Olympics 2012 gymnastics team faced bus woes in Olympic village. Some Athletes reaching London to settle in the Olympic village got lost and wandered on London roads in bad weather for about four hours, but the mood was upbeat and the unexpected London tour hardly grudged despite the fatigue.
The buses of American and Australian got lost as their Scottish bus driver tried to navigate in the London streets for the first time.
However, once they landed in the village, the mood was upbeat and an excited Craig Kinsley, rookie Team USA javelin thrower, defined the mood as he tweeted, “I’ve just updated my Facebook status. England, London, Olympic Village, heaven.”
But when two-time world 400 metres hurdles champion Kerron Clement, along with dozens of athletes from the American and Australian teams, got lost when their bus wandered about in the wind and rain, then he had tweeted about the woes: “Um, so we’ve been lost on the road for 4 hrs. Not a good first impression London. Athletes are sleepy, hungry and need to pee. Could we get to the Olympic Village please?”
This Monday the first athletes started trickling in (some weary after the meandering London tour) from an estimated 40 countries.
The bus drivers were volunteer drivers from Scotland, Northern Ireland and other parts of the UK, some of who had never been in London before. Their woes were aggravated by satnav systems that did not include the address of the Olympic Village and one driver did not know how to read satnav.
One Liverpudlian coach driver confessed, “Loads of us have never been to London before. It’s great. We’re like tourists.”
Tom Pukstys, a coach with the USA, along with 25 other members of the team had flew overnight to Heathrow from Chicago faced a four hour drive across London when their Scottish driver got lost.
He said, “I was watching the satnav and it was telling us to go one way, then another. It was the first time he [the driver] had made the trip. If you are going to competition and get lost that would be devastating. But that’s not going to happen.”
The team’s spokesman, Patrick Sandusky, confessed that there had been “some limited challenges for some of our athletes travelling from Heathrow to the Olympic Village” but he was all praises for Locog’s organisation and declared that “one bus trip doesn’t detract from that a bit”.
Then the sailing team from Australia had a scare after a 23-hour flight when they briefly lost track of their sails at Heathrow. Then they had to wait two hours for their bus, and when they did get in the bus, the driver got lost for another two hours.
Australian official Damian Kelly said, “The driver didn’t know where he was going and hadn’t been told how to use the satnav. He was on his walkie talkie, we were on the phone to the Olympic Village getting directions and some of us were trying to guide us in using Google.