If you win a medal, whether it is gold, silver or bronze, it is priceless.
Former British heptathlete Kelly Sotherton, who won a bronze medal in the heptathlon in Athens in 2004 and another in the 4×400-meter relay in Beijing 2008, told CNN Sport that her medals are a reminder of how much her hard work and efforts have paid off.
“I would never sell my medals,” Sotherton told CNN Sport on Friday. “They mean a lot.”
Sotherton said she keeps her medals accessible rather than putting them in a frame.
“I think it’s good to put them on sometimes,” she added.
The design of the medals changes for each game, and this time around, they’re the work of Junichi Kawanishi.
Each of the gold, silver and bronze medals has a diameter of 85 millimeters and a thickness of 7.7 mm to 12.1 mm.
The gold medal is indeed pure silver plated with gold, with approximately 6 grams of gold out of a total weight of 556 grams.
The silver medal is pure silver and weighs around 550 grams, while the bronze medal weighs around 450 grams and is actually 95% copper and 5% zinc.
At today’s prices, that means gold would be worth around $ 800 if you melt it down, while silver would be worth around $ 450 and bronze around $ 5.
Earlier this month, the medal of a winner of the 1896 Athens Olympics was auctioned for $ 180,000, Cuban shooter Leuris Pupo’s gold medal at the London 2012 Olympics amounted to $ 73,200 and compatriot Iván Pedroso’s long jump gold medal in Sydney 2000 was $ 71,335. All three were sold by Boston-based RR Auction.
At the 1896 Games – the first modern Olympics – winners received silver medals and those who finished second won bronze, according to RR Auction.
This medal is considered one of the most important in Olympic history and is one of four that Owens, a black American, won in the 1936 game, spoiling the display of Aryan superiority intended by Adolf Hitler.
Olympians tend to keep the medals they’ve won, according to Richard Gladdle, of the Baldwin auction house in London, told CNN Sport on Thursday.
“They are very rarely offered for sale,” Gladdle told CNN Sport on Friday.
When they auction, it’s usually for philanthropic reasons, Gladdle added.
The only Olympic medal Baldwin’s sold was a gold medal from 1912, the last year they were made from gold.