th Oct 2019

Simone Biles just broke a major record – and is achingly close to smashing an even bigger one

Anna O'Rourke

Simone Biles has made history once again by breaking her own record for the most all-around gymnastics titles ever won by a woman.

Representing the USA, Biles won her fifth all-around world gold medal at the World Gymnastics Championships in Stuttgart, Germany on Thursday.

Speaking to the press after she left her competitors for dust with the biggest margin of victory of her career, 2.1 points, even she seemed shocked at what she’d achieved.

“Sometimes I wonder how I do it,” she admitted.

“I feel like it’s just, like, not me. I wish I could have like an out-of-body experience to witness it, because sometimes I think I’m going crazy.”

It is the 22-year-old’s 22nd world medal – and she’s not done.

Biles has the chance to pick up four further medals in the tournament this weekend.

If she wins even one more medal win before the championships end, she will tie for the record for the most world-title medals won by any male or female gymnast. If she earns a medal in two or more events, she will beat the record of 23 held by Belarusian gymnast Vitaly Scherbo.

That Biles will pull this off seems almost like a foregone conclusion, but even if she doesn’t she’s already cemented her status as one of the best athletes on the planet.

“There is a point at which words fail,” wrote The Washington Post of her performance in Stuttgart yesterday. “Even the most comprehensive thesaurus runs out of adjectives for the sort of excellence that Simone Biles brings to gymnastics.”

She has, according to The New York Times, left “observers of the sport wondering how much higher she can go,” while Vox simply declared; “Simone Biles is the greatest female gymnast ever.”