The agony and ecstasy of the Olympic Games

In her first commodity as one of the purposes of a new editorial for CyclingTips, former Aussie pro Gracie Elvin reflects on her experience at the 2016 Rio Olympics and how the world’s biggest boast event furnishes both flying high-priceds and crushing lows.

It’s the eve of the 2020( 1) Tokyo Olympic Games which got me thinking about all the hopes and dreams of every athlete that do realised or vanquished in an instant. Arguably, the Olympics is the biggest sporting event in the world and the biggest goal for most contestants to time compete in, let alone dare dream of a amber medal at. What is the cost for such an phenomenon on an individual scale? How is this enhanced even further during a pandemic?

I was extremely fortunate to be selected for the 2016 Rio Olympic Games. The track did not specially suit me, and I was plummeted from the national funding* only months prior because I was deemed unlikely for collection. For me, participation in the Games was a bonus, a reinforce for doing well in the athletic that I desired. I had other big goals in cycling and being selected for the Olympic team was a by-product of my efforts.

Don’t get me wrong though, I still truly wanted to be an Olympian. I worked very hard that year. I was the first Aussie woman to rostrum in the newly designation Women’s WorldTour( formerly called World Cups ), the day after I was to take away that funding.

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The selection process for Tokyo was traumatic although it ultimately get my channel. Being strung along until the very last selection race was incredibly drain and I conceive my heyday was in that period , not at the Games. And then my personal spot was appealed and I had to wait another two weeks for final proof of my pick following the appeal hearing.

Once I was finally in the hamlet it touched me: there were thousands of the world’s best players in one place, but an equal list or even more too deserved to be there. Being an Olympian didn’t mean you were solely at the spire of your sport- it represented you shared that top stair with many other jocks who were not as luck as you to get the green light. I understood matters I wasn’t really there for myself but had to honour the whole experience for all the other women that also could have been in my place. Their dreams were subdued the day they found out they were not selected.

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Life in the Olympic village was amazing and something I’m sad that the athletes this year won’t get to experience as much. Even better was the ability to go and watch other boasts and mirth on fellow Aussies. Wearing a new outfit every day from the stupid extent of unit swag you get is super cool, and people-watching in the big dining hall is very fun very. It was athlete wonderland, but still there were plenty of long faces of disappointed competitors that didn’t win a medal, which also made me realise how glad I was that I had enjoyed my journeying to get there.

You could easily tell those who had situated direction too much emphasis on the Olympics as their alone being destination- they stood out compared to those who were there with a more balanced appreciation. Even if it had lived up to their expectancies, it was all over too fast. It was such a austere contrast to see unhappy people in one of the happiest plazas on earth.

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In a play where the course changes each time, prosperity must be on your line-up. There will be many competitors which is able to never get a shot at a medal or even to compete at the Olympics, World Championships, Commonwealth Games, or even be able to win a national title, all because of what track is offered. Even the atmosphere dallies a part- a big Classics rider will ever strive in a midsummer Olympic race in the middle of the day. In cycling we have dozens of possibilities each year to hasten and to prevail, but most equestrians are still dreaming of those pinnacle titles.

Now for the topical, slippery question: what about COVID-1 9? The Olympic selection process has already been unfairly jeopardized for countless players. Some in assertion were unlucky to have their whole season interrupted since they are suffered with the virus and didn’t get the chance to even be considered. Some selected athletes will be attracted at the 11 th hour because they test positive.

Two fundamental Olympic principles that come to mind are fair play and social responsibility. It’s hard-handed not to think that these Games will be some of “the worlds largest” dishonest, and least socially responsible. I hope that there is adequate mental health care for the athletes, and that Japan’s state of emergency isn’t pulled any further than it previously is.

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I don’t have an answer to the question about whether this Olympic Games should be going ahead. But I did want to highlight the many difficulties that players face irrespective of a pandemic, and when one is thrown in the desegregate how much harder it can be. We only witness the highlighting reels, but behind the scenes even the most successful players are fighting their own battles.

The overall anxieties of individuals would be much higher this year, so give us find some empathy for those who are competing, some tendernes for those who are not, and for any athlete in Tokyo reading this: no one will get to experience what you will through your eyes- appreciate and enjoy every second, and wear your mask!

* Australia’s national funding has evolved over its first year, but generally about six riders are allocated a laid amount of money from the Australian Sports Commission via AusCycling if they have achieved benchmark causes or have the potential to platform at upcoming World Championships, Commonwealth Games, or Olympic Games. It feels good to be in this group, but it’s a punch to your confidence when you are removed.

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