Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Zara and Her Pals Deliver Silver Service; but No Golds Yet for Team GB

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Zara and Her Pals Deliver Silver Service; but No Golds Yet for Team GB

Article excerpt

Byline: Rob Phillips

ZARA Phillips became the first royal medal winner at the Olympics yesterday, saying it was "amazing" to be presented with silver by her mother.

As the Princess Royal looked on proudly, Zara received a rapturous reception from the home crowd at Greenwich Park, which also included the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry as members of her family turned out in force to support her.

She beamed and kissed the Princess Royal, who is herself an Olympian, on both cheeks after receiving her medal.

As Chariots Of Fire played in the background, Zara could be seen mouthing "oh man, oh man" as her mother began presenting medals to Team GB's eventing team, including Northallerton's Nicola Wilson, Mary King and Kristina Cook and William Fox-Pitt.

The last time a British eventing team won gold was when her father Captain Mark Phillips, now US coach, competed in Munich in 1972. He also won a silver in 1988, but he was not then a member of the royal family.

In 1976, the Princess Royal came 24th in the individual eventing and the team came ninth.

The team's success yesterday came despite Zara admitting "I messed up" after a disappointing round in the showjumping - but her team-mates came to the rescue to ensure the silver medal.

"We wanted the gold but to get an Olympic medal is incredible anyway," Zara said.

"When you get one of these put round your neck, it brings it back to you and you realise everything was worth it."

There was disappointment in the canoe slalom for world number one and Beijing silver medallist David Florence, who crashed out.

Ireland's Chloe Magee also bowed out of the women's singles badminton competition despite a superb performance against former world number two Pi Hongyan.

As the rain fell on spectators yesterday, Games organiser Locog said more than two million people turned out to watch the first three days of competition. …

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