London 2012: Is Jordyn Wieber Headed to Olympic Gymnastics Greatness? Oh Yeah!

Robin JutkiewiczCorrespondent IIIMay 21, 2012

DALLAS, TX - MAY 14:  Gymnast, Jordyn Wieber, poses for a portrait during the 2012 Team USA Media Summit on May 14, 2012 in Dallas, Texas.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Unless the sky falls on Jordyn Wieber, the 17-year-old will be on her way to the 2012 London Olympic games. You can bank on it. The strongest all-around (AA) artistic female on the US team, Wieber is not just heading to merry old England hoping to medal, she is without question, the gymnast to beat.

The defending AT&T American Cup AA champion began training in 1999. Within eight years, she was making her mark in the sport, winning silver for the AA at the Junior Pan American Championships. From that point Wieber’s star continued to rise with multiple US and international titles. Click to view her winning floor routine from the 2012 Kellogg’s Pacific Rim Championships.

This does not suggest Wieber has no competition. Her own teammate, Aly Raisman, is also in the hunt for the gold, as is Romanian Catalina Ponor and Russia’s Aliya Mustafina. But it is Wieber that continues to create a buzz both in America and abroad.

Since Marta Karolyi took over as National Team Coordinator after the U.S. bombed at the 2000 Sidney Olympics, the team has turned into a powerhouse that is both admired and feared. Russia, Romania and China have taken note and have worked overtime to increase routine values and decrease execution faults.

Although she is flying high, the pressure is on for Wieber’s first Olympic bid. Thus far she has held her own on the international stage, but this is the Olympics and nerves will play a role in everyone’s performances. Wieber will need to keep her own sky aloft and reach for those stars. If she does, she could take the world by storm. If not, there are a number of other competitors waiting anxiously in the wings.