Gymnast Oksana Chusovitina plans to try for her ninth Olympics, according to the Uzbekistan Olympic Committee.
The 46-year-old became the oldest gymnast in Olympic history at last year’s Summer Games in Tokyo. She said before the Olympics that she would be competing in her final Games, and following her last routine, she acknowledged the crowd, almost as if saying goodbye.
She later said she would return for the 2022 Asian Games that have since been postponed until 2023 due to COVID-19. The games were originally scheduled for September in Hangzhou, China, but that country has recently undergone a series of lockdowns due to a rise in COVID-19 cases.
After Chusovitina won the vault title at the Uzbekistan national championships last weekend, she revealed that, due to the postponement of the Asian Games, she would aim to go all the way to the 2024 Paris Games.
Chusovitina, who last year broke her own record for Olympic gymnastics appearances with eight, began her career competing for the Soviet Union in the late 1980s. She later began competing for Uzbekistan and Germany, representing the Unified Team, before solely competing for Uzbekistan.
In order to make the 2024 Games, Chusovitina likely will look to qualify during the 2024 World Cup series on vault.
A two-time Olympic medalist – including a team gold in Barcelona in 1992 and a vault silver in Beijing in 2008 – Chusovitina could tie the record for Olympic appearances for a woman in any sport. The record is currently held by Nino Salukvadze, a shooter from Georgia who competed in her ninth Olympics in Tokyo at age 52.