Everyone will have their own favourite Olympics memories. As someone who remembers Sebastian Coe’s 800m world record from 1981, which stood for 16 years, watching David Rudisha of Kenya become the first man to run under 1.41 was amazing. Watching Mo Farah was breathtaking. Watching London and Londoners rejoice in the Games was heart-warming. Watching Sweden losing the handball by one goal was heartbreaking.
Everyone will have their own favourite statistics too. Below are 12 about London 2012.
Although I missed being in London for the Olympics (not least as my old room in the Foreign Office overlooked the beach volleyball arena…), a little slice of the Olympics came to the Embassy today.
Oscar, the young Brazilian mid-fielder who’s signed for Chelsea, is in Stockholm this week to play in the Sweden Brazil game on Wednesday. He came into the Embassy and brought us a signed Chelsea shirt.
I congratulated and commiserated on his silver medal on Saturday and hoped he’d win plenty of medals with Chelsea!
1. Almost 15 million people watched the Olympic Flame cross the UK.
2. In 45 minutes on 4 August Britain won three times as many gold medals as in the whole of the 1996 summer games.
3. 2 medals in Taekwondo were our first ever.
4. As was Nicola Adams’ gold in women’s boxing.
5. 7.4 million people (around 1 out of every 8 Britons) visited an Olympic venue.
6. 22.4m watched the opening ceremony in the UK alone (more than 1 in 3 of the population).
7. Every participating country team included women athletes, for the first time.
8. 80,000 people watched the women’s football final, a record for a women’s football fixture anywhere.
9. 4.5 million people used London underground on 9 August, the most ever.
10. It wasn’t just sport, spending on theatre and other tickets is reported to have doubled on a year ago.
11. 46,000 bikes were hired in London on 26 July, the highest ever daily total.
12. Over 2 million tickets are already sold for the Paralympics, starting in two weeks’ time, another record.