Five of the Ivy League’s 48 athletes at the 2012 London Games won medals at the 2008 Beijing Games including Caryn Davies (Harvard ’05), Susan Francia (Penn ’04), Caroline Lind (Princeton ’06), Malcolm Howard (Harvard ’05) and James Williams (Columbia ’07).
Davies, Francia and Lind all captured Gold in 2008 as part of the United States’ women’s eight boat. The trio – as well as Ivy additions Esther Lofgren (Harvard ’09) and Taylor Ritzel (Yale ’10) – will have a chance to repeat on Thursday, August 2 when they take part in the A Final. The American women’s eight boat qualified for the A Final when it finished first in Heat 1 with a time of 6:14.68.
Howard took home a Gold from Beijing as part of Canada’s men’s eight boat. Howard and the Canadians finished second in the repechage in a time of 5:27.41 to book their place in the A Final, which will be run on Wednesday, Aug. 1.
Williams was a member of the Team USA sabre squad that finished with a Silver in Beijing. On Friday, August 3, Williams and his U.S. sabre teammates Daryl Homer and Tim Morehouse return to the strips in search of a medal. The Americans will open the knockout-style tournament with a match versus Russia.
The last Ivy athletes to earn back-to-back Olympic medals were Harvard’s Davies and Yale’s Sada Jacobson. Davies won Silver with the U.S. women’s eights at the 2004 Athens Games in addition to Beijing. Jacobson (Yale ’05) took home a Bronze in individual women’s sabre from Athens and followed with an individual women’s sabre silver and a team bronze in Beijing. The last Ivy athlete to win Gold in back-to-back Olympics was David Berkoff (Harvard ’89) who was part of the U.S. 400 medley relay teams that finished first at the 1988 Seoul and 1992 Barcelona Games.