Guam – Another Guam athlete has attracted international attention for his effort. Derek Horton didn’t even finish the Olympic cross country cycling race on Sunday, but a write up by Reuters says he “deserved a medal just for getting himself on the startline.”
The final Guam athlete to compete in the games, 39 year old Horton got through only 2 of the 6 laps Sunday when he was instructed to leave the track. He had fallen so far behind that he succumbed to the 80% rule which bars competitors from continuing if they fall more than 80% behind the leader.
The report quotes Horton as saying: “I was gasping for air … the lights just went out.”
The report also re-counts Horton’s work in a bike shop here on Guam and how he had to scrape together $6,000 of his own money just to qualify for the Olympics.
“I paid for my own trip to qualify, every time we travel it’s out of our own pocket,” he told Reuters. “I had to quit my job to come here – I help run a bike shop.”