RIO BOUND: Louis wants to be an Olympic king again

Louis Smith at the press conference to reveal his call up for the Rio Olympics.
Louis Smith at the press conference to reveal his call up for the Rio Olympics.
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Louis Smith sees no reason why he can’t taste Olympic medal success again.

The 27 year-old from Eye, near Peterborough, has been selected for the Great Britain gymnastics team for the 2016 Olympics in Rio. It will be his third successive Games and he’s won medals in the previous two.

Louis Smith in action on the pommel horse for Great Britain.

Louis Smith in action on the pommel horse for Great Britain.

Smith became the first GB gymnast to win an individual Olympic medal for 100 years when taking bronze on the pommel horse in Beijing in 2008.

Four years later the Huntingdon Gym Club star thrilled a host nation when helping GB to a team bronze in the 2012 London Olympics, before collecting an individual silver medal, again in the pommel horse.

Smith, who cashed in his new-found celebrity status after the London Games, has had to convince GB chiefs he remained serious about his sport.

“Becoming European champion and finishing second in the world last year, hopefully proved that I was serious again,” Smith stated.

“I’ve always been a gymnast first and everything else second. It’s my passion and competing in an Olympic Games is as good as it gets.

“I’ve been on an incredible journey, but it’s not over yet.

“I feel in great form and I want to do my best for my country again.

“I’ve sacrificed a lot of shallow things in my life to concentrate on my sport. I’ve not broadcast that fact, but it’s all been about proving to myself and to others that I meant business as a gymnast.

“The goal is obviously another medal. I want to help the team to success again and if I can get another individual medal that would be great also. I really don’t see why it can’t happen.

“Moments like this make me so proud and I can’t wait to get out to Rio and start competing.”

The gymnastics events in Rio take place between August 6 and August 21.

Smith, a for mer student at Sir Arthur Mellows Village College, has been involved in gymnastics since he was seven years old.