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.
Should the Not Trying Hard Enough Police take a look at Usain St.Leo Bolt's performance in the 200 metres final on Thursday night?
As a track cycling illiterate I've avoided paying close attention to the Velodrome until watching today's heats in the men's keirin. And I immediately had one question: who is the dude in black on the pace vehicle?
In the Olympic Games there's a temptation to measure greatness by the number of medals won. This carries a bias towards those who enter many events and do well in most or all of them. On the other hand, there are those who enter only one event because that's what they specialise in, or that's all that's available. And among those athletes, those who came back Olympiad after Olympiad and keep on winning their one gold. Think Steve Redgrave or Al Oerter.
In the end, the result was beyond doubt. One of the greatest 100 metres fields of all time, but Usain Bolt still blitzed them.