US- American gymnast Simone Biles is now gymnastics most decorated athlete after the 26-year-old clinched her sixth Worlds all-around title to reach a historic 34th career medal.
Biles achieved the milestone on Friday, at the 2023 World Artistic Gymnastics Championships in Antwerp, Belgium, winning the women’s individual all-around final to secure her 21st world championship gold medal.
The four-time Olympic gold medalist showed confidence upon stepping into the Sportspaleis, beaming with smiles and was greeted with applause by the crowd in the fully-packed venue.
She tallied 58.399 to carry the day – it was her first global title since 2019. Brazil’s Rebecca Andrade (56.766) clinched silver while 2022 World all-around silver medallist Shilese Jones (56.332) took the bronze medal.
“I was emotional because 10 years ago I won my first Worlds, now we’re back here,” Biles said afterward. “So, it was emotional. It means everything to me, the fight, everything that I’ve put in to get back to this place to feel comfortable and confident enough to compete.”
She now ties legendary gymnast Uchimura Kohei of Japan as the only female gymnasts to take six all-around crowns. Also, Biles is now the only gymnast to win World all-around titles a decade apart.
Biles won her first title in 2013 and her latest in 2023 while the previous record was held by Russia’s Svetlana Khorkina – her first and last titles were six years apart.
With 34 World and Olympic medals, Biles is now the most decorated gymnast ever, either male or female.