Rio’s Opening Ceremony Spectacle
Hard to say what the highlight was of the evening’s festivities. Certainly Brazilian supermodel home girl Gisele Bundchen‘s mezmerizing catwalk appearance in Maracana Stadium to “The Girl From Ipanema” ranked WAY up there. Her bittersweet retirement finale, sashayed in a shimmering, body-hugging evening gown that had all the markings of a wardrobe malfunction, thrilled spectators and TV viewers worldwide alike. Betcha Victoria’s Secret sales went off the chart the next day…
Americans weren’t disappointed either after eight-time Olympic gold medalist Michael Phelps lead Team USA as its official flag bearer. The athletes’ much-hyped uniform, designed by fashion icon Ralph Lauren, may have left a few underwhelmed, however. (Hey Ralph: Could you have made your Polo logo on the blazers any bigger? Nice that 2016’s line was made here in the U.S. instead of China–guess you got that message loud and clear after the 2012 Olympics uniform faux pas…)
Enough about fashion and on to what the Olympic Games are all about: sports! It’s still too early to tell which venue will have experienced the worst mishaps, but surely the brutal cycling road race course saw far too many casualties. While the men’s event was a far cry from last month’s epic Tour de France, congrats to Belgium cyclist Greg Van Avermaet who dashed out in the last kilometer to clock a winning time of six hours, ten minutes and five seconds to win Olympic Gold in Rio. On the women’s side it was Dutch cyclist Annemiek van Vleuten who, while leading the race with under 11 km to go, flipped her bike and landed on her head in a horrific looking crash. The official statement about her status at posting time was that she was conscious and able to communicate when taken to the hospital for examination. Whew!
But surely the unoffical first prize for worst accident happened Saturday, when French gymnast Samir Ait Said suffered a broken leg while vaulting during the Artistic Gymnastics segment of the men’s team qualifications.
“It was the kind of injury that made spectators hurriedly look away and caused teammates to bury their heads”, said CNN Wire. Not surprisingly because the leg breaking made a sharp crack that could be heard throughout the venue…
French gymnastics officials tweeted that Said fractured his tibia and fibula and would undergo surgery as soon as possible. They added that he thanked his fans for their support and vowed he’d be back to win the Gold at the Tokyo Olympics in 2020.
Here’s wishing him good luck for a full and speedy recovery.
Enjoy the rest of The 2016 Games in Rio, dear reader, and go Team USA! Unfortunately, sisters Serena and Venus Williams will not be bringing home any medals this time around after suffering a disappointing loss in the women’s doubles competition…