American teenager Maame Biney gave an emotional and heartbreaking response to the end of her bid for a medal in the women’s 500 meters in short-track speedskating.
Biney, 18, was heavily promoted by NBC in the buildup to the Winter Olympics, with her infectious smile and intriguing backstory resonating with viewers.
However, she was unable to overcome a poor start in Tuesday night’s quarterfinal and placed fourth to be ousted from the competition.
Sofia Prosvirnova, an Olympic Athlete from Russia, bumped Biney on the first bend but was not penalized by the referee and went on to win the race.
“It is OK,” she said, in the post-race interview zone, as tears rolled down her face. “I will be fine. I just have to wait four more years to be able to get back into this big stage so I can’t wait for that.”
Biney said that coach Anthony Barthell is “probably going to yell at me” as she was not as aggressive as usual and paid the price.
She will also compete in the 1,500 but is not expected to be a contender.