The Olympic Games in London, UK, came to an end on August 12. The Olympic flame was put out. The Olympic flag was taken down and sent to Brazil’s Rio de Janeiro, the host city of the 2016 Olympic Games . The United States topped both the gold medal (46) and total medal (104) counts, followed by China (38 golds and 88 total medals). Here is a video showing some great moments from these Games called “Best of London 2012”.
As we bid farewell to these Games, let’s remember some famous Olympic moments from the past that represent the spirit of the Olympic games – athletes trying their best.
Abebe Bikila, an Ethiopian runner, won an Olympic gold medal in the 1960 Rome Olympics for the marathon. He ran bare foot! Growing up, he didn’t have running shoes and was not used to running in shoes.
John Akhwari from Tanzania fell and hurt himself while running the marathon at the 1968 Mexico Olympics. He did not give up, and was the last to complete the race. The winner of the marathon had been declared over an hour before he finished! He later said “My country didn’t send me here to start the race – they sent me to finish the race”.
In the 1988 Seoul Olympics, Greg Louganis, an American diver, hit his head on the diving board while diving. He received temporary stitches, got up, and dove again the same evening. The next day he won gold.
In the 1992 Barcelona Olympic games, Derek Redmond, a British athlete, tore his right hamstring while running the semi-final of the 400m. He hobbled on one leg assisted by his father, suffered the pain, and finished the race.
Kerri Strug, an American gymnast, participated in the 1996 Atlanta Olympics. She vaulted with a hurt ankle and helped the US Women’s Gymnastic team to win the gold medal.
In the 2000 Sydney Olympics, Eric Moussambani from Equatorial Guinea, set a record for the slowest time for the 100m freestyle swimming race. He had never seen an Olympic-size swimming pool before coming to the Olympics and had learnt how to swim just 8 months before the Games in a small pool in a hotel.
There are many more such Olympic moments.
Did you know?
The 2012 Paralympic Games will start in London, UK on August 29. The Paralympic Games are a multi-sport event for athletes with disabilities. The Games are held every four years after the Olympic Games.