Gymnastics Ireland (GI) has apologized after a 2022 video that has now gone viral showed a judge at a medal ceremony in which she leaves a black girl without an award, images that have outraged stars such as American gymnast Simone Biles.
The event occurred in March 2022 in Dublin, although the video has gained prominence on social networks in recent days, to uncover a chain of disagreements between the authorities of this sport and the family of the little girl, which has not been made known to protect her.
The images show a row of minors in which the affected in question is the only black one, so it is striking that the judge passes by, although she looks at her for a few seconds, while hanging all the other medals to each of the winners.
Biles, Olympic medalist, has declared in her X account (formerly Twitter) that the viewing of the scene has "broken" her heart and has explained that she has sent the girl a video message to support her.
"There is no place for racism in sports or anything," wrote the gymnast, who has been joined by other teammates such as Jordan Chiles, also an Olympian, who described the incident as "very painful."
The Irish gymnastics federation (GI) stressed in a statement that it apologizes "unreservedly" to the little athlete and her family "for the discomfort caused."
"What happened that day should not have happened and for that we are deeply sorry. We also regret that what has happened since that date has caused more discomfort," GI added, referring to the management carried out, among others, by this body and by the highest sports authority of this country, Sports Ireland.
Its chief executive, Una May, said after the incident in March that it was not "racism," attributing it to a confusion on the part of the judge, who, she said, had her "medals tangled."
Now, GI insists it has "always acted in good faith" and "with the best of intentions" to try to resolve this "difficult and sensitive matter."
"We offered an apology in person after the event because we believed it was the best approach. Then we understood that mediation was the best way forward," the federation said in the statement.
- Simone Biles