Women’s Olympic gymnastics is a notoriously difficult discipline to predict.
Four reasons why:
1.) It’s an Olympic competition. Stakes are high and crazy stuff happens.
2.) The majority of the athletes are teenage girls, many of them undergoing rapid body transformations that will in turn have drastic effects on their completive abilities.
3.) The world’s best gymnasts only compete against each other once a year at the World Artistic Gymnastics Championships. Considering the pace of change in women’s gymnastics, results from a year ago have precious little predictive power.
4.) You never know what China is going to do (see Age Scandal, 2008).
London 2012 figures to be no different, with elite athletes from as far afield as Australia and Vietnam further muddying what was already certain to be a messy medal picture.
And while that might not give you total confidence in my prognosticating, it should give you ample reason to tune in and watch.
Before you do, a look at the favorites and challengers set to tumble their way into our sporting consciousness.