In Santiago, Chile (AP) First black Olympic gold medalist Gabby Douglas trained 12-year-old Kaliya Lincoln. Five years later, the Frisco, Texas, adolescent wins the Pan American Games floor exercise gold in Chile.
The 17-year-old newbie on the U.S. gymnastics gold-winning team in Santiago is expected to improve her chances of making the Paris Olympics next year.
“It has been quite a year,” Lincoln said after winning gold. I must keep going since there are so many outstanding athletes. I think I learned from the best that being on this squad is a privilege.”
Lincoln defeated two favorites with 14.233 points after missing the world final earlier this month. Her fellow Pan American all-around champion Kayla DiCello and Brazilian Flávia Saraiva earned silver with 13.733 points.
Lincoln won silver in floor exercise at the U.S. Classic in August, tying with Joscelyn Roberson. She placed second in the U.S. National Gymnastics Championships behind Simone Biles.
Lincoln met Douglas, a three-time Olympic gold medalist, on "Undercover Boss: Celebrity Edition." The seasoned gymnast secretly helped three young athletes, including the Pan American champion, succeed. They became pals.