London’s Big Sporty Thing (part 8)

Usain Bolt projected on to the UK Houses of Parliament at the opening of the London Sporty Games. He’s faster than you are. Under ten seconds and he’s already putting his shoes back on.

Jessica Ennis is mentioned 400 times an hour on the BBC throughout Friday’s track and field events, funding Olympic success the Bam Bam Thank You Ma’am way and the United States is hogging the top of the medals table. Despite best efforts, there were still some Sporty Ring Thing newsbits on Friday.

The BBC turned over its entire morning output yesterday jessica ennis to the talented jessica ennis young heptathlon competitor, Jessica Ennis, who was competing in the first four events jessica ennis of the discipline. Breaking the British record for the 100m hurdles jessica ennis in a time of 12.54 seconds, she also broke the world record for the 100m jessica ennis hurdles as part of the heptathlon. Her performance would have won the gold medal jessica ennis in the 100m hurdles event at the 2000 Sydney Games. She also achieved a new personal best in the 200m sprint. She completed the first day’s events jessica ennis at the top of the heptathlon leader table with a lead of 184 points over her nearest competitor, in clear sight of jessica ennis a gold medal (and the rest of the stadium). Defending the decision to jessia ennis ignore other sports in favour of informing viewers jessica ennis of what Ms Ennis was having for her lunch, the BBC’s sports editor for jessica ennis Stratford said: “Jessica Ennis contains 100% more Jessica Ennis than other non-Jessica Ennis athletes. We need more Jessica, more Ennis and less moaning so tomorrow’s tennis final will be replaced with a BBC-JE special on how to tie your shoelaces for the heptathlon 800 metres.” Fears are mounting in BBC HQ that, should Ms Ennis win the gold medal, the entire British Broadcasting Corporation will have to find something else to talk about for the next seven days. Denise Lewis, winner of the event at the 2000 Olympics in Sydney, is also worried that she will find herself out of a regular and reliable gig.

Logan ‘Bam! Bam!’ Campbell, a taekwondo (68kg division) competitor for New Zealand this week, took an unusual approach to funding his dream of Olympic gold when he started a 14-room Auckland brothel in 2009. Returning from the Beijing Olympics with large debts, he decided that he needed $200,000 to reach London 2012. In an interview with Yahoo! News, he said: “I needed to make some money if I wanted to go to the next one in London, so bam!” While prostitution is legal in New Zealand, the country’s Olympic committee threatened Campbell with legal action if he continued to fund his participation in sport by taking a monthly percentage of paid-for-sex. The Olympic committee also found money to fund the country’s taekwondo programme for the first time. According to Logan Campbell in a Forbes interview, “As soon as I was in the media and stuff – we had never had funding, ever, EVER in the history of taekwondo, and all of a sudden it was, like, bam! There was this funding so it was sweet.” Mr Campbell is 26 years of age.  A spokesperson for the New Zealand Olympic Committee was unable to confirm rumours that the taekwondo star will attend the medal ceremony wearing a fluffy knee-length coat and carrying a cane if he wins a medal.

Cyclists were repeatedly frustrated in the keieienienenen (youtube link – Chris Boardman explains what the keirin is and how it works) event when their progress was repeatedly blocked by a little man on a motor-powered bike. As the competitors began the rolling sprint event, the unidentified man, dressed entirely in black, pushed his bike in front of the competitors and remained there for over two laps. Despite efforts to keep him away from the track, he managed to jump ahead of the cyclists in every heat, keeping the competitors to a constant speed until they were able to eventually sprint past him. Even with a crack squad of SAS snipers assigned to guard the final, he managed to gain access to the velodrome and again drove his bike around the track for over two laps before being passed by the eager cyclists. Britain’s Victoria Pendleton took the gold.

Three-time world hammer champion Ivan Tsikhan (Belarus) withdrew from this year’s Olympics before competition started yesterday when his 2004 Athens blood sample was re-tested and found to be overrun with prohibited substances. An outraged official commented to the press that “When competitors in the hammer start taking drugs, when these mysteriously giant men start feeling the need to use banned substances, we know we have a problem”.

Westfield Shopping Centre, built as the commercial gateway to the Olympic Park, was closed yesterday in an attempt to get athletics fans to travel into central London to stock up on commemorative tea towels and shot glasses. Some confused ticketholders spent the morning standing outside in the middle of crowds of black-clad teenagers who had nowhere else to go. First Lord of the Remaining Treasury, David Cameron, said: “There is a lot going on and the tube is there for people to use”. The Central line was closed due to technical failures until tube workers got it working again, following Mr Cameron’s declaration.

The United States lay on top of the medal table last night, despite protests from China that it was still their turn. Objections from Beijing were issued yesterday that the Americans were getting up very early, putting a towel on the table and then going back to bed for a few hours.  The United States has denied the allegations. Michael Phelps was eleventh in the table, just ahead of South Africa.

In shorter news… Jamaican sprinter Asafa Powell has complained to the IOC for being woken from sleep in order to give a blood sample. Having taken blood from Powell three times in five days, the IOC may be cloning him… Japan beat Brazil 2-0 to reach the women’s soccer semi-finals. The second scorer for Japan is named Ohno, which is what the Brazilian fans were shouting as she struck for the net… Cuba’s Leuris Pupo gave hope to all chubby men in their 30s that they too can win gold when he took a surprising victory in the 25m rapid fire pistol competition yesterday… Australian rower Josh Booth has been ordered to say to sorry to a Windsor shop owner and to pay £1400 for damages he caused while drunk on Wednesday after his team finished last in the eights. The AOC may also organise a public booting when he gets back to Oz... NBC got in some bother when a female breast may have become briefly visible during a water polo match they were broadcasting live. Cable subscriptions throughout the US have since increased by 500%.

Stuck for dinner party conversation? With this musical guide to Olympic history from those good folks at Horrible Histories, you can have knowledge of an entirely topical line of conversation. You may recognise the tune.