Friday, 14 September 2012

Golden Summer

Well, sadly the great summer of sport has finally come to an end and I for one am finding it difficult to get back to normal. The Olympics were great and I especially enjoyed watching the successes of Mo Farah, Jessica Ennis and Usain Bolt. However, for me it was the Paralympic Games that really thrilled and excited me. I was disappointed not to have made to the start line myself but as they say, one door closes and another opens. You know, Paralympians have an X Factor that the Olympic athletes can't even imagine - the X Factor that makes you go the extra mile. Athletes with a disability strongly affirm that its not what has been taken away from them that counts, its what you can achieve with what you have left that makes the difference. I marvelled at swimmers who had lost limbs flying through the water, and at the ferocity of wheelchair rugby. Those people are TOUGH! And who in the Olympics could match the incredible achievements of David Weir, winning FOUR Gold medals in the 800, 1500, 5,000, and the marathon, all in the space of less than a week! Absolutely incredible, and a fantastic role model for young people everywhere.

I enjoyed going into the Paralympic Village every day and meeting up with old friends from around the world, and enjoying some fantastic food. I also enjoyed watching the Games in the stadium, and thanks to my friends from Congo I had full access to the V.I.P lounge, which made me feel very special.

I also had the great privilege to be part of the team at ITV London, and had my chance to comment on the talking points of the day live on television. The view from the studio was magnificent and it was exciting to see the vast crowds of people flocking into the venues each day. I really enjoyed the experience.

Watching Dedaline race in the 100m was an emotional experience for me, and even though she finished last she achieved a lot for the millions of other disabled women in Africa who can aspire to being Paralympians themselves. Mind you, there is an awful lot to do to get more people from developing countries involved in sport because a lot of the equipment needed is so expensive, not to mention the cost of transport and training facilities. Anyway, I think London 2012 has set a very high standard and I really hope Brazil can continue the progress we have made.

The Closing Ceremony was magical and I really enjoyed it, though I did have to leave early because it was so noisy, maybe a sign my raving days are almost over! The Gamesmakers were absolutely incredible. I must personally thank David Prophet, the very patient man who drove me to the Paralympic site each day and brought me back at night. He deserves a Gold medal for all the time, effort, and enthusiasm he put in voluntarily. Thank you David.

Thank you also to the IPC for my certificate and silver medal marking my participation in London 2012.

Labels: , , , , , , , , , ,


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home