With the torch approaching the end of its epic relay around Britain, Olympic fever is sweeping the country.Get ready for the sporting extravaganza with HELLO! Online's 2012 Games facts and figures.
• Triple host city
London is the first city to host the modern Olympics three times – the Games were previously hosted in the capital in 1908 and 1948.
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• Torch on tour
During its relay of Britain the Olympic torch has travelled over 8,000 miles– that’s twice the width of the USA - and has passed through over 1,000 cities and towns. In the capable hands of 8,000 lucky people, the triangular torch has been on the move for 70 days. Torchbearers were selected by public nomination as 'inspirational' members of the community.
• A fortnight of sporting excellence
On July 27, the Games begin with the opening ceremony, kick starting two weeks of the world’s toughest sporting competition. 26 sports will feature in over 302 events. The closing ceremony marks the end of the Games with the extinguishing of the flame on August 12. Both ceremonies are estimated to attract an audience of 4 billion worldwide.
• More women competitors than ever
The London 2012 Games are the most gender equal in Olympic history. The ratio of men to women competitors is 5,802 to 4,688 respectively, with women making up 46% of the Games' competitors – in 1908 male competitors outnumbered females 53 to one.
• World participation
Drawing from 204 countries, the competitor total tops 10,000. From tiny Pacific Palua's five competitors to the host country's whopping 542 athletes, competition is set to be fierce.
• Media mayhem
But their presence will be outweighed by the media who will be 20,000 strong. They are based at the enormous East London Olympic Media Centre which is the size of 6 football pitches.
• All that glitters
An Olympic gold medal is valued at around £450 and weighs 400g. It is composed of 92.5% silver, 1.34% gold and the remainder is copper.
• Tickets please
£20 buys you the cheapest ticket in town, whilst the most costly retails at the princely sum of £2,012 and guarantees the best seats at the opening ceremony.
• Make way for the Games
The purpose-built Olympic Park in East London is the largest new parkland in Europe for 150 years. Approximately 100 toads and 2,000 newts had to be relocated from the Olympic Park to allow the land to be developed.
• The fuel of champions
14 million meals are expected to be served during the games and The Food Charter states that ingredients must be locally sourced and sustainable wherever possible. Hopeful champions in the Olympic Village will be fuelled with starchy staples such as 25,000 loaves of bread and 232 tons of potatoes.
• The aftermath
After the Olympic fortnight, used sports equipment will be donated to charity and the athletes' Olympic Village will be converted into 3,600 apartments, most of which will be available as affordable housing.
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