Sightseeing and Silver to Scott Reardon

Finally had the chance to see a little of London this morning, as I didn’t have to start until 3:30pm.  I headed into Embankment and had a traditional English breakfast, with a nice park on one side and the Thames on the other.

Then it was up to the London Eye for a bird’s eye view of London – Oh Melbourne readers this is how you make a massive Ferris wheel tourist attraction!!! 

I had to drop back to the village, to pick up my Basketball stadium accreditation for tonight’s late shift.  While I was there, I ran into Brett Jones (Carlee Beattie’s coach) and got the lowdown on why she had to miss her final.  She’d had a really unfortunate lead up to the games with all sorts of niggling injuries, culminating in a groin strain that prevented her from making the 100m Final line up – an obvious disappointment as she was a good podium chance.  Whilst I understand Carlee may not agree, at the moment, I believe getting silver in the long jump is outstanding and something she should be really proud of.  It isn’t always possible for everything to come together perfectly on one night after 4 years of training.  When things don’t go your way and you still walk away with a silver medal, shows me what a supreme athlete you are.  Top job Carls.

After lots of walking, all over the athletes’ village, I found out that I needed to catch the tube to get the Stadium.   Arrived to find that the repair centre was more like a “bunker” 3×4 metres on the edge of the stadium full of tools and welding gear!  Luckily I came prepared with a ticket for tonight’s woman’s gold medal match between Germany and Australia.

Had to do a welding repair on a Spanish comp chair that had been smashed in the previous game; (Actually, Klaus Peter did – I am not here for my welding skills).  A volunteer needed some adjustments to his chair – he was also riding around with one bald tyre and one new tyre, because he couldn’t afford a new one.  I told him if he came back on the last day, the kind Otto Bock technician would be able to sort him out with a new one – poor bugger.

The Netherlands and the USA played for bronze, with the Netherlands running away with a convincing victory.  With the Aussie girls arriving in the stadium, I got the flag out again and cheered them all on, whenever I ran into them in the corridors behind the stadium – they all looked focused and pumped.  Even got to cheer them onto the court.

Changed the TV channel  in the Athletes Lounge from the basketball to the Athleticss track to watch Scotty run the 100m – However the spanners on Channel 4 were too busy showing ads or talking to show the race live – I was really P#$%*# off.

Eventually I was able to get onto the computer in the lounge to find out that he had just been pipped by 0.03sec to silver by the German, Heinrich Popow.  What an awesome achievement, from an awesome athlete.  He ran a PB of 12.43s on an Australian modified knee and self made adapter.  By all counts the knee is slower but Scotty has trained harder and better (even Heinrich told me this himself, in the food hall yesterday.)

Another awesome athlete doing Australia and APC Prosthetics proud.

If like me you missed it live here is the link to the race http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tHiOuTwzMDE

Jack Swift also ran his 400m tonight, in the extremely tough T44 field with 4 bilateral amputees qualifying.  Jack ran a swift time of 55.94s, which was 1 second outside qualifying in a final that has the 4 bilaterals fighting it out tomorrow night.

The Aussie Gliders played a great game of basketball and were crowd favourites, but they couldn’t quite match the accuracy of the Germans who went a whole quarter at 100% accuracy.   Two German triumphs tonight, at the expense of some Aussie legends.

Getting home at nearly 1am, I opted out of going to, what will surely be a huge party put on by Hans George.