© 2012 notworkrelated - David Rutter & Helen Roscoe. All rights reserved. L1013560

Our Olympic Games Experience, London 2012

In case you’ve been out of the country or have had your eyes and ears shut these past few weeks, London has hosted the 2012 Olympic Games and what a fortnight it has been. The coverage has been pretty immense and both through the television and radio waves and we have been hooked. Inspire a Generation…Inspire Roscoe and Rutter too!

We were lucky enough to get our hands on some Olympic tickets for London 2012 thanks to the Roscoe parents putting in a successful bid for the first night of Track and Field and we also picked up some tickets for the Women’s Team Foil Fencing event taking place at the Excel Arena.

It has to be said that we loved our Olympic experience. Starting with the fencing, which neither of us have any prior knowledge of we just liked the thought of getting to one of the lesser known Olympic sports. En-route we were greeted with Thai tourists eagerly anticipating one of their top table tennis players, always drawn to a group shot we couldn’t resist sneaking one there and then.

In the Excel arena Boxing, Judo, Table Tennis and Badminton were all taking place with more events going on there in the second week of action. Within the fencing competition we saw lots of competitive action too and Team GB were out in force attempting to go through the rounds. Fencing is tough to follow but we could tell who were the favorites  through the rounds with Italy and France having the most International support in the crowd. Happening in the Excel arena that day also saw an epic Judo silver medal from Team GB’s Gemma Gibbons, so there was a lot of buzz at Excel throughout.

The next day we were so excited to be taking our turn at the Olympic Athletics Stadium accompanied by Jan and Den (Helen’s parents). We’d been staying in Bromley for a few days and were very pleased with the transport links, the underground ran smoothly all around central London and the free Zone 1-9 railcards which came with the tickets were well used. For our final night we opted to camp with the parents out in Theydon Bois. A campground that is right next to the train station and a 25 minute ride to the Olympic Park. Perfect.

Once we were in the Olympic Park we were greeted by a pretty slick security procedure and thousands of people doing the same, so another thumbs up on that side of things too. The amount of people in the park was amazing, quite overwhelming and the buzz was so exciting. We managed to explore the park pretty well walking towards and around many of the other sporting venues finishing our stroll in Park Live where a large double sided screen attracted even more thousands of people checking out the action in the velodrome. For some people this was where they would watch the action from. Perhaps our biggest criticism about the park was that they could have done with more screens around as there were big queues for getting into Park Live, which at peak times operated on a one-in-one-out basis.

At 6pm we made our way to our seats in the Olympic Stadium, spotting Catherine Merry on the way in doing her bit for Five Live Sport. We were quite high up in the stadium with seats pretty much opposite the 100m finish. After the initial excitement and photographs of us in there surrounded by nearly 80,000 others doing the same we started to enjoy the action. Greg Rutherford was going in the long jump qualifying, little did we know we were watching a champion in the making and also Jess Ennis competed in both the shot put and 200m as part of her Olympic winning performance. It was all quite overwhelming at times and Helen had to fight back a few tears each time the roars from the crowd got behind a home athlete, especially Ennis, she is a little star!

We also saw the 100m qualifying rounds which saw race after race go under 11 seconds, fast!! The women’s discus qualifying took place and the men’s shot put final saw the heavy weights in action with the finishing event being the light-weights in the women’s 10,000m final. Never has a stadium applauded such an event on the first night of action. Jan and Den were in Athens and Beijing and were astounded by the support.

Our biggest annoyance was the use of music whilst competitors were trying to achieve their physical peak performance. Music pumping straight into the audience was just a little too much at times when trying to concentrate on a certain event. We appreciate that they were appealing to the mass audience who want to see a show, and perhaps this compensated a little for the price of tickets…who knows, surely the athletic performance is a show enough in itself? And why Ben Sheppard was there…it’s not X-Factor, this is the Olympic Games!

Taking this aside we were thrilled with our Olympic experience and wanted to go again and again to support the athletes from around the world, competing at the highest level. This is something to be admired and we felt proud that the British pulled off a fantastic games, a wonderful Olympic Park and look at where we finished on the medal table, fourth, wow! Not bad for a country of 60 million!

In September we’re back in the Olympic Stadium for the Paralympic closing ceremony and in between we may try to sneak in a few tickets for Paralympic action, which is set to have more of a following than in any other Paralympic Games in history.



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