Skujyte acknowledges role of her coaches as she is elevated to bronze
Lithuanian heptathlete Austra Skujyte paid tribute to the way her coaches moulded her as a clean athlete after she was elevated to bronze at the Olympic Games London 2012.
Skujyte initially finished fifth in London at her fourth and final Games, in an Olympic journey that started at Sydney 2000, encompassed a silver medal at Athens 2004 and saw her struggle on her return to full-time competition in 2015.
In 2013, Lyudmyla Yosypenko, the Ukrainian fourth-place finisher, had been banned for a biological passport violation before bronze medallist Tatyana Chernova had all her results from August 2008 to February 2016 annulled for doping, moving Skujyte up to the third step of the podium.
Skujyte hailed her coaches’ holistic effect, saying: “To all my trainers… they made me an athlete, they made me a person and an honest fighter.”
She received her medal at the Lithuanian Sports Awards in the capital, Vilnius, in December 2018.
The International Olympic Committee introduced the Olympic Medal Reallocation Ceremony in May 2018 to award clean athletes with their rightful medal following the disqualification of athletes who have committed doping violations.
Clean athletes who have received reallocated medals are the subject of Take The Podium, a six-episode series on the Olympic Channel. As well as showing the medal reallocation ceremonies, the series will feature athletes sharing the impact the process has had on their lives after they were denied their special moment on the podium.