KAMLOOPS — The Canadian Olympic Committee (COC) and International Olympic Committee (IOC) member, six-time Olympian and five-time Olympic medallist, Hayley Wickenheiser, awarded Dylan Armstrong his Beijing 2008 bronze medal on Sunday, at a ceremony inside the Tournament Capital Centre in Kamloops.
Joined by Scott Russell, acting as emcee, family, friends and hundreds from the hometown Kamloops community, Armstrong watched his Beijing performance on the big screen before Hayley Wickenheiser presented him with his medal in authentic medal ceremony style. The event was designed to re-create Armstrong’s medal-winning performance and to give him the moment with his fans, friends and family that he wasn’t able to have in 2008.
Armstrong becomes Canada’s first Olympic medallist in a throwing event in almost a century and the first shot put athlete in Canada to ever win an Olympic medal. He now has his sights set on Rio 2016 but will not compete in competitions for the remainder of 2015 due to surgery on his elbow.
The news of the medal re-allocation came more than six years after Armstrong’s performance in Beijing when the COC announced in August last year that the IOC had re-assigned the medal.
Armstrong made his Olympic debut at Beijing 2008 where he initially finished fourth, missing out the bronze by just one centimetre. In July 2013 original third place finisher Andrei Mikhnevich of Belarus was banned for life following a re-test of his doping sample from the 2005 IAAF World Championships.
All of his results dating back to August 2005 were annulled by the IAAF and the IOC followed through in stripping Mikhnevich of his Olympic medal, leaving Armstrong to be upgraded to the bronze medal position. Armstrong was also awarded the bronze medal from the 2010 IAAF World Indoor Championships as a result of Mikhnevich’s disqualification.
“I am honoured to have been awarded the bronze medal here in my hometown of Kamloops. Having Hayley present the medal to me while surrounded by family, friends and tons of local community members was something really special.”
Dylan Armstrong, two-time Olympian, Beijing 2008 Olympic bronze medallist
“Congratulations to Dylan on his medal-winning performance. Dylan is finally and justly being recognized for his outstanding achievement, and now becomes Canada’s first Olympic medallist in a throwing event in almost 100 years. What an honour for him and for our entire country!”
Marcel Aubut, President, Canadian Olympic Committee
“It was a privilege to be here in Kamloops today to present Dylan with his medal. Dylan worked extremely hard to deliver the performance he did on that day in Beijing, so to be recognized for that with a bronze medal is an outstanding achievement.”
Hayley Wickenheiser, IOC Member, six-time Olympian, five-time Olympic medallist