Aly Raisman was the picture of joy as she performed her floor exercise routine on Tuesday in London, twisting and tumbling to the familiar tune of "Hava Nagila" as the London crowd clapped along in time.
When it was over, she had plenty to celebrate as well.
Raisman scored gold on her floor exercise Tuesday at the North Greenwich Arena, besting Catalina Ponor of Romania at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London. It was her second gold medal of these Summer Olympics—joining the team gold she won with the US last week—and her second medal of the day, after she captured the bronze medal in the balance beam competition.
Performing a difficult floor routine with a 6.5 star value, Raisman delivered an effort filled with clean landings and near-flawless execution. The judges saw it just that way, and gave Raisman a 9.1 score for a total of 15.6. That gave her the gold by a relatively large margin over Ponor, who had already been beaten out by the Massachusetts native once on Tuesday.
Earlier in the day Raisman had attempted a routine with a 6.2 difficulty rating and scored 8.766 on the balance beam. That initially landed Raisman behind Ponor, but an inquiry was submitted and accepted, with an extra .1 being added to Raisman's difficulty rating. This development created a third-place tie between Raisman and Ponor, and while Raisman had a bad history with tiebreakers after the all-around competition, her 8.766 execution score topped Ponor's 8.466, breaking the tie and giving the American the medal in an event where Raisman's US teammate, all-around gold medalist Gabby Douglas, made news when she slipped on the beam, eventually finishing seventh.
China captured both gold and silver on the beam, with Deng LinLin and Sui Lu finishing in the top two places, but Raisman's performance capped off an outstanding run for US gymnasts in 2012.
J-Connection: Aly Raisman is Jewish.