london 2012

Best Paralympics ever? Calling America...

It's seems like a statement of the bleeding obvious to say that London 2012 has provided the best Paralympic Games ever. Regardless of the standard of play, they have captured the imagination like never before, in no small part because they, like the Olympic Games themselves, were conducted by LOCOG. No longer are the Paralympics a forgotten afterthought to the main event.

Massive live TV coverage in the UK through Channel 4, in Australia through the ABC, and elsewhere, but what of the US? Ten hours on NBC. Ten hours over nine days. Edited highlights.

London 2012: 85 who did, 119 who didn't

Twenty-six sports, 302 medal events, about ten and a half thousand competitors. A total of 204 National Olympic Committees represented at the Games of the XXX Olympiad, plus the "Independent" athletes. Medals were won by 85 NOCs, one less than the total at Beijing. That's 41 per cent of competing teams coming away from London with at least one medal, with Bahrain, Botswana, Cyprus, Gabon, Grenada, Guatemala and Montenegro each taking a medal for the first time. One hundred and nineteen NOCs missed out on an Olympic medal in London.

London Day Sixteen early edition: Remembering Walter Winans

August 12, 1920 - ninety-years ago today. A harness race at Parsloes Park, London. The trotter Henrietta Guy was approaching the finish line as its driver cried out "Stop my horse". The horse continued to the winning post, its driver fell to the ground, having suffered a heart attack, and died. An incredible end to the life of Walter Winans, a man whose place in the history of the Olympic Games is both unsung and unique.

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London Day Fifteen: Mo.

It can be a reflection of an occasion of euphoria to describe something as "the best ever". It could be the statement of a serial sycophant, as with the late JA Samaranch, to describe each Olympics as "the best ever". I'm not in a position to say whether the 2012 London Olympic Games - held in their tightly-controlled environment of both the strictest physical and commercial security - are the best ever. But watching from my armchair, my couch, my computer desk, more often from my bed at 5 or 6 am, I'm willing to call the athletics competition at the 2012 Olympic Stadium as the most enthralling I've seen. Even in those events where the favourite(s) were so obvious.

London Day Twelve: It's revaulting

As expected, Wangi's Nath and Goobs took out Australia's fifth gold medal on the water at Weymouth on Wednesday in the men's 49er class. That gives the Australian sailing team their second gold, making it the first time since Barcelona 1992 that swimming has not been our most successful gold medal sport.