SportsAid athlete Louis Smith goes one better with Olympic silver on pommel horse
05 Aug 2012
SportsAid athlete Louis Smith added to the Olympic bronze medal he won four years ago in Beijing by winning a silver medal in the men's pommel horse competition at London 2012 on August 5.
As the gymnast admitted himself, the routine was good enough for gold, leaving him level on points with Hungarian rival Krisztian Berki who also scored 16.066. But Berki was awarded the gold on the strength of a higher execution score by completing an easier routine with better form.
Incredibly, this is the second time Smith has lost out on an Olympic medal this way, tying for second place with Croatia's Filip Ude in Beijing but awarded the bronze on the same technicality.
"It was tough," Smith said afterwards. "It's happened twice now, at two Olympic Games, being bumped down.
"I guess I'm used to it now. But to come second against one of the best pommel-horse workers the world has ever seen? I'm a happy guy."
Showing great sportsmanship, Smith congratulated the gold medal winner on his victory after the results were announced.
"I can't sit here with my face screwed up when I've got a silver at an Olympic Games," he added. "It's such a journey, not just for me but for every Olympic athlete.
"To perform one of my hardest routines cleanly knowing all my friends and family have come to watch, regardless of what medal it won, was an amazing feeling. I said this final would be a clash of the titans if we both went through our routines, and getting the same score shows how close it was."
SportsAid's hot tip for the future of British gymnastics: 17-year-old Frank Baines from Liverpool.
Photo: Action Images
As SportsAid’s patron, Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cambridge is helping to shine a light on the achievements and potential of young athletes throughout the UK – an inspiring generation who one day hope to represent the nation at the Olympic or Paralympic Games. SportsAid alumnus Sir Chris Hoy welcomed the patronage by saying, “SportsAid played an important role when I was starting out so I know what a huge boost this will be to the young sportsmen and women the charity helps today. As patron Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cambridge will give them the profile they deserve.”