So much hype, so much expectation - such is the nature of sport. It wasn't the gold medal the people of Mansfield were whispering about but Rebecca's home fans are still brimming with pride.
Adlington is Mansfield's favourite daughter and there is no doubt that it's people were celebrating her bronze medals in their homes, as they were at the Adlington Arms pub, as they were at the Rebecca Adlington Swimming Centre.
Ahead of Friday night's 800m final I admired the 'Inspire a generation' and 'Learn to swim like Rebecca Adlington' posters walled around the swimming centre and there was no doubt that Rebecca had already set her legacy, irrespective of the result.
"Since Rebecca's done so well it's made our centre rise from the ashes like a phoenix," said aqua-aerobics and swimming coach Wendy.
"She's had an amazing impact on local swimming, everyone wants to come to lessons now, put their head down and make the squad.
"I used to take Rebecca's class occasionally, you can always spot them coming through and she had the motivation to carry on," added the Adlington Centre teacher.
Rebecca even has a pub in her own name, and bar manager Dan told me the story behind the 'Adlington Arms'.
"We did it 4 years ago when she won the two golds and everyone loved it so we thought we'll do it again. She's from a school literally down the street so we like to show support for Rebecca," said Dan.
"The pub gets busy when she's on, she gets a lot of support in Mansfield... She's brought a lot of people together, that's what the Olympics is about," he added.
Linda Bennett was Rebecca's first swimming teacher at the age of five. After Adlington's second bronze on Friday night, Linda said: "It was another gutsy swim from Rebecca. We'd be lying if we said we didn't want her to win gold and I'm sure Rebecca wanted to win gold.
"But she's already proved that she's world class and to win two bronze medals and to be third best in the world and the best in Britain, well that's enough for us. We are very proud of her and she's an inspiration to the younger generation."
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