LONDON: Sunny weather is set to return to Britain in time for the start of the London Olympics after weeks of unseasonable summer downpours, predicted forecasters.
The Met Office, Britain’s national weather service, said much anticipated sunshine would return on Sunday and that southern England would enjoy dry weather next week, in time for London’s opening ceremony on July 27.
“Confidence is steadily increasing for the return to normal conditions to continue through the final week of July,” said the forecaster. “This weather pattern, for the UK as a whole, is closer to the climatological norm than the cool and wet scenario experienced so far this month.”
Forecasters have blamed the downpours on the jet stream, a strong-flowing ribbon of wind that crosses the Atlantic, settling unusually far south, but they predict that it will move northwards again soon. But the Met Office warned that the weather will remain ‘changeable’ in the weeks ahead.
“The south is most likely to see the best of any dry, bright, and at times warm weather, particularly at first. Some rain is likely at times but overall, conditions are unlikely to be as bad as we’ve seen so far this summer. However, a lengthy spell of hot, sunny weather does look unlikely.”
Britain has suffered widespread flooding in recent weeks, and the wettest period of April to June on record. Arriving in London on Monday, the first overseas athletes were greeted by leaden skies and persistent drizzle.
Manaudou seeking pleasure not medals
Meanwhile, France’s 2004 Olympic 400m freestyle champion Laure Manaudou said she was not obsessed with winning a medal at the London Games and instead was seeking to just enjoy her third Olympics.
The 25-year-old, who retired in 2009 after failing to win a medal at the 2008 Olympic Games, said she was in a totally different frame of mind compared to her previous two Olympics.
“I am in a different mindset,” said Manaudou, who is also a three-time world champion and nine-time European champion. “I have no desire to get obsessed about winning a medal. I don’t really feel any pressure, I am relaxed and training is taking place in ideal conditions.”
Published in The Express Tribune, July 19th, 2012.
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