Our Olympic hero: Max talks to the Gazette about his whirlwind London 2012 experience

North Grenwich Arena ,UK,05/08/12 Picture by Jamie McPhilimey. London 2012 Olympic Games. Max Whitlock (GBR) competes in the Mens Pommel Horse Final

North Grenwich Arena ,UK,05/08/12 Picture by Jamie McPhilimey. London 2012 Olympic Games. Max Whitlock (GBR) competes in the Mens Pommel Horse Final

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Not content with just the one Olympic medal, Hemel’s Max Whitlock added another bronze to his collection after an incredible display in the pommel horse final.

After claiming third place as part of the men’s artistic gymnastics team last week, the 19-year-old from Adeyfield wowed the judges once more with a near-faultless routine to land his second bronze medal of the Games.

After qualifying in eighth place for the pommel horse final, Max produced a controlled and confident display to briefly head the rankings of the eight finalists.

But after setting the standard he could only sit and watch as the favourites, Hungarian Krisztian Berki and GB team mate Louis Smith, showed what they could do.

Smith, performing last, produced a score to match Berki but could only claim the silver once judges took the difficulty of their routines into account.

“It definitely hasn’t sunk in yet,” said a delighted Max. “Like I said after my first medal, I don’t think it will sink in for a long time!

“Coming into the Olympics, I just wanted to make an individual final, so to come away with two bronze medals is incredible.

“I was hoping to put in a clean routine in the final, and I was so happy to deliver the performance I did.

“Then I just chilled out and was lucky enough to watch the two best pommel horse gymnasts in the world competing right in front of me.

“I’ve learned a lot from Louis (Smith) – he’s had that experience for four years and it was really helpful to have him around.”

The Games has been a whirlwind experience for the teenager, and he said: “I don’t think I can put into words how it feels right now.

“To stand up there on the podium and have a medal in your hands and have the national anthem playing is just incredible.

“The support we have all had is unbelievable and we really can’t explain just how much that means to us.”

Max now has the world at his feet, but says he is just enjoying the moment before getting back to business in the gym.

He said: “We’ve got a few days in the Olympic Village to chill out and watch some events, then I’m looking forward to coming home and showing people my medals!

“I’ll probably go on holiday to relax, then after my break, I’ll get back into gym and training, and I’ll start trying out some new moves.”