What a week it’s been!
This Olympics has been fantastic for equestrian sport; on top of last week’s eventing team silver, the show jumpers took the team gold; the first time Britain’s done that for 60 years. I did get to watch it at work on Monday, despite my colleagues’ doing their best to put me off, and it was fantastic. One even videoed me trying to give a running commentary to my friend over the phone, although I didn’t completely know what was going on because the sound was off – and he put the video on Facebook. Thanks mate :-)
Then, of course, the dressage team followed suit; the first time we’ve ever won an Olympic medal for dressage and it was gold!
It meant I was looking forward to Thursday even more, if that were possible:
We had to buy a big Union Flag :-)
Greenwich looked so good and the park was looking beautiful.
The arena was great and somehow, not sure how as we hadn’t paid that much for our tickets, we had pretty much the best seats in the house; four rows back and right on the centre line, with a brilliant view over the Queen’s House to the City of London.
And it was superb. the atmosphere was electric, the riding was fantastic, the music was perfect – although one Portugese rider did come in to I Got a Feeling by the Black Eyed Peas; not quite the usual style for the kur :-)
Anky van Grunsven is a legend and her horse Salinero is brilliant:
That combination was unbeatable in the past but he’s 18 now and not quite as good as he was… it was still fantastic to watch though.
But we were really waiting for the British riders, of course. First was Laura Bechtolsheimer:
I love that chestnut horse – and she did her test to music from The Lion King! She came in to the music at the very start of the film, which I think is the best film intro ever, with her slow bits to the African chanting and music from Can You Feel the Love Tonight and faster work to I Just Can’t Wait to be King… it was superb. We were all on our feet, shouting ourselves hoarse (geddit?!) afterwards and she went into the lead :-)
Carl Hester was also brilliant:
He’s the one that’s led the team to this success and he’s a legend – but he couldn’t quite get to the top of the leaderboard, bless him.
Then the Dutch Adelinde Cornelissen did a beautiful test and scored 88.196 per cent; a huge score for Charlotte Dujardin to try to beat.
But she’s got nerves of steel.With a patriotic soundtrack, including Bond music, Land of Hope and Glory, the chimes of Big Ben and even The Great Escape, she produced a beautiful, stunning test. You could have heard a pin drop as we waited for her score but when the 90.089 per cent was announced, the roar must have been audible from Scotland… I had tears in my eyes and bless her, she was in floods :-)
Everyone was on their feet cheering and even in the wait before the medal ceremony, no one minded because we were all soaking up the atmosphere – and doing a Mexican wave that went about four times round the whole stadium :-)
The medal ceremony was at the far end but at least there were big screens…
And we got to hear the National Anthem :-)
All in all, it was one of the best days ever; so good for the sport and out of this world for Charlotte and the British team. I just can’t believe the Olympics are nearly over – what will I do with myself then?!
Have a great weekend.