08/05/2012 09:09 EDT | Updated 10/05/2012 05:12 EDT

EYES ON LONDON: Bolt does it; Richards-Ross does it; Gaitlin surprises; Pistorius bows out

LONDON - Around the 2012 Olympics and its host city with journalists from The Associated Press bringing the flavour and details of the games to you:


Usain Bolt did it.

Bolt gave a wink to the camera before stepping into the blocks, then blew away the rest of a blazing field with a time of 9.63 seconds in the 100 metres.

Bolt started a little slow as usual, but once he started running upright, it was all over.

He grinned and winked right up until the start of the race and then confidently strutted into the stands immediately afterward. He grabbed a Jamaican flag and waded into the roaring, undulating crowd alongside teammate and silver medallist Yohan Blake for hugs and congratulations.

Blake finished second in 9.75. American Justin Gatlin took the bronze in 9.79.

Bolt now joins Carl Lewis as only the second man to go back-to-back in track's biggest race.

— Jon Krawczynski — Twitter



"They call me the glitter-faced warrior." — DeeDee Trotter, American bronze medallist in the 400, who wore red, blue and silver glitter next to each eye.

— Jon Krawczynski — Twitter



It's been called the longest sprint — a lot can happen in the 400 between the starting gun and the finish line.

Sanya Richards-Ross was behind Amantle Montsho of Botswana as they made the turn, but the tiny American runner accelerated through the stretch to win the Olympic 400-meter race Sunday.

Richards-Ross's time of 49.55 edged out the defending champion, Christine Ohuruogu of Britain, who also deployed a strong kick to finish in 49.70. American DeeDee Trotter won the bronze.

It was the first U.S. gold in track and field at the London Games — and it was a long time coming for Richards-Ross, who sobbed at the Beijing Bird's Nest Stadium when she finished third in 2008.

— Sheila Norman-Culp — Twitter



When Sanya Richards-Ross lined up in the middle of the pack of her 400 field, the runner in lane 8 was way out in front.

She wasn't getting a head start. The curves in the track mean the outside runners would have to run a longer race if they all started in the same position.

So the starts are staggered along the track with lane 1, the closest to the infield, being the furthest back.

They don't need to do that in the 100 because the runners don't have any curves to negotiate.

— Jon Krawczynski — Twitter



The Blade Runner didn't advance to the 400-meter finals on Sunday night. That isn't stopping him from inspiring the rest of the field.

South African Oscar Pistorius finished last in his semifinal heat of the 400 metres on Sunday night. Unless South Africa chooses him for the 4x400 relay, his run at the London Games is over.

That he's even running at all is amazing enough. Pistorius runs on carbon fiber blades after being born without fibulas.

Grenada's Kirani James won the heat, then took his name plate off and exchanged it with Pistorius.

"He's an inspiration for all of us," James says. "He's very special to our sport."

— Jon Krawczynski — Twitter



Boston Celtics coach Doc Rivers has been to many events during these Olympics — including the men's 100-meter showdown on Sunday night.

Rivers wasn't the only NBA name in the stadium: LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony, Kobe Bryant, Kevin Durant and others were a section away from where he sat to watch Usain Bolt race.

"Usain Bolt's the biggest act in town," Rivers says. "There's no doubt. Basketball, especially here, it's not as big. But track, it's amazing how big it is in other countries. I wish it was like that in the States. I really do. It's amazing to watch. It's 10 seconds. It's less than 10 seconds. It's amazing."

Rivers and the Celtics will open the new season in Miami on Oct. 30, when the Heat raise their championship banner in a pregame ceremony.

He watched Michael Phelps swim, saw some boxing and cycling as well. But his favourite event? Beach volleyball.

"It's hilarious," Rivers says. "It's a bar and an event at the same time. It's the most fun thing, by far."

— Tim Reynolds — Twitter



LeBron James got briefly stuck trying to get into the jam-packed Olympic Stadium for the 100-meter final on Sunday night.

He wasn't bothered.

"I wasn't going to miss this," said James, the NBA's reigning MVP and NBA Finals MVP from the Miami Heat, as he and Carmelo Anthony headed to join teammates in prime seats near the finish line to watch reigning Olympic winner Usain Bolt, world champion Yohan Blake and 2004 Olympic champion Justin Gatlin.

James and his USA Basketball teammates made it a point to be there for the marquee event of the Olympics, and James didn't hesitate when asked pick who would win:

"Oh — Usain."

— Tim Reynolds — Twitter



Mo Farah's victory in the 10,000 metres on Saturday night practically shook the earth under Olympic Stadium from the roar of the crowd.

On Sunday, it shook one Mo time.

Farah returned to the stadium for his medal ceremony and most of the 80,000 in attendance thundered through "God Save the Queen" as he stood on the podium.

With a bright smile on his face, Farah waved to the crowd and walked off the track like the champion he is.

The night belongs to the sprinters. This moment was all his.

— Jon Krawczynski — Twitter



As the men's 100-meter semifinals were set to begin, a group of giddy fans scrambled up a stairwell looking to get into the stadium.

"Where do we go? Where do we go?" one yelled.

They tried door after door but kept getting turned away because it was the wrong section.

Happens to hundreds of fans a night. No big deal, right?

Well these weren't just any fans. It was LeBron James, Kobe Bryant, Kevin Durant and most of the U.S. men's basketball team. Guys who aren't used to being told "No."

Kevin Love, Carmelo Anthony, Russell Westbrook, Chris Paul and Andre Iguodala also were in the group scrambling to catch a glimpse of the heats.

"Let's go! Let's go!" Love hollered.

They finally talked their way into a section and James recorded Bolt's heat on video.

Once it was over they were hustled out of the area and escorted to their seats. Plenty of time to watch the final.

Check out the picture here:

— Jon Krawczynski — Twitter



Hungarian wrestler Peter Modos certainly isn't sneezing at a bronze medal.

After beating Denmark's Erik Nybloom to win a bronze out of the 55-kilogram consolation bracket, Modos ran over and jumped so high into his coach's arms that his torso nearly smacked his coach's shoulder.

Modos then ran across the mat and did a cartwheel, which he followed with a succession of backflips.

He also hugged Nybloom, who understandably wasn't all that into it.

— Luke Meredith — Twitter



They bake in the sun all day and roast by fire all night.

Having a seat by the Olympic cauldron may seem like the perfect place to watch Usain Bolt and Yohan Blake burn up the track.

But their blazing times aren't the only things heating this place up. The enormous fire in the cauldron makes a seat in the section beside it almost uncomfortably hot.

As you approach the area, the temperature cranks up, and just being in the vicinity starts the beads of sweat gathering.

It could be a prime location when the sun sets and a chill hits the air. Anyone got marshmallows?

— Jon Krawczynski — Twitter



Forget all the talk of the United States and China battling for supremacy of the London Olympic medals table. The runaway leader is ... Queen Elizabeth II.

The British monarch is also the sovereign of Australia, Canada, New Zealand and Jamaica — to name only those countries that have medaled at the 2012 games and have the queen as their head of state.

As of Sunday evening, their combined total of medals was 75, outstripping the 59 snagged by China and the 56 won by the United States at the same hour. And that was before Jamaicans Usain Bolt and Yohan Blake looked likely to win more booty for Her Majesty in the 100-meter men's final later Sunday night.

The queen's gold medal total at 8 p.m. London time on Sunday was 22 — with Team GB contributing the majority, 16. The others came from Australia (one), Canada (one), New Zealand (three) and Jamaica (one).

That total trailed behind China's 29 and 27 for the United States, formerly a subject of the crown. Still, not bad at all for a monarch who celebrated 60 years on the throne this June.

— John Leicester —



Great Britain's Louis Smith just tweeted about his "mad day" after getting the silver medal in the pommel horse.

"Wow crazyyyyy!! Wat a mad day loved the support at north greenwich arena all though it was mad scary. Love all my fans and friends xxx."

The 23-year-old was beaten to the gold Sunday by Hungary's Krisztian Berki, but only by a whisker.

He and Berki both finished with the same 16.066 score, but Berki got the gold because his execution score of 9.166 was a mere .10 points better.

— Fergus Bell — Twitter



"I slept with my medal beside me. It was an amazing feeling to wake up this morning and know that it wasn't a dream," Britain's Olympic poster girl Jessica Ennis on her heptathlon victory.

— David Stringer - Twitter



Just about everyone in the arena knew that the Duchess of Cambridge, the former Kate Middleton, was at the O2 Arena for the first day of event finals Sunday.

Everyone, that is, except for one of the gymnasts she came to see.

Louis Smith was a favourite for a medal on pommel horse, his signature event, and Middleton had a front-row seat for the show. When

Smith finished his routine, Middleton and the British gymnasts they were with jumped to their feet, cheering. Not that Smith noticed.

"If I had seen her, I would have blown her a kiss," Smith said.

Smith and Krisztian Berki finished with identical scores of 16.066, but the Hungarian got the gold because of a higher execution score.

— Nancy Armour — Twitter


EDITOR'S NOTE — "Eyes on London" shows you the Olympics through the eyes of Associated Press journalists across the 2012 Olympic city and around the world. Follow them on Twitter where available with the handles listed after each item, and get even more AP updates from the Games here: