London 2012: US Gymnast Jonathan Horton Gunning for Return Olympic Bid

Robin JutkiewiczCorrespondent IIIMay 17, 2012

TOKYO, JAPAN - OCTOBER 12:  Jonathan Horton of the United States competes on the Horizontal Bar aparatus in the Men's Team Final during day six of the Artistic Gymnastics World Championships Tokyo 2011 at Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium on October 12, 2011 in Tokyo, Japan.  (Photo by Lintao Zhang/Getty Images)
Lintao Zhang/Getty Images

Jonathan Horton will more than likely seal the deal at the Visa National Championships in San Jose this June. The Summer Olympics 2012 will be his second opportunity to prove he still has the stuff Olympians are made of.

Horton began running around a gym at around five years old. An active tot, his daredevil antics steered his family to channel that energy in a safer, more productive atmosphere. Needless to say, it was the right move.

The number of medals and honors Horton has claimed spans 14 years. His NCAA career at Oklahoma University includes six titles and 18 All-American honors, a record that has yet to be broken.  In 2008, Horton was a member of an injured US Olympic team that won the bronze medal. He also grabbed an individual silver medal for his high bar routine. Click here for the video.

At Worlds in 2011, Horton again aided his team in capturing bronze, but just missed the cut for the individual all-around competition as only two team members are allowed to advance. That honor went to Danell Leyva and John Orozco. Horton is not the bitter type though, for him it is all about the team.

A misstep on vault during team finals turned into trouble for his left foot, with two broken bones and a torn ligament. Post-surgery, Horton slowly made his way back and is now in good form and ready to fight for a spot on the US Olympic team.

Horton’s energy is infectious and his dedication to the sport beyond reproach. He would make an excellent lead-off gymnast for the team competition. Whether or not Horton gets a coach seat on a plane headed to London, he will always be first class.