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Worlds Start List and Meet-n-Greet: Jonathan Horton [Oct. 8th, 2009|12:11 pm]
The Gym Junkies


I realize I'm late in posting today's Meet-n-Greet profile. Part of the reason is that the start lists for Worlds have now been posted on the Universal Sports website. Here is the breakdown for Team USA:

Jonathan Horton - All-Around
Tim McNeill - All-Around
Jake Dalton - Vault
Wes Haagensen - Pommel Horse, Still Rings
Steven Legendre - Floor Exercise
Danell Layva - High Bar, Parallel Bars


Bridget Sloan - All-Around
Rebecca Bross - All-Around
Ivana Hong - Balance Beam, Uneven Bars
Kayla Williams - Floor Exercise, Vault

Seeing the lists just makes it more real, doesn't it? ;) On to the meet-n-greet profile for today.

For a few (let's be honest; how many were watching back then?) the first glimpse of Jonathan Horton came way back in 2002, when he could be seen picking up something dropped by Paul Hamm. For others, he was the one Tim Daggett referred to as "X Games" as he flipped his way around the high bar during the 2005 Nationals broadcast.

No matter how one was introduced to him, it’s fair to say that Jonathan Horton has done quite a lot in his career. A three-time World Team member, two-time American Cup champion, winner of two Olympic medals (team bronze and high bar silver), winner of six individual NCAA titles and the 2008 Nissen-Emery award, and the 2009 National All-Around Champion of the US, Jonathan seems to be the one to watch as this quad continues.

 Shortly after his victory, Jonathan told Inside Gymnastics, “In my head this is the beginning, I want to see if I can follow in the footsteps of guys like Blaine Wilson and John Roethlisberger, win five in a row. That’s not just something I’m saying. That’s something I expect myself to do. I expect myself to be the leader of this U.S. team for a long time.”

 “I know when I say stuff like that I can come off like I’m cocky or something, but that’s not what I mean by it. I have high expectations of myself and I enjoy people depending on me. I want to be able to depend on myself.”

 Jonathan looks to compete in the all-around at Worlds this year. Two years ago he finished a surprising fourth in the all-around at Worlds, mere tenths from the bronze. In Beijing, he finished tenth. He has stated that, just as in Beijing, he will begin on high bar with one set and, if he makes finals on that event, will add difficulty to his routine.

 In the same Inside Gymnastics article, Jonathan was quoted as saying he looks forward to leading the Team USA effort. “I like the idea of people depending on me… I enjoy that idea that people are looking at me as the leader of the team. I think it’s the role that I’ve wanted my whole career.”

 A quick YouTube search for Jonathan brings numerous results. The following are just a few:

Vault – 2009 Nationals Day Two: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=49-LsTm3-90

Parallel Bars – same event: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kSl2_R5Vnvg

Floor Exercise – same event: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zT0d-NyDsUU

Still Rings – same event: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w2gPF1G_gN0

High Bar – 2008 Olympic event finals: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ri4mTQoGiEI&feature=channel_page

Tomorrow meet Steven Legendre, the man who can fly.

EDIT TO ADD: Learn something new every day; both Inside Gymnastics and USAG's profile of Jonathan state that he competed at the 2004 Olympic Trials as a high school senior.