Saturday, 8 September 2012

London 2012 Paralympics!

Having completely failed to get any Olympic tickets, I thought I was going to be disappointed with Paralympic tickets as well, as everyone got swept up in the amazing London 2012 fever and snapped up more tickets than have ever been sold for a Paralympics. I'll admit, to begin with I wanted a ticket as an opportunity to visit the Olympic Park and see the stadium, but as the Paralympics began I became more and more excited about the idea of seeing the events themselves, especially the athletics.

And eventually, thanks to some amazing people at my fabulous running club, I got to go to the stadium not once but twice! I took far too many photos to put into one post, so I've made this collage thing which I hope will give a bit of an idea of the brilliant time I had!
First, last Sunday, we wandered around the park for a bit (it's lovely, with wildflower meadows and incredible buildings and fantastic Games Maker volunteers) and then we saw an incredible night of athletics, including seeing the Duchess of Cambridge present British Paralympian Aled Davies with his discus gold medal and then watching the T44 200m final where Oscar Pistorius was beaten by Alan Oliveira. The atmosphere inside the stadium was totally electric all night, but after Pistorius's defeat there was just a stunned silence. Thankfully along came David Weir to win a stunning gold for Paralympics GB in the T54 5000m! I'd never heard noise like it in a stadium!

And if that wasn't enough, I then nabbed a spare ticket for Thursday's session. Hannah Cockroft won gold, Dan Greaves bagged a silver in the F44 discus, we saw a couple of other GB bronze medals...and then it was time for the big one. The T44 100m final. Pistorius, Oliveira, GB's Jonnie Peacock and a whole host of top athletes. And Jonnie Peacock pulled off an incredible run to take the gold! I thought the noise on Sunday was deafening but it was nothing compared to that moment...and then everyone went completely ape just moments later as David Weir won the 800m! If there had been a roof on the Olympic Stadium, it would have come off. We were also lucky enough to see Peacock and Weir collecting their gold medals!

I feel so fortunate to have been able to see two incredible nights of athletics, and I'm so glad I got to see the Olympic Park and the stadium in use. I can't believe the whole thing will be over tomorrow night - what are we going to do with ourselves? People were cynical before the Olympics but I'm so happy that everyone seems to have got right behind it - and behind our Olympic and Paralympic athletes. I hope London can carry on the Olympic feeling far into the future!

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