Tokyo Olympics: Gold medallist who nearly missed race thanks woman who paid for taxi

A PA picture of 110m Hurdler champion Hansle Parchment holding his gold medal.
110m Hurdler champion Hansel Parchment. Credit: PA Images

A Jamaican Olympic Champion who got lost on his way to the Tokyo Olympic race track after taking the wrong bus has tracked down the woman who helped him get there and win gold.

In a video posted to social media, 110m hurdle champion Hansle Parchment described the moment he realised he was lost and, how he ended up meeting the Tokyo 2020 volunteer that helped him.

He said: "I accidentally went on the wrong bus to the wrong venue.

"I had music in my ears, and I wasn't hearing anything that the people loading the bus were saying.

"I saw the sign at the top of the bus stand saying 'athletics track' without even thinking about it. By the time I looked up, I realised that the bus was going the wrong way."

Parchment ended up at the wrong Olympics venue which he described as "aquatic", and was advised that he would have to return to the Olympic village and take another bus to the stadium.

He believes that if he had followed this advice, he would not have gotten to the track in time to warm-up.

Hansle Parchment racing in the 110m Hurdle final Credit: PA

In the video, Parchment went on to say: "I was trying to get one of the branded cars for the games to take me but these people are very strict and adhere to the rules. I would have had to book the car from beforehand."

He then saw the volunteer, who he now knows as Tiana, and approached her.

"I had to beg, because of course, she's not allowed to do much.

"She actually gave me some money to take one of the taxis that are affiliated with the games, and that's how I was able to get to the warm up track at the stadium, with enough time to warm up and compete," he said.

In the video, Parchment tracked down Tiana and showed her his gold medal, letting her know that she was "instrumental" in him "getting to the final that day."

He also gave her a branded shirt and the money that she had given him to pay for the taxi.

(L-R) Silver medallist Grant Holloway, Gold medallist Hansle Parchment and bronze medallist Ronald Levy Credit: PA

Edmund Bartlett, Jamaica's Minister for tourism has also reportedly said that Tiana is invited to come to Jamaica.

Speaking to a Jamaican media outlet called The Sunday Gleaner, he said: "It is selfless what she did - one would not know what the outcome would have been. No matter where in the world she is, we want to reciprocate the kindness shown to one of our own."