Better late than never: Rob Heffernan to get Olympic bronze in Cork next month
There will be a special medal presentation on November 3rd at the City Hall in Cork
Ireland’s Robert Heffernan after crossing the finish line of the London 2012 Olympic Games Men’s 50km race walk. Photograph: Getty Images
Over four years after the event, although clearly better late than never, Rob Heffernan will receive his Olympic bronze medal at a special presentation on Thursday, November 3rd at the City Hall in Cork.
Earlier this year Heffernan was retrospectively awarded the bronze medal from the 50km walk at the 2012 London Olympics, after Russia’s gold medal winner Sergey Kirdyapkin was finally disqualified for doping: the Cork athlete had deliberately delayed any medal presentation until after the Rio Olympics, where he finished sixth in the same event.
Now, in a joint presentation by the Lord Mayor of Cork Cllr Des Cahill and the Olympic Council of Ireland (OCI), Heffernan will receive his Olympic medal in the company of his family and friends and other representatives of the athletics community in Ireland.
“This is always what I dreamt about, being presented with an Olympic medal,” said Heffernan. “It would of course have been wonderful to have received it in London but now to receive it on Irish soil in my home City of Cork, with my own family, friends, supporters on the 100 year anniversary of 1916, is a fitting and very special way for Irish people to celebrate Irish Olympic sporting success”.
The OCI will be represented by acting president Willie O’Brien, given long-serving president Pat Hickey has stepped aside from the role as he awaits the outcome of his alleged ticket-touting offences during the Rio Olympics.
“It is the first time an Olympic medal will be presented on Irish soil,” noted O’Brien. “It will be a very proud occasion of the Olympic Movement in Ireland, Athletics Ireland and of course for Rob, his family, friends and supporters”.
Speaking of behalf of Cork city, the Lord Mayor also said; “I am honoured on behalf of the people of Cork to facilitate the presentation of an Olympic Bronze Medal by the Olympic Council of Ireland to one of our own Rob Heffernan, a proud Corkonian and a model and inspiration to the youth of today.
“It is only right and fitting that we recognise the tenacious efforts by Rob in representing his country on an international stage. We all take pride in his achieving this most coveted Olympic Bronze Medal and I look forward to welcoming you to City Hall on November 3rd.”
It will be a ticket-only event and applications for tickets can be made by forwarding your name, full address and contact telephone number to the following portal: firstname.lastname@example.org
The first 400 applications will receive a ticket admitting two to the presentation ceremony.