17 Nov 2020
Olympic.org picks out some of the most impressive performances from former Youth Olympic Games (YOG) athletes in recent weeks, as more and more elite sporting events return in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Mikkel Frølich Honoré
Danish cyclist Mikkel Frølich Honoré caught the eye during October’s Giro d’Italia, playing a key role in helping team-mate João Almeida keep hold of the coveted maglia rosa for 15 successive stages. Honoré, who won the time trial at the YOG Nanjing 2014 en route to a silver medal in the men’s team event, also impressed individually on the second stage – from Alcamo to Agrigento – as he powered away from the peloton in the final climb before being caught by the experienced Diego Ulissi and Peter Sagan. The 23-year-old Dane ended the Grand Tour in 30th place in the general classification, with Almeida eventually finishing in fourth as Britain’s Tao Geoghegan Hart claimed the maglia rosa.
British golfer Robert MacIntyre – who competed at the YOG Nanjing 2014 – claimed his first European Tour title in dramatic fashion in early November, as he birdied four of his last six holes to win the Cyprus Showdown at Aphrodite Hills. The 24-year-old’s impressive finish gave him a one-stroke victory over Japan's Masahiro Kawamura and lifted him to a career-high 62nd in the world rankings. MacIntyre, who finished in a tie for 13th at Nanjing 2014, started playing on the European Tour only last year, after graduating from the second-tier Challenge Tour, but has since enjoyed a string of impressive performances at the top level, including finishing in a tie for sixth at the Open Championship, helping him secure the Tour’s 2019 Rookie of the Year award.
Kata Blanka Vas
Hungarian cyclist Kata Blanka Vas claimed a silver medal in the under-23 cross-country race at the 2020 UCI Mountain Bike World Championships, which were held in Leogang (Austria) from 5 to 11 October. The 19-year-old – who won the criterium at the YOG Buenos Aires 2018, helping Hungary clinch a bronze medal in the women’s combined team event – was beaten by France’s Loana Lecomte by just 1.11 seconds over the 15.8km course.
France’s Doriane Delassus won two silver medals at the 2020 European Junior Canoe Slalom Championships, which were held in Kraków (Poland) from 1 to 4 October. The 17-year-old, who won gold in the C1 obstacle slalom and silver in the K1 obstacle slalom at the YOG Buenos Aires 2018, finished second behind the Czech Republic’s Tereza Kneblová in the women’s C1 event in Kraków. She then teamed up with compatriots Camille Castryck and Laurine Salesse to finish second in the C1 team event.
Swedish golfer Marcus Kinhult secured two impressive top-10 finishes on the European Tour in October, as he continues to make a name for himself on the professional circuit. The 24-year-old, who claimed his first European Tour victory at last year’s British Masters, finished in a tie for sixth at last month’s Scottish Open before finishing joint 10th at the Tour’s flagship PGA Championship at Wentworth. The results helped lift the double YOG medallist into the top 50 of the Race to Dubai rankings, with the top 60 qualifying for the season-ending World Tour Championship in Dubai.