The USA had an amazing team called magnificent seven this team brought fame to the country in 1996 which brought home the first gold medal for their country. This took place at the 1996 United States Olympic women’s gymnastics event. The seven members of the team were Dominique Moceanu, Shannon Miller, Kerri Strug, Dominique Dawes, Amy Chow Jaycie Phelps and Amanda Borden. Dawes, Chow and Miller won individual medals.
Team competition – Compulsories
In team compulsories, United States team participated in the third session. For the first time, there were seven athletes on each team. Each team were allowed to put their six best team members up on each event however only the top five would count. On the United States team in both compulsories and optionals, Moceanu, Miller, Dawes, Phelps and Strug participated on all four events. Chow competed on bars and vault and Borden participated on beam and floor.
After the uneven bars, the team went to balance beam where Borden, Dawes and Strug performed. Phelps fell off the beam during the fouette jump element and Miller followed with a flawless. Moceanu secured the United States.
The competition started on the uneven bars and Dawes and Chow managed to qualify for the finals. The team went on the balance beam where Miller managed to get a great high score and qualified for the finals. The event had a massive falling of Americans due it being held in Atlanta. The floor exercise allowed Monceanu, Dawes, Strug and Bordon all did well on this event. Strug qualified first.
The team competition the team was allowed to perform 2 vaults but the higher of the two were counted. Moceanu vaulted with a narrow lead, needing to secure the gold medal.
The historic moment of this team was when Strug vaulted next and fell onto the mat. When she stood up, it became obvious that she had an injury to her ankle. Strug was then encouraged by Bela Karolyi the coach too vault again.
The other reason she needed to perform again was that Strug was in a tight contest with Moceanu to qualify for the All-Around competition. Each country could only send three gymnasts to the All-Around finals. Had she not vaulted again she would have ended fourth and not be able to qualify.
Strug accomplished her routine well and nearly landed well but she immediately collapsed in pain. The team managed to achieve gold. Strug became ad admired figure after that. She qualified for the vault finals and the All-Around competition.
The gold medal called magnificent seven,victory was considered extraordinary as the Soviet Union has won the events since the 1950s. The United States had never achieved to end up as the winners in the Olympics or the World Championships so the victory on the home soil become something that ensured the love of gymnastics even more.
Winning the gold medal instantly meant the team earned themselves a place in American Olympic and gymnastics history. They were icons in the public to the American public and did many tours, received endorsement deals and did many interviews.