2012 London Olympic Guided Reading
2012 London Olympic Guided Reading is the latest in my set of Olympic Guided Readers. Starting originally as a set of the History of the Olympic Games, I have had to add updates – as in the case of 2008 Beijing and now 2012 London. These updates come as separate scripts – but same format as before, with 6 speakers and a quiz at the end.
Interviewer: Britain certainly ‘did it right’ to quote Sir Sebastian Coe, chairman of the London Olympic Games Organising Committee.
Athlete: Starting with that amazing opening ceremony – three hours of British History, taking us from Britain’s agricultural past right through the Industrial Revolution to current internet times.
Cyclist: And who could ever have predicted
Sailor: James Bond speeding along the River Thames in that speed boat
Swimmer: Or Mr Bean conducting the orchestra
Boxer: Or Her Majesty the Queen parachuting into the Stadium!
Interviewer: That certainly was the best way to kick start the greatest games on earth! (Pauses) Of course, we have an impossible task this morning in trying to cover all those magical moments of the 2012 London Olympics.
Swimmer: Perhaps we should start with the most decorated Olympian of all time – the amazing Michael Phelps! His total medal tally, following his class performances in London, came to 18 gold, 2 silvers and 2 bronze.
Athlete: No wonder the Americans came out top on the medal table – with 104 medals, 46 of which were gold.
Cyclist: With China in second place with 88 medals
Sailor: And Great Britain in third place with 65 – an amazing achievement when you compare geographical and population sizes of these three countries.
Interviewer: But then the home team does have one huge advantage – having the home crowd behind them.
Boxer: And the home crowd could not have been prouder throughout the fortnight – particularly on that Super Saturday.
Cyclist: Six gold medals in a day!
Sailor: Three of them in an hour!
Athlete: Britain’s ‘Golden Girl’ Jessica Ennis winning the heptathlon; Greg Rutherford winning the long jump; and Mo Farah – victory in the 10,000 metres to add to his gold in the 5,000. Amazing!
Boxer: Well, what about Britain’s Nicola Adams? The first woman ever to win gold in Olympic boxing!
Athlete: Well, what about Usain Bolt? The fastest man on earth! Gold in the 100 and 200 metres final. The first man to defend both titles successfully. A true legend!
Cyclist: Well, what about Chris Hoy? He became the most successful British Olympian and most successful Olympic cyclist of all time!
Sailor: Well, what about Ben Ainslie – the most decorated sailor of all time?
Interviewer: Enough of the ‘Well’s! But take the last guy you mentioned. He would be the first to say it wasn’t all ‘plain sailing’ – sorry about the pun!
Sailor: Absolutely. He wasn’t in the lead from the start. In fact it was only after he ‘fell out’ with his Dutch and Danish competitors, that we saw his true spirit! “They’ve made me angry and you don’t want to make me angry” he said, before going on to win!
Interviewer: And that’s so important to remember. These great athletes make it look so easy – but it never is. Of course for every triumph there’s a disappointment.
Swimmer: Great Britain’s swimmer Rebecca Adlington was reckoned favourite to win her race. But despite setting a world record in Beijing she failed to win gold in London.
Interviewer: But her world record stands and bronze really is no disgrace as she so rightly pointed out in the post-race interview.
Swimmer: Britain’s Tom Daley was delighted with his bronze in the 10metre platform diving competition
Athlete: And British Beth Tweddle for her bronze on the uneven bars. Likewise, Britain’s Louis Smith certainly wasn’t disappointed with his silver in the men’s pommel horse final.
Interviewer: Or the men’s gymnastics team for winning bronze –first time for Great Britain since over a hundred years ago!
Boxer: It’s definitely not just down to the colour of that medal!
Sailor: Though it has to be said that for some, gold is definitely worth a wait! Britain’s Katherine Grainger won silver in three previous Olympics – at Sydney, Athens and Beijing. So to win gold on home ground in the double sculls race at Eton Dorney – that was really something, both for her, her rowing partner Anna Watkins and for the huge crowds that turned out to support her that day!
Interviewer: Indeed. It’s not often you see the great Sir Steve Redgrave in tears. Golden moments indeed!
Cyclist: And speaking of greatness – let’s not forget the great ‘Wiggo’!