training in Curitiba will return home.
Barbosa is cautious when asked about her
Olympic aspirations, which is understandable when
you consider how surprised she was to medal in
Stuttgart. “My goal is to compete well and get a
good result,” she says.
Barbosa certainly knows who her main competition should be, since she watched Shawn Johnson
dominate the Pan American Games and take three
golds at worlds. “I really like her,” Barbosa says.
“She is a nice person. She’s an amazing gymnast.
There is no doubt about that after what we saw.”
Barbosa is not bad, either, and her success in
Stuttgart has finally got her thinking of future possibilities. For example, does she believe she can
defeat Johnson? “Maybe someday, if I train really
hard,” she allows. “If I make a huge improvement I
think it would be possible.”
There is no reason to believe otherwise. Barbosa
already has enough tricks to compete with the best,
and improved execution will raise her scores to
even higher levels. If everything comes together in
Beijing for Jade Barbosa, she just might reach yet
another milestone for Brazil. IG
IG thanks Coral Borda for her assistance with this story.
After the results showed Barbosa as a 2007
world all-around bronze medalist, she
received hugs from Vicelia Florenzano (left),
President of the Brazilian Gymnastics
Confederation, and Eliane Martins, national
team coordinator. Teammate Lais Souza
looks on from the side.
THOMAS SCHREYER (2)
Go for the Gold!!