diamond geezer

 Saturday, April 23, 2005

Counting down

Just in case London's Olympic bid might be slipping off your personal radar, a minor media stunt was stage-managed yesterday in the middle of Trafalgar Square. A big clock has been erected beneath Nelson's Column to count down the 75 days remaining until the IOC selects Paris as the venue for the 2012 Olympics. One man who still hopes otherwise is Seb Coe (right, in sensible suit), and he persuaded some 'big' political names to join him for the unveiling. Tessa Jowell (centre, in bright green) was joined by two anonymous shadow Sports Ministers (left, and cropped from photo), while Cherie Blair (2nd from left, grinning) also appeared in her new role as one of the bid's international ambassadors. Seb and Cherie both gave brief inspirational speeches, probably using words like 'hope', 'community' and 'legacy' except that nobody had remembered to bring a microphone so their pleadings were largely inaudible. Two real sportswomen, brought in for their photographic charm, removed the heavily-sponsored plastic cover from the giant white timer, and then a brief photo opportunity was staged. This may have been a non-event of Olympic proportions, but at least it all looked jolly impressive for 15 seconds on local TV news later in the evening. The clock is ticking, but most probably for that big French city across the Channel...
by Eurostar: 2 hours 40 minutes from Waterloo


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