Athlete at the centre of Australia’s biggest Olympics scandal sends two very telling messages after being nicknamed ‘Lay Down Sally’ for giving up during race

  • Sally Robbins stopped rowing in women’s eight final at 2004 Olympics
  • At the time dubbed ‘Lay Down Sally’ after letting down her teammates
  • Now 20 years on, Robbins has made two head-turning statements

Polarising Australian Olympian Sally Robbins has taken to social media to declare she is finally at peace with her past after becoming a household name for all the wrong reasons.

Robbins, 42, attracted global headlines at the 2004 Games in Athens after she stopped rowing in the women’s eight final.

It ensured the shell-shocked Aussies returned home without a medal – and Robbins became an instant sporting villain. 

At the time, Robbins claimed sheer exhaustion caused her to stop rowing 600 metres from the finishing line.

‘Suddenly fatigue set in and I just couldn’t move,’ she said. ‘It is a feeling of paralysis where you just hit the wall.’

Many of her teammates were furious, as the Aussies were widely considered a gold medal chance before finishing a distant last due to her breakdown. 

Fast forward 20 years and Robbins has completely moved on from the saga, judging by two illuminating social media messages. 

‘I am at peace with my past and excited for my future,’ Robbins posted on Instagram last month. 

Polarising Australian Olympian Sally Robbins (pictured, right at the 2004 Olympics in Athens) has taken to social media to declare she is at peace with her infamous sporting past

The former women's eights rower is now a holistic health coach and yoga teacher in Perth (pictured in her studio)

The former women’s eights rower is now a holistic health coach and yoga teacher in Perth (pictured in her studio)

Last month on Instagram, Robbins declared she was 'at peace with my past and excited for my future' (pictured)

Last month on Instagram, Robbins declared she was ‘at peace with my past and excited for my future’ (pictured)

Robbins also shared her reaction to a message she received as a former Olympian ahead of the Paris Games this month

Robbins also shared her reaction to a message she received as a former Olympian ahead of the Paris Games this month

She also posted ‘Happy Olympic Day’ on June 23, in which the Perth based holistic health coach and yoga teacher expanded on her previous existence as an Olympian.

The message to Australian athletes concluded: ‘once an Olympian, always an Olympian.’

‘Having this message arrive on my phone every year always brings a tear to my eye,’ Robbins posted.

‘I am so proud to be an Olympian and wish our next Olympians at Paris the very best.

‘We are all behind you and know how much hard work you have put in to get to this point. I am ever so grateful for the support I received from near and far. 

Let’s get behind our athletes this year … send them a message – they will receive them and it makes a huge difference.’

Robbins – who now goes by Sally Cameron after taking her husband’s surname – previously ran a yoga studio just north-east of Brisbane’s city centre.

The couple also have a daughter, Aria.

After failing to qualify for rowing at the Beijing Olympics in 2008, Robbins switched sports and tried her luck at competitive cycling.

She competed in the National Women’s Road series in Western Australia and the Australian Institute of Sport as a domestique and time-triallist before deciding to retire from competitive sport altogether.

The Paris Olympics run from July 26 to August 11. 



***
Read more at DailyMail.co.uk