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London 2012 Olympics - The BS stops when the flag drops...

by Mark Chisnell on 25 Jul 2012
Ben Ainslie Britain’’s favourite sailor Lloyd Images © http://lloydimagesgallery.photoshelter.com/
It's been four years since the last Olympic Games, and it's just a handful of days till the next - there's not much talking left to be done and the old saying has never been truer - all the BS will have to stop when that start gun fires. So it doesn't matter whether you're an athlete, a race official, a journalist, in charge of security or a bus driver, there's a limited amount of preparation time left and you really need to focus on finding and doing the priorities left on the job list.

In the case of the bloke in charge of security, that appears to be borrowing thousands of soldiers to make up for the shortfall in the people they hired. In the case of the bus driver it's making sure you know where you are going. And it seems that in the case of the journalist, it's wringing every last column inch out of every possible Olympic-story-connection.



I wasn't around in 1948 when the Games were last in London, so having them on home territory is a new experience. It allows you to see the fine grain of the media coverage, the stories that normally don't make it past the home country's border - or at least, didn't before the internet.



I guess these days everyone can read the news about the Olympic Park and Ride at Weymouth getting flooded or the Aussie 470 girls losing their sails at Heathrow.



Fortunately, not all the media coverage is so flippant - there's a cracking run-down on the Finn competition on the International Finn Association website by Robert Deaves.

And I'm sure I'm not the only one who can't wait to have some racing to write about.



My job for the Games will be hosting the live blog on the ISAF Olympic Website, and writing up my daily thoughts on the competition for Sail-World.com.



It's going to be an amazing couple of weeks - even if it doesn't stop raining. Ah yes, the weather - I mentioned it once and just about got away with it. Everyone knows that we Brits are obsessed with the weather - largely because it's constant shifts and changes give us something reliable to fall back on for conversation to cover-up our social inadequacies.

It goes without saying (so I'm saying it anyway) that the weather affects the sailing competition in a way that it doesn't most other Olympic sports. Two weeks of strong breeze could radically change the medal table in comparison to two weeks of light air - and alter the fortunes, careers and lives of those involved.



So what's it to be...?

The opening day of racing is Sunday 29th July and it's just starting to come within reach of the long-range forecasts - and dare I say it, it looks like the pattern of relentless strong south-westerly’s and rain is breaking down, with the wind switching to the east and sunshine finally reappearing and there have been some hot days. It's still forecast to be pretty breezy, top end of the teens... but this is a very long range forecast, so let's not get carried away.

We'll get a much better idea of what might be developing as the days click by towards the Opening Ceremony - at least, very soon, there will be something to talk about other than the fact that it has just been shortened... Or whatever assorted Olympic ephemera takes your fancy.

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