Australia's Olympic triathlon team performed despite, not because of, its own national federation.
The shameful farce of the selection controversy earlier this year had the potential to derail their London campaign.
Erin Densham's epic bronze medal was the highlight, with Emma Jackson's eighth placing justifying the faith selectors put in her.
Courtney Atkinson led the Australian men in 18th as London confirmed that Europe now dominates the male side of the sport at the Olympics.
The first 11 places in the men's race went to Europeans and British winner Alistair Brownlee posted an absurdly-quick 10km run split of 29 minutes and seven seconds.
But these Olympics will be remembered in Australian triathlon as much for the royally-botched selection process as the results.
Everyone thought the Games team would be settled in mid-April.
Suddenly, the date was pushed back to the end of May, causing a lot of unnecessary stress.
It made the sport look amateur.
Triathlon Australia have had a history of Olympic selection controversies, but this one took the cake.
Head coach Shaun Stephens would not discuss what went wrong, but rather focused on how well the triathletes involved handled the situation.
"It certainly has to improve, it's not acceptable," he said.
"But I still give credit to the athletes for how they dealt with it ... the athletes were outstanding."
There was also plenty of focus on Beijing gold medallist Emma Snowsill being left out of the team for Jackson, but it appears the selectors made the right call there.
While the women remain a force, the men's results highlight the work ahead for the high performance program.
When triathlon made its Olympic debut at Sydney 2000, Australia dominated men's and women's racing.
The key was a vibrant, ultra-competitive national series that attracted the world's best.
Those days are long gone.
Also, many top triathletes are growing disillusioned with Olympic racing and switch instead to the lucrative North American circuit.
Two-time Hawaiian Ironman Chris McCormack tried to switch back in an unsuccessful bid to make the Olympic team, but he is a rarity.
"Australia has fallen behind in competition series - that's what made some of our great athletes," Stephens said.
"It will take time to rebuild and we've known that for the last four years.
"We have a solid development program that started a couple of years ago, but to see the fruition of that ... I'd like to say four years, but more than likely it will be eight."
Stephens also differentiates between the men and women.
"The women, we're still exceptionally strong - we didn't win the gold medal, but clearly we're the dominant nation," he said."The guys, they've been holding the flag up for Australian men's triathlon for some time - my message to the younger guys is it's their turn, they have to step up."
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