As the 2012 Olympics games wind down tomorrow in London, a 9 month-old chinese baby girl is hard at work perfecting a triple Gienger flip on the uneven bars a world away in Bangkok. Zi Lei Nu – or “Growing Thunder Girl” in the English translation – is China’s gold medal hopeful for the 2016 Olympics in Rio.
Olympic gold may sound like a tall order from a girl who will be pushing 5 when the games finally roll around, an age when most Chinese gymnasts are well into retirement. But for a Li Lei, who became proficient on the vault and balance beam before she’s even learned to walk, it may be a matter of destiny. “She win gold, okay!” said the baby’s mother, 16 year-old Sum Ting Wong.
Zi’s father, 68 year-old Dum Gai oversees his baby’s rigorous 12 hour per day training regimen and knew his daughter was a champion from the moment she tumbled out of his wife’s vagina and executed a near-perfect full twisting Pak. “She number one fantastic!” he said proudly. “She’ll make everyone forget those hasbeens Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte.”
When asked what kind of pressure comes with an entire nation pinning its gymnastic hopes on an infant, the future star herself summed it up best by giggling, sticking her finger up her nose, then vomiting.
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