World Stamps

It was supposed to be ‘instant,’ so why is this Olympian getting a stamp four years late?

Jun 25, 2016, 9 AM
Due to the disqualification of Russian race walker Sergey Kirdyapkin, Jared Tallent of Australia was presented a gold medal June 16 for the 50-kilometer event at the 2012 London Games. Australia issued a stamp the next day, June 17.

By Denise McCarty

Since the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games, Australia Post has issued what it calls “instant” stamps honoring Australian gold medalists. 

These instant stamps are printed and made available the day after the Olympic win.

However, the latest Gold Medal stamp was issued June 17, almost four years after race walker Jared Tallent crossed the finish line.

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Australia Post explained the delay, “History was rewritten when earlier this year it was announced that the three-time Olympic medallist from Ballarat would be awarded gold for his 50km walk in the London 2012 Olympic Games following the disqualification of Russian, Sergey Kirdyapkin.”

The $1 stamp shows Tallent holding his gold medal, which he received June 16 during a ceremony in Melbourne. The stamp was produced in a pane of 10, as were Australia’s other instant Gold Medalists stamps for the 2012 London Games (Scott 3745-3751).

Tallent said, “I can now celebrate a moment that every athlete dreams of and I look forward to sharing the experience with my family, including wife Claire, my Mum, Dad and siblings.”

Australia Post will continue its instant-stamp tradition at the Rio 2016 Olympics Aug. 5-21 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Each Australian gold medal performance will be commemorated on a stamp issued in a pane of 10.

Find Australia’s online shop here. The mailing address is Philatelic Mail Order Bureau, Reply Paid 86359, George Street, Queensland 4003, Australia; and the new-issue agent in the United States is Australia Stamp Agency in North America, 1 Unicover Center, Cheyenne, WY 82001-0001.

We have more Olympics-related posts:

Latest batch of commemorative stamps for the Rio 2016 Olympics released

Special Olympics stamp marks upcoming Los Angeles Games

Olympian to speak on stamps and sports at World Stamp Show-NY 2016