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Monday, September 10, 2012
What a summer it has been.
1 - The final Saturday of the Olympics. After a few quiet days in the Stadium it all felt a bit flat. What Britain needed was another Mo Farah victory and a world record from Usain Bolt. We got both, in the 5,000m and the 4x100 relay final. And then to cap it all off the pair, for me the icons of the Games, swapped trademark poses on the podium. It could not have been scripted any better.
2 - The arrival of The Queen to get the opening ceremony underway. The whole ceremony was immense but this just blew people away. In those opening hours of Danny Boyle’s masterpiece all of the worries about the Games being a disaster faded away.
3 - Jessica Ennis wins gold. What pressure she must have been under. The so-called poster girl of the Games it would have been easy for her to wilt under all that expectation. But we all know she didn’t, dominating the event from the moment it began. Her final 800m win, in which she cruised past her rivals on the final straight, sent the crowd into a frenzy on an amazing Super Saturday.
4 - Victoria Pendleton’s final race. Proof that in sport it’s not all written in the stars. A final race-off between Pendleton and her rival Anna Meares would have been a fitting end to an amazing career, but it wasn’t to be after the British rider was stripped of her opening win. Nevertheless for Pendleton this was a Games to be proud of.
5 - Norfolk’s very own Jody Cundy losing it after being disqualified in his Paralympic 1km time trial. As Cundy ranted and raged at anyone who dared to listen you couldn’t help but love him more for it. If ever you needed evidence of how much these Games mattered to those involved this was it.
In the last few months we have enjoyed twists and turns, triumph and heartache, constant drama and so many stories of triumph against adversity.
But now it’s all over and all we have left are memories and one last day of celebration.
Britain’s many sporting heroes will be saluted today as a huge precession snakes its way through the streets of London.
Starting at 1.30pm athletes will travel on 21 open-top floats, grouped in alphabetical order by their sport.
The stars of the Olympics’ Super Saturday will be on the first three floats.
The first will include Mo Farah, the Olympic 5,000 and 10,000m winner, followed by heptathlon gold medallist Jessica Ennis, with long jump champion Greg Rutherford in the third float.
Team GB’s cycling stars Sir Chris Hoy, Jason Kenny, Laura Trott and Victoria Pendleton will be in float seven, followed by double equestrian gold-medal winner Charlotte Dujardin, rowing champion Katherine Grainger, Ben Ainslie, Britain’s most successful Olympic sailor, and triathlon gold medallist Alistair Brownlee.
Paralympians Hannah Cockcroft, Jody Cundy, Sophie Christiansen and Jonnie Peacock will also take part in the parade.
British Airways will lead a flypast with the Red Arrows during the event after receiving special permission to fly over The Mall.
The flame-coloured Firefly A319 aircraft, which was used to bring the Olympic Flame to the UK at the start of the Games, will display a special “thank you” message on its underbelly.
CLICK ON THE LINK IN THE TOP RIGHT HAND SIDE OF THE PAGE TO ...
- Follow live coverage of the celebrations on our live blog.
- Our Olympic writers will also be present to discuss the event, its highs and lows and where we go from here.
We want to know what was your defining moment of London 2012? Leave your comments below or tweet @david_powles