Aly Raisman finished fourth in heartbreaking fashion in the individual all-around competition, and the disappointment from missing out on a medal will fuel her to earn more hardware in her remaining events.
The 18-year-old American finished with a score of 59.566, but so did Russia’s Aliya Mustafina, as noted by NBCOlympics.com.
The International Gymnastics Federation’s remedy for a tie in the all-around is to drop the gymnasts’ lowest scores and then judge them on the total of their three best events, as noted by Camille Powell of the Washington Post.
Powell quoted Raisman saying, "They said that they took out the lowest score and added the rest and she had the highest score. No one told me that, I found out from one of the media people."
A result like this stings forever. Raisman may not ever be able to shake the knowledge that she would have medaled in the competition had she been awarded one one-thousandth of a point more in any of the four apparatuses.
This is the kind of loss that can cripple an athlete, or push them to new heights. Raisman has showed remarkable character and leadership throughout the competition, captaining the American team to a gold medal.
She will compete in both the balance beam and floor exercise finals before her 2012 Olympics are over. She posted the fifth-best score in qualifying for the beam and recorded the top mark in the floor.
Raisman certainly has the potential to win the floor, and will medal at the very least. However, the image of watching the other athletes take the podium after the all-around competition will motivate an inspired performance in the beam as well.
She is a talented gymnast who may not get another chance to compete in the Olympics. There will be so much on the line for her in these remaining events, and Raisman has the talent and mentality to flourish under these conditions.
Raisman will not fade quietly at these Games, and she will cause a stir during both the balance beam and floor exercise finals.