We recently caught up with U.S. junior elite Bailey Ferrer, who moved from her longtime gym, Orlando Metro, to Brandy Johnson’s earlier this year. Bailey, who has missed the last two seasons due to injuries, tells us about getting back to competition, her upgraded skills, and her long-term goals.

Inside Gymnastics: How is your training going in general?
Bailey Ferrer: Training is going great right now; I’m working on a couple upgrades and getting ready for season. I’ll be starting a little earlier than the normal elite season because we’ll be going to Canada as a team, so I’m just trying to prepare for that, working on the upgrades and starting to put the parts together for routines.

Inside: Are you excited to be a first-year senior in two months?
Bailey: For sure, I’m ready to go out there and prove that I haven’t lost anything, and to be able to prove that I can compete with the [older] girls and hold my own out there.

Inside: So you’ve trained at Brandy Johnson’s for some time now, could you tell us what it’s like training there?
Bailey: It’s great training at Brandy Johnson’s, the coaches are absolutely amazing and …they have a great program going. The girls are awesome, they’re great and I just love having them as my teammates. Just the whole vibe is a really good and positive environment.

Inside: When do you think you might return to national team camps?
Bailey: As of right now, I do not know. I think we are for sure trying to go for the January national team camp. We’re just trying to get my skills strong and get a few more upgrades before I try to go back there. But it’s definitely in the front of my head, and I know my coaches, too, are looking toward to when we can send in videos and try and get me in. It’s definitely going to be sooner than later, though.

Inside: Do you know when will your next competition be?
Bailey: February.

Inside: What are your goals for 2017?
Bailey: I have to do my optional qualification one more time, since I did not compete at P&Gs last year, so [to] just have a solid competition there [is one of my goals]. I’m not sure which competition that will be right now, but [I want] to qualify and then make P&Gs, and hopefully get on the senior national team.

Inside: Do you have any upgrades or new skills planned for this year?
Bailey: I’m working on an aerial layout on beam; I’m trying to upgrade my dismount—not sure which route we’re going with that yet. I have a piked full-in on floor, I’m working the double layout. On vault, just trying to get my double full back and [get it] clean. On bars I’m working on a Tkatchev, a piked Hindorff, and then I also have my normal Jaegar that I’ve had for a while now, but we’re just going to try to get all that into one bar routine.

Inside: What are your long-term gymnastics goals?
Bailey: To make international assignments and to hopefully make a Worlds team, and then I am committed to LSU, so to go there in 2019 and help them win a national championship.

Inside: Do you think that the U.S. women’s program will change now that Martha Karolyi has retired?
Bailey: I honestly think that it will stay successful like it always has been with Martha and Bela there. I think Valeri is going to do an amazing job. I went to some of his developmental camps and he was great.

Inside: Is there anything else you’d like to add?
Bailey: I am coming back and I am getting healthy and I’m ready for 2017 season and senior elite!

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Anna Rose Johnson writes about women’s artistic and rhythmic gymnastics. She loves Whippets, brownies, and full-twisting double layouts. Her writing portfolio can be viewed at: https://annarosejohnson.contently.com