Canadian gymnast Victoria Moors, who helped her team to an historic fifth place in the team final at the 2012 Olympic Games, announced her retirement from gymnastics before the competition at today’s Canadian Championships.
Moors’ future in the sport has been a question mark since her still mysterious release from last summer’s Commonwealth Games team. Despite traveling with the delegation and attending training sessions in London, Moors was dismissed from the team and sent home before the Games began. She made her return to competition at Elite Canada this February, but with two heavily downgraded routines, and struggled with her floor routine in finals.
This was the last time fans were to see her compete, and questions again surrounded the gymnast when this weekend’s Canadian Championships roster surfaced without her name on it. It meant she wouldn’t be eligible for the Pan American Games this July, and therefore probably also wouldn’t be able to contend for a spot on the World Championships team in a year where her team could possibly struggle to qualify a full team to next year’s Olympics. Was she just taking a break from competition and waiting until next year to get her big routines back before returning? Or was Elite Canada it?
Our answer came today, as Moors herself announced the news to fans in attendance at junior and senior finals in Gatineau. It’s a sad day for the Canadian program, which has been plagued with injuries and inconsistency since their success in 2012, prompting now collegiate gymnasts like Peng Peng Lee and Brittany Rogers to announce their elite comebacks.
But clearly, it was the best decision for Moors, who is leaving the sport as one of Canada’s best in history, with numerous international accomplishments and two skills (the double-twisting double layout on floor and the front layout half dismount on bars) named after her.
She became known for success on the World Cup circuit, competing at three American Cup meets in the U.S. where she came in 4th twice and earned the bronze medal in 2013. Her 10th place finish at World Championships in 2013 was a highlight of her career, and the best-ever Canadian women’s all-around result at a Worlds or Olympic Games at the time (a year later, teammate Ellie Black would break this record with her own 9th-place finish).
She would also earn individual event medals at the London Test Event, Pan American Championships, and the World Challenge Cup, but will most be remembered for her contributions to teams, helping Canada earn silver at the Test Event, bronze at Pacific Rims, and of course, their historic 5th place finish at the Olympic Games when she was just 15.
Despite injuries in London that took her out of the all-around, she contributed a 13.7 on bars and a huge 14.6 on floor in team finals to help her team become one of the best in the world. “Our goal was to just finish top eight,” she said following the team final. “But coming to the Olympics and finishing fifth, we weren’t expecting that. It’s unreal right now. We upset a lot of big countries. We definitely raised the bar for Canada.”
Now 18, Moors is graduating from high school and as we learned today, also graduating from the sport. She will be greatly missed by all in the gymnastics community, though we wish her tremendous success in whatever she wishes to pursue from here and will remember her always as hilariously funny and insightful underneath her shy exterior, tremendously talented on all four events, and a legend in the sport. Best of luck, Victoria!
Article by Lauren Hopkins