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Gymnastics at the 2012 London Summer Games:

Men's Horse Vault

Gymnastics at the 2012 Summer Games: Previous Summer Games


Host City: London, Great Britain
Venue(s): North Greenwich Arena, Greenwich, London
Date Started: July 28, 2012
Date Finished: August 5, 2012

Gold: KOR Yang Hak-Seon
Silver: RUS Denis Ablyazin
Bronze: UKR Ihor Radivilov
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South Korea’s Yang Hak-Seon, reigning World and Asian Games Champion, was the favorite to win gold in the men’s horse vault at the 2012 Summer Olympics, particularly after his closest rival Thomas Bouhail of France, 2008 Olympic silver medalist, 2009 and 2011 European Champion, and 2010 World Champion, suffered an injury to his leg that made his return to gymnastics uncertain. Flavius Koczi of Romania, the reigning European Champion and the 2009 world runner-up, was a potential medal favorite, but no one was seen as a true obstacle on the South Korean’s path to the Olympic crown. In the qualification round, however, Denis Ablyazin of Russia, bronze medalist in the vault at the most recent European Championships and the floor exercise at the London Games, posted the highest score, with 16.366 to Yang’s 16.333. Enrique González of Chile, who had already made history by placing fourth in the floor exercises in his country’s first appearance in Olympic gymnastics, finished a surprising third in the qualifications.

Koczi went first in the final, suffering penalties and finishing with a score of 15.633, which would not have been sufficient to qualify in the earlier round. It was not until halfway through the competition that a true bar was set by Ihor Radivilov of Ukraine, the 2012 European runner-up, with a total of 16.316. He was surpassed by Ablyazin, who posted 16.399, while González slid into third place with 16.183. Yang was the final gymnast and he chose the highest-difficult vault of the competition, 7.400, for his opener, but stepped forwards on his landing and received a low execution score of 9.066. His score for the first was still 16.466, however, higher than any other. Now in a good position to win gold, he eased the difficulty of his second vault down to 7.000, but performed it with sterling execution and earned a score of 16.600, more than enough to become South Korea’s first Olympic Champion gymnast.

Final Standings

Rank Athlete Age Team NOC Medal
1 Yang Hak-Seon 19 South Korea KOR Gold
2 Denis Ablyazin 19 Russia RUS Silver
3 Ihor Radivilov 19 Ukraine UKR Bronze
4 Enrique González 26 Chile CHI
5 Sam Mikulak 19 United States USA
6 Isaac Botella 28 Spain ESP
7 Flavius Koczi 24 Romania ROU
8 Kristian Thomas 23 Great Britain GBR
9 r1/2 Dmitry Kasperovich 34 Belarus BLR
10 r1/2 Matteo Angioletti 25 Italy ITA
11 r1/2 Oleh Verniaiev 18 Ukraine UKR
12 r1/2 Mohamed El-Saharty 21 Egypt EGY
13 r1/2 Shek Wai Hung 20 Hong Kong HKG
14 r1/2 Jake Dalton 20 United States USA
15 r1/2 Artur Davtyan 19 Armenia ARM
16 r1/2 Kim Su-Myeon 25 South Korea KOR
17 r1/2 Koji Yamamuro 23 Japan JPN