Rhys McClenaghan is relishing the chance to participate at Paris 2024. GETTY IMAGES

Gymnastic star Rhys McClenaghan is relishing the opportunity to showcase his talents after being selected for the upcoming Olympic Games this summer in Paris. The 24-year-old will head to France for his second Olympics, carrying genuine medal hopes.

After winning gold in the Pommel Horse at the European Championships earlier this year, McClenaghan competed in the finals in Tokyo three years ago, finishing seventh with a score of 13.100 as Max Whitlock took gold. He bounced back from that disappointment to claim victory at both the 2022 and 2023 World Championships and also won silver at the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham.

“It’s a huge honour to be selected for my second Olympics Games,” he said. “It is the biggest show in the world, and I am looking forward to going out and performing to my best. 

"My routine is both challenging and ambitious, which is what it needs to be in order to compete at this level.” McClenaghan is expected to take centre stage when the Pommel Horse gets underway at the Bercy Arena on 27 July and 3 August.

The Newtonards man trains at Origin Gymnastics, established by head coach Luke Carson, in his hometown of Antrim. The duo aims to maintain their successful collaboration this summer.

Gymnast Rhys McClenaghan is looking to come up trumps for Team Ireland at Paris 2024. GETTY IMAGES
Gymnast Rhys McClenaghan is looking to come up trumps for Team Ireland at Paris 2024. GETTY IMAGES

“The road to Rhys and Luke’s second Olympics is paved with passion and perseverance showing a great partnership between coach and gymnast,” said Sally Johnson, Gymnastics High Performance Director.

“Their hard work is a testament to their unwavering commitment to excellence, showcasing exceptional collaboration! We look forward to the Games and to Rhys performing his World Class Routine on Pommel as part of the Team Ireland Olympic Team. Thank you to all the support team who are involved in supporting Rhys!”

Gavin Noble, Olympic Federation of Ireland Chef de Mission for Paris 2024, echoed Johnson's sentiment, saying, “Rhys is an exciting athlete, and always a great addition to a team. We are delighted to officially select him to Team Ireland for the Paris Olympics.

"It takes a huge amount of dedication and training to compete at this level, and it is even more impressive for Rhys to be going into the Games as reigning World and European Champion, we wish him the best of luck.”