By Carly Patterson, 2004 Olympic All-Around Gymnastics Champion | Aug. 08, 2016, 2:32 p.m. (ET)
Carly Patterson celebrates on the podium after winning the gold medal in the women's all-around at the Athens 2004 Olympic Games.


Carly Patterson helped lead a resurgence of success for Team USA in gymnastics when she won gold in the all-around at the Athens 2004 Olympic Games, the first U.S. woman to do so in 20 years. She will serve as TeamUSA.org’s written correspondent during the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, providing her take on the women’s gymnastics competition.

Tonight was a very important night for the U.S. women's gymnastics team. They competed in the qualification round, which was their first competition of these Olympic Games. Not only were they trying to qualify to compete in the team competition, but also the individual all-around and the four event finals. So, you can see why this preliminary competition holds a lot of weight. 

Starting with floor, Gabby Douglas did a good routine, but not quite as solid as I’ve seen her do previously. Let me just say how impressive it is to see her and Aly Raisman back at another Olympic Games. I can’t imagine the pressure she must have been feeling being the reigning all-around champion and with her goal at this Olympics of wanting to be the repeat champ. Gabby went on to nail her bar set; I don’t think she could have done any better! Sticking the landing is the best feeling at the end of a great routine!

She finished with an amazing beam routine with a lot of pressure. It looks like she completely put the falls she had at Olympic Trials behind her. I remember falling both days at trials, and you have to go back home and work on what you missed and forget about it and that’s exactly what she did. She was a great champion in 2012 and is proving to be a great addition for team finals.

Laurie Hernandez came out with a great floor routine to start her first Olympics. I just love her artistry and showmanship. Her floor, beam and vault were all very impressive, and she exudes confidence. Maybe she will get her shot at all-around in Tokyo at the 2020 Olympics! She brings such great energy to the team!

Simone Biles is unstoppable! She hit a very solid floor routine with a huge score of 15.733. The amount of gold medals that she has the capability of winning at this Olympics is mind-blowing in our sport. (So glad I didn’t have to compete against her, haha)! You can’t say one negative thing about any of her routines, she always seems to be near perfect. Even if/when she has a small hiccup, her difficulty makes up for it. What an amazing athlete and asset to have on Team USA.

Madison Kocian executed a near flawless bar routine! She did exactly what she was chosen for, and I know that has to give her so much confidence going into the team finals and bar finals. It is definitely a lot of pressure to be chosen for a single event and it looks like she is handling it well. As a WOGA alum myself, I am so proud of her dedication and perseverance, and I’m rooting hard for her!

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I have really enjoyed watching Aly’s comeback, and she is definitely one of the fan favorites. I love her leadership and personality. She is the reigning Olympic gold medalist on the floor exercise and proved that with a great routine. I love her opening floor pass!

I’m partial to Aly’s beam because she does my dismount, “The Patterson,” which is so cool to see others do J. She had the one wobble, but other than that she was solid. From my personal friendship with her, I know she has the heart of a champion, and I’m looking forward to watching her in the all-around competition!

As a team, the U.S. women dominated tonight! I had no doubt in my mind that they would be number one and make it into team finals.  This group of girls is incredible to say the least! To finish 10 points ahead of any other country is just incredible, and I’m so proud of these girls!!!

- Carly Patterson