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COMMENTATOR: Here comes Kelly Holmes. The crowd are on their feet.
Good foot work. But again, what a start.
Denise Lewis, Olympic champion.
Rebecca Adlington is bringing it home for Britain.
COMMENTATOR: Great Britain get the gold medal!
Yes, yes, yes.
Kelly Holmes for Great Britain. What a performance!
James DeGale is the Olympic champion.
You are absolutely brilliant.
Great Britain takes gold.
So, the venues for the London Olympics have spent the summer
being put through their paces.
Across the capital and beyond, competitors and spectators
are getting a first taste of what awaits them in 2012.
And so, as London prepares for the Games,
so do we on British Olympic Dreams in this edition
bringing you all the latest from the worlds of rowing,
Paralympic cycling and badminton.
First, to one of the stars of the Beijing Games,
who's aiming to become the first British swimmer in history
to successfully defend an Olympic title - Rebecca Adlington.
I was, like, why are people wanting to talk to me?
I didn't understand it.
I couldn't get my head round the whole interview and photos
and people wanting...
Do this, Bec, do that.
I'm, like, why are people interested in talking about me?
I'm from Mansfield. I'm a girl from Mansfield!
Why are people talking to me? And I was so baffled.
It was something I eased into and everyone was so nice.
I thought... I was like, "I'm going to get loads of criticism",
and everybody was going to start saying stuff about me
and I got really panicky.
Every single person, even now, has been so supportive and so nice.
Adlington coped with the attention which followed her Olympic achievements as best she could,
but Becky couldn't repeat the brilliance of Beijing in Budapest,
finishing seventh in the 800 metres at the 2010 European Championships.
You've got bigger things to come.
I'm so disappointed. You train so hard and...
'Even if I've had a really tough meet like the Europeans last year,'
I got so many nice messages that it just picks me up.
I love that we have that support in Britain and people do recognise
that we are just human beings
and not everybody wins all the time in sport.
It's so nice to have that support from people.
No athlete is ever going to win every race.
It's not possible.
If you look at Rebecca,
she's Britain's most successful ever swimmer
and one of the most successful ever female athletes.
People say, she's not quite won this medal
or not quite won that medal.
If you look at it in context over a five-year career at the top so far,
it's just unbelievably high achievement and consistency.
I remember we were on holiday with the family,
and I have got two older sisters,
my older sister's five years older than me
so she could swim up pretty well by the time I was younger,
and I remember I hated being the baby.
I was always like, "I want to do what they want to do."
I remember being on holiday, my mum was blowing my armbands up
and my sisters were in the pool
and I ran and jumped in the pool without my armbands
and everyone stopped and I came up and started swimming and carried on.
Everyone was like, "Oh, my God, she doesn't need the armbands!"
Let's stretch this freestyle out a bit more, everybody.
Don't get sloppy.
'I started coaching Rebecca at 12.
'My first impression was she was someone who was totally focused,'
Somebody who was prepared to pay the price, even from a young age.
She wanted to be good and she was prepared to do anything to be good.
Bill...we have such a great relationship.
We don't say many things to each other.
We are, like, "You all right?", "Yeah."
We can read each other so well, which is what is so good about it.
He knows I am tired. I don't have to tell him.
He knows when I'm happy or sad and he can read that straight away.
Sometimes in sport, people can get so caught up
with being a sports person, it takes over your life.
It's very important, especially for us who's swimming
it does take over your life, to remember,
I'm just a 22 year-old girl.
That's so sweet.
I was never that big.
I was always big. I swear I was born this big.
Family life is important to Becky.
Her sister, Chloe, runs a bridal business.
Clothes provide a refreshing change to chlorine.
I value Becky's support massively, along with all my family.
Becky's very honest. It's nice to have Becky involved
because I know she'll always tell me what she thinks
and give me the right opinion.
It's lovely to have her support and to be able to work together.
The support is amazing that I get from my family
and I give it to them as well.
I can go to my sister's and she cooks for me some nights a week
just so I can go straight to hers and food is on the table.
It is so bizarre, being there and talking about her day,
which is totally different to my day.
She's doing all these creative things.
They definitely keep me grounded.
My sisters and parents do not let me get away with anything.
Even when I've just come back, "Will you get..?", "No!"
I can't ask for anything. "Get it yourself!"
I didn't, honest to God, think I was going to win, going into the Worlds.
I just wanted to go and race well.
Rebecca Adlington of Great Britain,
world champion of the women's 800 metres freestyle!
What a superb swim that was.
I felt relieved more than anything else after my race. Ah!
It was just, like... Then the joy came. I was like, "Yeah!"
It was nice to get back and see where the rest of the world were at
and get an understanding, with a year to go,
how everyone's looking.
Not even thinking beyond 2012, to be honest,
whether it's retirement or not.
As a distance swimmer, you don't tend to go on past the mid-twenties,
because your body cannot do the work.
I've been doing solid 10 sessions a week,
getting up at 5.15am, pushing your body,
only having two weeks off a year, since I was 12.
I think it's definitely a thing to take time out after,
enjoy doing everything, and then see if I miss it to be honest.
If I want to get back in I'll be, like, get back in!
If I feel I can't improve any more, or I don't love the sport any more,
I'll definitely retire.
But, at the minute, I absolutely love it and don't want it to end.
Nick Hope talking to Becky there.
Success in London won't only be measured in terms
of how our athletes perform at the Olympics,
Britain will also be hoping to maintain a proud tradition
of producing successful Paralympic medallists.
One of whom is handcyclist Rachel Morris.
Tanni Grey-Thompson caught up with her
at the Para-Cycling World Road Championships in Denmark.
My name's Rachel Morris and I'm part of the Great Britain cycling team
and ride a handcycle.
The disability I have is reflex sympathetic dystrophy, or RSD,
which causes the brain and body to reject the limb that's been injured,
which then spreads, and it causes intense pain.
Good girl, good girl.
In the beginning, all I did was twist my ankle on a dry ski slope.
It wasn't even a wonderful snow-covered mountain.
I ended up with an awful lot of problems with it
which weren't picked up on at the beginning.
It is a strange thing, it's not particularly usual,
especially the way mine ended up going.
Unfortunately, it ended with me having multiple amputations.
All the medals and cups I've won, including my Beijing gold medal.
She has had to adapt her sport to her disability.
At school she was a runner and an athlete.
She progressed through sailing.
When she lost her second leg, sailing was no longer a possibility,
so she started doing handcycling.
My new bike room's coming on Look at that. Check that out!
It is not done yet.
It's going to have a turbo in there, so I can train in the winter.
Handcycling is more than a sport to me.
It's a way of managing the pain.
Without it, my life does become unmanageable.
She is remarkably like her grandmother,
who was also in a wheelchair. She had multiple sclerosis.
Rachel grew up seeing Grandma in a wheelchair
and she got the idea that if you want to get somewhere,
you've got to go for it.
We're here in the Danish town of Roskilde
for the Para-Cycling Road World Championships.
Tough enough for anyone at full strength,
but two weeks ago, Rachel Morris dislocated her shoulder
during a training run.
We did a time-trial set effort with the squad just out of Bath.
I went into a corner and it was very wet on the roads,
quite a wet day, and there was quite a slippery surface.
Very shiny Tarmac and the bike just slid.
It felt like it locked and slid.
It went into the bank
and managed to flip the bike lengthways and sideways.
I came out of it with a dislocated shoulder.
Causing this injury potentially could trigger the same reaction
that has happened in my legs
and the RSD to become active in my arm.
Obviously, I have no legs.
Worst-case scenario - it could do the same thing.
I have become very, very worried.
Rachel came here as the defending world champion in two races,
the time-trial over 15 kilometres and the road race over 30.
Despite her best efforts, in this year's time trial she could only manage fourth.
The best bit is my shoulder did
make it round the course.
So I came out in that sense and completed something
I didn't think I'd have done two weeks ago.
I didn't do it as I would want to.
I gave it everything I could have done
and I couldn't have done more as I am at the moment.
Two days later, with her shoulder strapped up once again,
she reached the podium in the road race, crossing the line for bronze.
After your accident so close to the World Championships,
how much of a relief was it you were able to compete here and race?
It's been a mixed thing.
It was mixed coming into it, which is why I left it as a late decision.
The idea of coming in injured and not being at the top,
not being where I want to be ultimately on top of the podium
was quite hard to get my head around.
But on the other side of it, I desperately wanted to be here, because that is what I do.
It's what I get up to do in the morning
and what I go to bed thinking about. That is me.
I have got to think of next year and next year is the ultimate goal
for everything and everyone and the pinnacle of my career.
If that was taken from me, I think that would possibly be the point
where I would give up, which is a terrifying thought.
That has so much power and emotion in it, that it does drive me on.
So, yes, next year is massive in lots of ways.
My British Olympic dream would be to achieve another gold medal
for Great Britain at the Olympics next year.
To be standing on top of the rostrum in London.
For me, personally, that would be a huge thing
but also for British judo.
We've never had an Olympic Champion.
It's fairly in our faces all the time,
and, yeah, it's always in the back of my mind.
BOTH: This is Horse Guards Parade.
It's a great place for the venue.
We've got Whitehall right there and Downing Street over there with David Cameron
and The Mall right behind us.
It's not a bad place to have a venue, for sure!
This is the walk we do as we come off the warm-up court and head towards the main stands.
We always take our flip flops, so we have to walk on the pebbles.
It doesn't feel very nice, but...
Make some noise for Lucy Boulton and Denise Johns!
We go up the steps, get high-fives from the crowd.
Play some nice music.
# Here come the girls! #
Gets you pumped up for the match.
These stands have been full all week.
At first, people didn't really know what to do.
They were quite quiet on centre court and then people started getting into it.
Beach volleyball is renowned for having a party atmosphere.
The London crowd haven't let us down.
That China game was our career highlight.
Beating a bronze medallist was... it was a great match
and we really challenged them. It's been a brilliant week.
Everyone's so excited about coming back next year.
This is the North America area of the 2012 Gardens,
the latest section of landscaping at the Olympic Park
that's nearing completion.
Beijing gold medallists Pete Reed and Andy Hodge faced a momentous task
at this year's World Rowing Championships.
Since the 2008 Games,
they've raced New Zealand 13 times and lost the lot.
It's been a trying season for the British odd couple
who now have to make some big decisions together ahead of 2012.
We're quite different guys but we're mates.
When we're on the water we fool around sometimes
and work hard together, work well together.
We get on well. It's not always fun and games, we argue as well.
We've got our bubble, nothing outside matters to us.
We just concentrate on the rowing and when we're finished,
your personality changes.
It's fair to say we know each other well.
I probably see Pete more than anyone else in my life.
At least he's got a wife!
I've been single for a long time,
so I go home and it's just me and the flat!
What do you do?
You go home and you think about the rowing the next day.
We haven't won a race against the Kiwis ever in a pair.
We're well practiced at that one.
Yeah, we know what that feels like and we're both sick of it.
COMMENTATOR: New Zealand from Great Britain. It's so close. Silver today.
That is about as close as it ever got.
I was BLEEP off afterwards.
It hurts more when you are so close and when it's that close you think, "could I have done anything else?"
It takes a long time to get over a defeat like that.
You need to get some serious training under your belt.
We take the good things from it.
There were a lot of good things to take away from it.
We can see that. I think we'll be dangerous this season.
We should have won the first one,
we did because the Kiwis weren't there.
It wasn't a devastating row. We didn't demolish the field.
COMMENTATOR: It'll be a well-earned first gold medal for them
in the men's coxless pair.
We missed Hamburg, that was gutting.
It was hard to watch that on TV. We trained so much.
We raced so little. Seeing other crews racing was tough.
We saw the Kiwis walk in by a lot.
We had a good Henley Royal Regatta.
We won that with a course record,
beat another record there and won easily.
We went to Lucerne, thought we were up for a good one
and got absolutely demolished.
COMMENTATOR: It's 13 wins in a row for New Zealand over Great Britain
who are, it has to be said, limping over the line.
Being beaten by seven seconds is never nice.
But if you look at it in isolation,
you could dig yourself a deep hole.
We're realistic, if we are ever going to be able to beat the Kiwis
perhaps it'll only be by a second or two.
Going to the world cups, we've got certain things to do,
but the winning isn't the be-all and end-all.
It's bloody annoying coming second the whole time
but there's always a positive somewhere.
Even if it's been a failure by the result,
you can draw something from it and come back stronger.
Hodge is probably more glass-half-full than I am.
If we have a bad one, it's easy for me to go quiet,
rest and think about it quietly.
He's more optimistic than I am.
-That's fair enough, isn't it?
Maybe the BBC would like to hear about how the session went?
Sessions like that, you know you can win stuff.
It looks like a holiday while we're here.
Blue skies and beautiful scenery and the hotel is custom-made
for rowers, by rowers,
but we don't want to give the impression it's a holiday camp.
We're here to work hard and get the final touches.
It's a professional environment
and a professional set-up.
It's definitely a holiday camp. The world should follow our lead.
We barely do any training here.
It's about lounging in the pool and sleeping. Take note.
Life after the Worlds doesn't really exist for me at the moment.
Worrying being what happens afterwards is pointless,
when we are trying to be focused on what we want to achieve.
The World Championships will be something special.
We'll have to put something together. It will be well rehearsed.
We'll have a good plan. We'll have to see how we get on.
COMMENTATOR: So much riding on the outcome of this race.
Not just for Pete Reed and Andy Hodge but for the whole of men's team.
Alongside them, 13 consecutive wins.
New Zealand just a fabulous race awaits.
The New Zealanders are laying down a huge marker.
There's one thing that you can be sure of, Peter Reed and Andy Hodge,
from Great Britain will not give up, not one single stroke.
They've got 200 meters to go. They are moving very, very well.
This is the desperate dying part of the race.
They are five strokes to the line.
It is New Zealand, three in a row, gold for New Zealand.
14 consecutive second places for Team GB.
That surely now has to be the last time we see
Peter Reed and Andy Hodge for Great Britain in the men's coxless pair.
Preparation has been great. We have enjoyed the build-up.
It's been a fantastic regatta. Tough to be beaten again.
What do we have to do to beat these guys?
We've got everything we need but they're a faster crew.
We know we're racing one of the best crews across all events.
Really proud to be part of that
and pushing as hard as we can and getting so close.
It has been a fantastic three years.
What happens for the next year? Only Jurgen knows that.
He's going to look after his gold medal.
I'm going to fight to make sure I'm in that gold medal boat.
Outstanding, right from the first stroke.
Silver for Hodge and Reed but overall the combined British team
enjoyed their most successful World Championships ever.
COMMENTATOR: We are the world champions
and Matt Langridge hits the water. It's going to be a photo finish.
Tom Aggar, Great Britain, world champion.
They're all now in maximum sprint.
It's going to be a gold medal executed with such class.
Great Britain will have it on the line.
It is gold today. The arms aloft.
There was an important change for Pete and Andy after the Worlds.
They've now moved into the coxless four,
where they won their Olympic gold back in Beijing.
My British Olympic dream would be
going into the Olympic triple jump final
having already set the world record previously
and going in the first round and breaking my old world record.
Then just sitting back and enjoying the rest of the competition, knowing that title's mine.
While many Olympic disciplines rely on individual excellence and endeavour,
some sports, such as hockey, also require togetherness,
camaraderie and team spirit for their success.
England's men seem to have all three in abundance
as we track them down in their team hotel
during the Euro Hockey Tournament in Germany.
Hi, I'm Richard Alexander and I'm part of the England hockey team
and I will give you a tour of the fourth floor. We'll see what the lads are up to.
You don't get the smell on camera.
One of our players is asleep just after the game.
This is Ashley Jackson and Glenn Kirkham's room.
As you can see, they're getting some golf practice in.
Always important to practice your putting.
-This is my abode.
Obviously I've got all the essentials here, my flat cap.
Wenlock. He's always there. He comes with me every trip.
The thing about tweed, it's a strong look wherever you are.
So, I think it should be standard issue.
I'm planning to get the England crest on.
Unofficial England kit and there's going to be a kangaroo court later.
The lads will get together and work out how they will fine him.
We're now taking you to the other side, the posh side of the hotel.
This is unbelievable. Cracking bathroom.
Can't believe their bathroom. Much nicer than ours.
This is obviously hand-to-eye co-ordination.
A lot of training goes on.
They're quite good as well.
It may look like a good life.
But it's actually, certainly for the athletes, it's a hard life.
They don't get the social side of life that most people get.
You can't just leave people in hotel rooms to fester.
We've only got an hour of filming, guys.
If you didn't enjoy the down time, these trips away
would be a tough time because we are often away for two or three weeks at a time for tournaments.
We're lucky that we enjoy the time we spend together.
-This is a joke.
Richard Smith, the winner of that point, Iain Mackay the loser.
Need to make sure that is clear.
"RS 29" on the winning bat!
It's been a tricky few years on and off the court
for British Badminton with little success on the global stage.
That is until this year's World Championships
and the emergence of surprise silver medallists Chris Adcock and Imogen Bankier.
Nick Hope caught up with the pair at their Milton Keynes training base.
Still holding it, it feels amazing.
It's a massive incentive now.
We know we've got a world silver medal. It's an amazing achievement.
It's something that I hoped in my life I would achieve,
but to be holding is just a different level of achievement.
REFEREE: On my left, Chris Adcock and Imogen Bankier.
Talk me through your World Championships.
When I look back on it now, it's almost like a blur.
We had a solid start.
I think after that we knew we were going to be up against tough seeds.
In the last 32 we had to play the eighth seed.
Played really well, like, really well.
Today that would have been our best result.
The momentum carried us through.
-We took out the 15th seeds from Japan.
-The fourth seeds.
Then again in the semi-final we played, they were ranked two in the world,
the second seeds who were in form.
It was quite surreal going through each match.
We kept playing better and better until the end of the week.
Chris Adcock and Imogen Bankier.
Everyone's had a break.
They're quite aware they don't want us to get injured.
It'll be quite a light session, hopefully, today.
-Feeling the fact that you have been a way for a little bit?
A week off doesn't do any good for the body.
Talk me through the posters around here.
We've got the Olympic wall.
We've got the two badminton Olympic medals up there.
We obviously had a discussion about who,
people who inspired us in the sport.
We've got Rebecca Adlington, Redgrave, Kelly Holmes.
It's a fantastic facility.
We have our gym on site and physio.
I come in once a day after training for a check-up.
At the minute, I have tight hips.
I had week off last week and after a tough week at the Worlds,
everything tightens up and it needs loosening up.
A tough week of training ahead.
Everything's very much on site and we're lucky to have that.
That's the Badminton Hall.
Then behind that is the gym where we do all our SNC stuff.
This is where we're heading over to now, it's The Lodge.
This is where we chill out and where some of the players live as well when they're living on site.
This is just the lounge in The Lodge, for chilling out at lunch times.
A few games go on. A bit of Mario Kart and everything.
-It is. A bit of GameCube.
We have a ranking going, as sad as it sounds!
-How intense does this get, though?
-Very. There is a lot of shouting.
Big intensity, sometimes more than goes on in the badminton hall.
The boys get very competitive playing Mario Kart.
It's unbearable sitting here when they're playing it.
The major factor of me and Imogen doing so well
is we enjoy yourselves.
To say we've been playing together for just a year,
just shows how quickly we've gelled.
Before your success there'd been only one other major
international medal for the sport since silver at the Athens Olympics.
Badminton has had funding cuts, coaches leaving,
and players complaining publicly.
-Was that ever a distraction?
-No, it certainly didn't affect us.
We didn't really pay much attention to what was going on.
The set up for me in England and Scotland for Imo,
and now come together as Team GB,
just makes everything worthwhile and shows the set up works.
Hopefully our success and the way we played
took attention away from that and focused on something positive
which was the good badminton that was being played in Wembley.
Unfortunately, that brings us to the end of another British Olympic Dreams.
Join us next time for more like this.
What I really want is to run well in an Olympics
and walk away and say, I gave it 100%.
Maybe it wasn't at the peak of my career,
but it was the best I could do and it was a good result.
-Not to be missed. Until next time, goodbye.
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