U.S. women's gymnast Aly Raisman was having a rough time at the 2012 London Olympics before Tuesday's events.
She qualified for the individual all-around ahead of teammate Jordyn Wieber early in her Olympics career, frustrating those who were gunning for the American favorite in the event. Then she finished fourth in the all-around after losing a tiebreaker and frustrated people even more.
Then, all of a sudden, everything opened up for Raisman on day 11.
The 18-year-old not only won a tiebreaker for the bronze medal this time around in the women's balance beam, but she also captured gold in the women's floor exercise.
Raisman's gold on Tuesday was not only vindicating, it was a defining moment for the young gymnast. Raisman edged out 24-year-old Catalina Ponor and Russian star Aliya Mustafina and posted a brilliant score of 15.6 in the process.
While Gabby Douglas and Jordyn Wieber were hyped headed into London this summer, Raisman— with her simple consistency—was a bit overshadowed.
But it was Raisman's consistency—and her strength from within—that saw her succeed in London, while Wieber ultimately disappointed. Now she has her first gold medal in what figures to be one of many. She showed on Tuesday that she was not to be ignored.
One only has to look at the viral video of Raisman's parents to know where she gets her passion and fire.
But the young Olympian also has heart. She never would have been able to bounce back from her humble beginnings without it.
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