2020 Tokyo Olympics: US Gymnasts Grace McCallum and Jordan Chiles Speak Out About Teammate Simone Biles’ Unexpected Withdrawal

by Keeli Parkey

United States gymnastics legend Simone Biles withdrawing from events has been one of the most surprising storylines of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. As has been widely reported, she did so in order to focus on her mental health.

Two of the 24-year-old’s American teammates recently spoke with Hoda Kotb on TODAY about Biles and what her Olympics future might hold for her. Those Olympians are Jordan Chiles and Grace McCallum. They were key parts of the team that won silver in the women’s team competition at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. The Russian Olympic Committee took the gold. The British team won bronze.

Speaking with Kotb from inside the arena during the gymnastics competition, Chiles and McCallum voiced their support for Simone Biles. Chiles said her famous teammate is taking things one day at a time.

“I mean, like I said before, she’s just taking it day by day. We’re going to support her all the way,” Chiles shared. “I mean, she seems a lot better. … I mean, what I’ve seen, she’s her normal self. She’s hyper. I’m really, really happy for her. You know, it’s her story to tell. And whatever happens, happens.”

Tweet By Simone Biles During 2020 Tokyo Olympics Emotionally Impacted Her Teammates

Hoda Kotb then referenced a tweet Simone Biles posted after her withdrawals from the team competition on July 27 and the individual all-around the following day. The tweet read: “The outpouring love & support I’ve received has made me realize I’m more than my accomplishments and gymnastics which I never truly believed before.”

Jordan Chiles said the tweet by her 2020 Tokyo Olympics teammate made her emotional.

“I read it when she posted it and I was just like – she came, she knocked on my door and I was like, ‘You just almost made me cry,'” Chiles also said. “It’s something that you don’t see. You don’t know until you actually like see something happen and you’re just like, ‘Wow. That’s how I feel.’ That’s how she should feel. It was an amazing thing.”

Grace McCallum was also moved by the tweet.

“It’s a beautiful message,” he said.

Both Olympians said they hope to see Simone Biles compete in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics at least one more time.

“Absolutely,” McCallum also said. “We’re behind her 100 percent.”

Jordan Chiles then echoed her teammate. “(We’re) 100 percent behind her. We love her to death,” she said.

Should she feel that she is able to compete, the next 2020 Tokyo Olympics events for gymnast Simone Biles will be the apparatus finals. These events are the balance beam, women’s floor routine, vault, and uneven bars. They are scheduled to take place from Sunday, Aug. 1, through Tuesday, Aug. 3.

Biles has won Olympic four gold medals during her impressive gymnastics career.