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Published: September 3rd 2012
Mo-ing for gold!
Mo Farah crosses the line to claim his second gold medal, what a Mo-ment!
As mentioned in my last blog, I was very lucky indeed and was offered a ticket to the last athletics session of the glorious 2012 London Olympics, so here are some photos, I’ve tried to keep the number down, but I did take rather a lot. I must say a big thank you to Catherine Bear for offering me the ticket, so lucky!
So the day finally arrived and I was up early and very excitable, meeting the fellow Olympians at London Bridge station we headed on over to West Ham to try and avoid the crowds at Stratford. We arrived lunchtime to spend the day in the park before our athletics session in the evening and boy what an evening to have tickets for!
It seems the Gods were smiling down from Mount Olympus itself as the sun was shining bright in the sky, there were no queues and all the tubes were working, the omens were good and I didn't even have to consult any animal entrails to know we were going to see something special that evening.
Once we sailed through security into the park, we took a first look at the park and the
The world record moment as Usain Bolt and the Jamaicans get their world record in the 4x100m final
stadium. Having been to the park in Beijing, I'd still have to say their stadium was a bit more interesting, but the park itself was much nicer in London with all the wild flowers they planted. Naturally a bit of shopping was on the agenda and our first port of call was to one of the huge shops in the park. I couldn't resist a flag to add to my collection so walked out with a very large Team GB flag which I proceeded to wear all day around my shoulders, I had no shame! Luckily we shopped early on as by late afternoon people were queuing to get in to them and they are the size of a small supermarket, I can't imagine there was much left to buy.
The atmosphere was amazing strolling around the park, the 'Park Life' screen was surrounded by people soaking up the atmosphere in the glorious sunshine, there was hardly a green patch left. We had some lunch over by my favourite building (no, not MacDonalds), the Velodrome, it looks very pretty on the outside but smaller than I thought it was going to be. Sadly we couldn't get close to the
The Orbit thingy..
No, I don't get it either, looks nice at night though.
BMX track, that was so much fun to watch the day before, I would have loved to had a go on on it, but at a more leisurely pace I'm sure.
After lunch we awarded ourselves some gold medals, of the chocolate variety of course and in my Team GB t-shirt and flag, I was pretty much wearing the same as everyone else in the park.
As early evening approached we had a spot of dinner (not MacDonalds) and then made our way to our seats in the stadium, it was SOOO EXCITING!!!
Although we were pretty much at the top of the stadium in the £50 tickets, the view was surprisingly good and we were seated not too far from the flame and opposite the finish line. As usual I took far to many photos, especially as I was wielding two cameras having borrowed a fancy SLR off a friend, I wasn't chancing missing any of the action!
Finally the athletics began, the line up for the evening included some javelin and high jump on the field but the main attractions were Mo Farah in the 5000m final and Usian Bolt et al in the 100m
The fashion in London this year
If it ain't red, white or blue, it ain't worth wearing
relay, we couldn't really asked for much more.
The field events started first and seemed to go on for a long time, they would get lots of cheers, then another race would start, so people would then ignore them and watch the race. There was a lot going on all at once, it was quite strange in a way, hard to know where to look sometimes.
However, suddenly a roar from the crowd, I looked over and realised it was Mo Farah coming in to the stadium for the 5000m final. I'd heard all the talk on the TV about the crowds and how it encouraged the athletes to do better, but not until I was actually in the stadium did I truly understand what people were on about, it was immense, I almost felt sorry for the other athletes, almost.
Even as the race started, the crowd was on their feet cheering, one commentator described it as a 'Mexican wave of sound' going around the stadium as Mo ran, I really can't think of a better description myself as it was just like that. The sound followed Mo around the stadium getting louder and louder with
Just a few people in the park
With the basketball cube in the background it give you a sense of how busy the park was
each lap. At first I was thinking how slow they all seemed to go but they got a bit faster each time they went round the track and then by the last couple of laps, I would have needed a car to keep up with them. The final lap was amazing, the noise in the stadium was deafening, like standing by a jet engine, watching it on TV just doesn't come close to how it is in real life, I have never heard anything like it, I now understand why the athletes kept going on about the crowd pushing them on. The sounds waves alone were probably pushing them forward. As Mo crossed the line it was amazing to be there, I waved my flag frantically, what a rush!
As the laps of honour were completed and the crowd calmed down a bit, some other races and medal ceremonies took place, it was quite fun to hear some of the more obscure national anthems on offer, I was looking forward to Mo's but they made us wait until the end for that, but it was worth the wait.
The next big race of the evening was the 4x100m men's
Green and pleasent lands
The wild flowers in the park, very pretty
relay final, the Jamaicans being the favourites and of course a chance to see the legendary Usian Bolt in action. Luckily there was a bit of build up before the race started as it was over so quickly, they really go at quite a pace dontcha know!
Bolt was running the last leg and as he crossed the line the crowd erupted again and were delighted to see they had also got a world record to go with their gold, it was great to see them get that and nice that there was also a great atmosphere for non-Team GB athletes as well.
All in all, a fantastic day and I was so lucky to have been there, well done London, we truly held a most agreeable Olympic games!
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