What the world’s media said about Bermuda’s golden girl
From Oldham in the north of England, to the Australian outback and back to New York, Flora Duffy’s gold in the Tokyo Olympics was headline news.
In the UK, The Guardian acclaimed Flora’s stunning victory and drew attention to the size of Bermuda, notifying its readers that our population is less than the well-known seaside town of Bognor Regis.
The report starts, ‘The most glorious of rainbows formed over Rainbow Bridge in Tokyo early on Tuesday morning as the world’s greatest triathletes swam, pedalled and puffed their way around the Odaiba Marine Park. And, at the end of it, Bermuda discovered its first pot of Olympic gold.
‘It came in the form of the 33-year-old Flora Duffy, whose stunning victory meant the tiny Atlantic island – with its population of 62,278 even smaller than that of Bognor Regis – became the smallest country to win Olympic gold at a summer Olympic Games’.
The New York Times was succinct when it wrote, ‘In a sport where transitions are everything, Flora Duffy is the best of the best’.
Yahoo Sport Australia reported, ‘Flora Duffy has won Bermuda's first gold medal in Olympics history in an extraordinary never-before-seen moment in Tokyo’.
But it wasn’t just the bigger media outlets that were in awe of Flora.
‘Triathlon great Flora Duffy has won Bermuda's first Olympic gold medal with a commanding performance’, was the first paragraph of a story from The Armidale Express, the local paper for a city in the Northern Tablelands, New South Wales, Australia, population 24,504.
The Triathlete headline ran, ‘In 4th Olympics and a Tropical Storm, Flora Duffy Flawless for the Win’.
The report went on to say, ‘But no one could catch Duffy, who ran a 33:00 10K to win by over a minute. After four Olympics and a long journey through an eating disorder, quitting the sport, injuries, and comebacks, the Bermudan was determined to win the island nation’s first gold medal ever – in any sport’.
World Triathlon was effusive, reporting, ‘What an Olympic journey it has been for Bermuda’s Flora Duffy. On Tuesday morning at Tokyo 2020 she produced the performance of a true champion, powering through difficult conditions on the bike and then pulling away emphatically over the 10km run to win the Olympic gold she craved and that the display so richly deserved. After finishing 45th at London 2012, 8th in Rio the same year she won her first world title, today at Tokyo 2020 she topped the podium with one of the best races you are likely to see’.
But maybe it was the Oldham Times which summed it up best when it wrote, Triathlete Flora Duffy realised not just her own dream but that of a whole nation by winning Bermuda’s first Olympic gold medal.