Olympian Kyle Snyder expects replacement gold medal next month
COLUMBUS -- Kyle Snyder is headed back to the World Championships in August. It appears he'll have a new gold medal in his possession by then.
The Buckeye senior to be made history at the Rio Olympics by becoming the youngest American wrestler to win a gold medal.
The medal will soon be history as well, to be replaced by the IOC and Rio organizers because of damage.
Snyder told ABC-6 he sent the damaged medal back to the IOC nearly 10 days ago and should have a replacement in about three weeks.
Snyder, a Woodbine Maryland native, and Helen Maroulis, a U.S. gold medalist wrestler from Rockville, are among a group of more than 100 athletes from around the world with defective Olympic medals.
Beach volleyball star Kerri Walsh Jennings says her bronze medal from last summer is flaking and rusting, and USA Swimming spokesman Scott Leightman said some swimmers have damaged medals as well.
Kyle Snyder, a Woodbine native, won the Gold Medal at the 2016 Rio Olympics becaming the youngest Olympic gold medalist in United States wrestling history at 20 years old. He has won two NCAA Championships.
Rio Games spokesman Mario Andrada said Friday that officials have noted problems with the covering on 6 to 7 percent of the medals.
"The most common issue is that they were dropped or mishandled, and the varnish has come off and they've rusted or gone black in the spot where they were damaged," Andrada said.
Snyder, who wrestles for Ohio State, was 20 when he won his medal. He noticed an issue with his medal the day after he won it.
He went to a party at the Team USA house in Rio, where he said multiple people handled the medal as they celebrated. Snyder said he later discovered a scratch on the back of it, though he added there has been no further damage.
"It wasn't too big of a deal," Snyder said. "But since they're giving me a new one, it's kind of cool."
Rio de Janeiro spent about $12 billion to organize the games, which were plagued by cost-cutting, poor attendance and reports of bribes and corruption linked to the building of some Olympic-related facilities.