Local gymnasts disappointed but still determined after Olympics get postponed

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Two Olympic hopefuls from the metro will have to wait another year for a chance to compete in the 2020 Summer Games in Tokyo, Japan.

Gymnasts Kara Eaker and LeAnn Wong were disappointed to learn their shot at competing in the Olympics won’t happen this summer.

“It was pretty devastating hearing that the Olympics would postpone, but we’re just trying to look on the bright side,” Eaker said.

RELATED: Japanese PM and IOC chief agree to postpone 2020 Olympics

“We’ve got another year to improve our skills, just get better and better,” Wong added.

The International Olympic Committee announced the Games were being pushed back to a “date beyond 2020 but no later than summer 2021” in the wake of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

Although Eaker and Wong are keeping a positive attitude despite the move, their coach knows another year of waiting will be challenging.

“You don’t want to be injured. You want to stay strong, flexible, want to maintain a regimen that keeps you healthy, eat properly and continue to condition because in the end you have to peak and that has to last for about a month,” Al Fong said.

Eaker and Wong haven’t been able to train like they normally would since their gym is closed. A typical 5-hour workout has been condensed to just an hour in some cases, but the teens said there’s some good that’s come out of all of this.

“Having the school online is actually pretty helpful for us because we get to alter our training plans and train whenever we want and do school when we have the time,” Wong said.

It’s not how they envisioned spending the coming months, but Eaker and Wong said, if they’re ultimately selected to the team, it would be an honor to represent the United States whenever the Games happen.

“It will mean everything to us,” Eaker said.

This is the first time the Olympics have been rescheduled for something other than war. The last time the games were canceled was in 1944 because of WWII.

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