After Friday’s spectacular opening ceremony the attention finally focused on the sport on Saturday. As I write we are halfway through day 4, and without wishing to spoil the feel-good atmosphere dominating the country right now, it has not been a particularly great start for Team GB. No gold medals so far, and only 4 medals of any colour to show for our efforts. But there is still a long way to go!
Cycling was expected to be one of Team GB’s strong suits, and although Lizzie Armitstead delivered a silver medal in the women’s road race, it was Mark Cavendish who was expected to kick-start the gold rush for Great Britain on day one. Sadly, he and the rest of the Great Britain team faltered, finding themselves the wrong side of a large breakaway group after the climb of Box Hill, and Cavendish finished 29th with Alexandre Vinokourov of Kazakhstan taking gold. Much more will be expected in the men’s individual time-trial, where Tour de France winner Bradley Wiggins starts as one of the favourites, and on the track in the velodrome where Great Britain did so well in Beijing.
…could not bring home a medal,
Swimming too has been disappointing. Rebecca Adlington’s bronze in the 400m freestyle aside, Great Britain have failed to set the pool alight as USA and China have dominated proceedings so far. Also in the aquatics centre, after all the pre-games hype Tom Daley and Peter Waterfield could not bring home a medal, finishing just outside in 4th place. Let’s hope Rebecca can retain her gold medal in the 800m freestyle on Friday to give the many enthusiastic aquatics centre spectators something to cheer.
Perhaps the most unexpected Great Britain medal has come in the male gymnastics team competition. Not recognised as one of Great Britain’s strongest events, the male gymnastics team sprang a huge surprise, winning a bronze medal and doing wonders for interest in this most elegant of sports.
…delivered a silver medal…
Eventing was always going to be an event to watch due to the Queen’s granddaughter, Zara Phillips, being part of the team. And the team delivered a silver medal to the delight of the Royal family and the British supporters.
Despite the slow start to our home Olympics, Team GB has much to look forward to. The rowers look in great form, and velodrome cycling should be a chance for some gold medals at last. But let’s continue to enjoy the multitude of sports on offer in our capital city and across the country, and perhaps by the time you’re reading this article, we will have a gold medal to celebrate!