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An Outstanding Games

An Outstanding Games

The New Zealand Olympic Team is celebrating an outstanding games that exceeded targets and made New Zealanders proud.

New Zealand athletes finished competition with a fifth gold medal by Lisa Carrington that brought the total medal count to 13. Performance targets set by both High Performance Sport New Zealand and the New Zealand Olympic Committee were surpassed and London now sits equal with Seoul 1988 for the most medals at an Olympic Games.

The silver medal by Sailing’s 49er crew Blair Tuke and Peter Burling saw New Zealand win its 100th Olympic medal while the five gold medals were second only in number to the eight won at Los Angeles in 1984.

President of the New Zealand Olympic Committee Mike Stanley has praised the team.

“The athletes’ performances on the field have been outstanding. Five gold medals, three silver and five bronze is an incredible result in the world’s most competitive sporting arena. The bar continues to be raised and we’ve stepped up with a 44 percent improvement on Beijing 2008. We’re also set to finish inside the top ten percent on the medal table.

“There were a total of 98 performances by New Zealanders during the Olympic Games, with 72 finishing in a top 16 and half of those were in the top eight. We are exceptionally proud of our athletes and the support team behind them.”

New Zealanders in both London and at home united behind the success of the team. Kiwi House in London was a hugely popular venue and messages of support for the team via Facebook and Twitter were overwhelming.

The New Zealand Olympic Team departs for New Zealand tomorrow (Monday UK time) with the majority landing in Auckland on two flights Wednesday morning (NZ38, 0900h – cycling, and SQ321 1050h, rowing, sailing, hockey).

The official Christchurch Olympic Welcome Home event will take place on Friday 24th August. Additional athletes, including members of the bronze medal winning equestrian eventing team, will fly into New Zealand in time for a day of public celebrations that will cap off the highly successful London Olympic campaign. Around 100 athletes, including most medal winners, will take part.

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Drysdale named as flag bearer

Mahe Drysdale was named Closing Ceremony flagbearer at an Olympic team function prior to the Closing Ceremony at the Olympic Village where the team took the opportunity to reflect on the principles that had been important to this campaign.

Dave Currie said “the team focused on providing a high performance environment which athletes respected and supported one another and had an absolute commitment to performance. The sport within the Olympic team that clearly demonstrated those principles was the rowing team.”

Mahe demonstrated his own commitment to high performance but for also his on-going support of the other athletes within the New Zealand Olympic Team.

“We are delighted to have named such a proud athlete who has played such an important role in creating and maintaining a positive and strong team environment.” Dave Currie says.

“I’m so honoured to be chosen as the Closing Ceremony Flag bearer. Winning Gold was just fantastic, but being able to support other athletes as they prepare for competition has been amazing. The New Zealand Olympic Team has had some amazing performances and I am pleased I could support the whole team as they progressed through competition. It is fantastic to be a part of one of New Zealand’s most successful Olympic Teams ever.” Mahe Drysdale said prior to the Closing of the Games.

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