So few of us make it anywhere near the Olympic stage that we can easily imagine how gutwrenching it would be for an athlete to get remarkably close to the games but fall short of the mark. That was the case in 2008 for Soren Thompson, whose Olympic fencing dream was crushed during the qualification process when he completely tore his right hamstring. Thompson is a 2005 graduate of Princeton University, where he had become a star in this incredibly unique, but underrated sport.
To be fair, the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing would not have been his first foray onto the world stage. In fact, Thompson placed seventh in the men’s individual epee during the previous 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens, achieving the best result for the United States since 1956 and second overall. He was hoping that 2008 would be a chance to repeat or exceed his accomplishments from 2004, but alas, found himself working at Hycrete, a clean technology company in New Jersey for the better part of three years.
Then last fall, Thompson began feeling an urge to return. And during the Spring of 2012, he officially left Hycrete to give all of his attention to a singular goal. Now that he’s back, the Princeton alum can’t wait for the games to begin.
“There is no limit to what I can achieve, but that being said, fencing has a lot of great athletes and it is going to be tough. I need to put myself in a position to succeed and execute. I expect to be prepared.”
An injured hamstring can often end careers, but on occasion, overcoming it can be gold. We wish him well.
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