So bigger isn’t always best, good things come from small packages. No, I haven’t gone into euphemism overload on this warm Sunday evening. This relates to the medal table so far at the Rio Olympics. I am an Olympophile and I am not afraid to say it! Born in 1972, I have vague recollections of the enigmatic Nadia Comaneci in ‘76, watching Coe and Ovett in ‘80, but it was the Los Angeles games of 1984 that caught the attention of the young me. Scrapbook made, adoration of Daley Thompson, Kathy Cook and Peter Elliott. I was hooked. Plucky Great Britain fighting amongst the big guns. Little old us, we may get something. It was the athletics that grabbed my attention; the glory events. Over time, elation in rowing with Sir Steve, swimming and gymnastic success, cycling domination have matched and often surpassed our achievements in track and field.
Fast forward to London 2012 and something was in the air; it was a truly amazing games, creating a plethora of memories for the participants and the audience. Of course a huge amount of money was thrown at sport in order for us to succeed in London; it paid off. With the papers talking about cuts to sports post 2012 there was rightly an expectation that things would tail off…and to some extent they did. There is however, something magical about the Olympics. It inspires, it ignites and excites. It is the pinnacle of a career. We have been spoilt with the multiple titles from so many athletes. And now, the new age has come of age.
To see my little ole country now second in the medal table (at the time of writing) is immense. The pool of talent that we can take from in no way matches the powerhouses of USA, Russia, China et al, yet we have something – something you cannot bottle and hopefully something not taken from one either. Each and every athlete have dedicated their lives to their cause. It is humbling to listen to their stories. It is simply fantastic.
Proud to be a Brit!
Dream BIG, Sparkle MORE, Shine BRIGHTLY