In 2023, gymnast Carlos Yulo intends to return to the Olympics by placing in the top eight of the all-around at the September FIG Artistic Gymnastics World Championships in Antwerp, Belgium.
Gymnasts from China, Japan, and England have already won 15 of the 94 available spots for the 2024 Paris Olympics, making it more difficult for the Tokyo Olympian to secure a spot.
“I will work to acquire the new talents that will be necessary in 2024… There is no pressure [even if I make mistakes],” Yulo said in Filipino to Rappler.
“Of course, what I meant was not to be careless… It’s acceptable for me to make mistakes in the talents I haven’t mastered, but it’s imperative that I qualify for the global championships, as it will be the highlight of 2023.”
Yulo, who is back in the country and training at the recently launched training facility in Intramuros, Manila, supported by sports patron Manny V. Pangilinan, has not slowed his workload despite the holiday season.
Yulo reported that he practices with coach Munehiro Kugimiya for two hours in the morning and between three and four hours in the afternoon.
Kugimiya stated that he wants Yulo to be the best all-around gymnast in Asia after the 2024 Asian Championships. And the diminutive Filipino celebrity swore to be prepared for the arduous job.
“I comprehend [the more difficult procedure] and perceive it as well… Yulo, who has been living in Japan for the past few years. I have no choice but to do my best and grow as much as I can to qualify for the Olympics.”
In order to qualify for the Olympics, the 22-year-old must amass enough points in four crucial competitions in Cottbus, Germany, Doha, Qatar, Baku, Azerbaijan, and Cairo, Egypt.
In a recent ceremony held at the Heritage Hotel in Pasay, the Gymnastics Association of the Philippines (GAP) and KG Management honored Yulo and several other gymnasts, including American Aleah Finnegan.
Kugimiya as Coach of the Year, Miguel Besana (men’s artistic gymnastics), Carl Joshua Tangonan (men’s aerobics), Charmaine Dolar (women’s aerobics), and Breana Labadan (women’s rhythmic gymnastics) are all recipients of awards.
Yulo won the most medals on behalf of the Philippine team in the 31st Southeast Asian (SEA) Games in Vietnam in 2022, with five golds and two silvers.
He then won three golds and one silver in the 9th Asian Senior Artistic Gymnastics Championships in Doha, Qatar.
At the 41st FIG Artistic Gymnastics World Championships in Liverpool, England, Yulo concluded his season by bringing home silver and bronze medals in the men’s vault and parallel bars competitions, respectively.