Simone Biles wins Core Hydration Classic in her first gymnastics meet of Olympic season

Simone Biles opened the Olympic season with a statement victory at the Core Hydration Classic on Saturday.

In her first gymnastics meet of 2024, Biles scored 59.5 points, her best all-around total since returning to competition in 2023 for the first time since the Tokyo Olympics.

She prevailed by 1.85 points over two-time world all-around medalist Shilese Jones as gymnasts prepare for the Xfinity U.S. Championships and Olympic Trials, bidding for spots on the five-woman team for Paris.


"I was just happy to be back out there, get through those nerves again, feel that adrenaline," Biles said on NBC Sports. "I can't really complain how the first meet back was."

Biles had the single highest score on three of the four apparatuses — balance beam, floor exercise and vault — and second-best score on the uneven bars behind Jones.

She added difficulty since winning all of her all-around competitions last year, including her sixth world all-around title.

On Saturday, Biles performed one of her signature floor skills — the Biles II, or triple-double — for the first time since the Tokyo Olympics.

She performed one of her signature vaults — the Biles II, or Yurchenko double pike (double back flip) — without a coach spotting her in competition for the first time since 2021, too. Coach Laurent Landi spotted her at meets in 2023 out of precautionary safety, incurring a half-point deduction.

Next: the Xfinity U.S. Championships are May 30 to June 2 in Fort Worth, Texas, and the Olympic Trials are June 27-30 in Minneapolis.

The Olympic Trials all-around winner makes the team for Paris. A three-person selection committee picks the other four team members after trials, taking into account results dating back to last fall's world championships.

Biles and Jones are the leading contenders. Biles is the only American to outscore Jones in all-around competition over the last 20 months.

Tokyo Olympic medalists Jordan Chiles and Jade Carey were third and fourth Saturday, showing they're in contention after not making the 2023 World Championships team.

Suni Lee, the Tokyo Olympic all-around champion, performed on three of four events as she continues to work her way back from being diagnosed with two kidney diseases early last year.

Lee's best routine was on balance beam, where she had the second-best score behind Biles.

Gabby Douglas, the 2012 Olympic all-around gold medalist, withdrew after her first routine, uneven bars, where she fell off the apparatus twice before finishing her set.

Douglas competed on April 27 for the first time since the 2016 Rio Games after returning to training in late 2022.

Konnor McClain, the 2022 U.S. all-around champion, withdrew after injuring her left Achilles warming up for floor exercise, her coach told NBC Sports' John Roethlisberger.

McClain performed one routine, posting the third-highest balance beam score, before the injury. It was her first competition routine on the elite level since 2022 Nationals. She competed on the college level this past season for LSU.