Sports

Rogers' comeback amazing, set for London Olympics

Brittany Rogers - Grace Chiu/Gymnastics Canada
Brittany Rogers
— image credit: Grace Chiu/Gymnastics Canada

Brittany Rogers’ road to the London Olympics has been anything but smooth. Now that she has made it to the big show, she’s hoping the big bumps are behind her.

The Coquitlam gymnast, who turned 19 on June 8, overcame a serious ankle injury suffered during a beam dismount in Australia in 2010 to qualify for the five-member Canadian team at the final Olympic selection meet June 28 in Gatineau, Que. Ranked sixth going into the meet, Rogers made the Olympic grade by climbing three spots and finishing third overall.

“As soon as they announced my name, I wanted to drop,” said Rogers, who remarkably overcame a fractured ankle that required surgery and kept her out a year to win a silver medal in World Cup vault in 2011 and gold in vault and bronze on balance beam earlier this year.

“I’ve worked so hard for this and I’m really glad it paid off. It’s a dream come true. It’s incredible.”

Last January, Rogers was part of a gymnastics team that helped Canada qualify for London at an Olympic qualifying meet in England, then returned home from overseas to joyfully discover via an email that she had been chosen the recipient of Sports BC’s 2011 Harry Jerome Comeback Award, which recognizes an athlete who has overcome an unusual setback to perform again at their peak level.

Past winners of the award include former Olympians Silken Laumann, alpine skier Emily Brydon and figure skater Karen Magnussen.

“So many things have been thrown at me in the past few days... it’s just amazing,” Rogers told The Tri-City News at the time. “It’s kind of surreal to me. Yes, I did come back from a huge injury but I never expected this kind of recognition for it. I’m so grateful.”

Amazingly, just a year before, Rogers was ready to call it a career.

“I was ready to quit,” she told The News. “I didn’t feel I had enough power and strength mentally and physically to come back. It was scary... the scariest thing in my life.

“But I went with my gut instinct, kept working and it’s worked out.”

Boy, has it.

• Women’s qualification in artistic gymnastics at the London Games starts Sunday.

 

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