Team GB’s athletes at the Olympic Games this summer will be powered by 45,000 teabags, more than 7,000 bags of crisps and nearly 8,000 porridge pots, the Guardian can reveal.
More than 50 Brompton bikes are also being shipped to Tokyo to help athletes get around the Olympic village and keep their legs fresh, while “games packs” consisting of Connect 4, Jenga, Dobble and playing cards will being provided to keep them occupied in their Covid-secure bubbles at the Games.
The items, which were provided by sponsors such as Aldi and Dreams, were all packed on to a large cargo ship in February – along with performance equipment, such as boxing bags and judo mats, and nearly a thousand mattress toppers, pillows, pillowcases, and blankets. The ship will shortly arrive in Tokyo after a 55-day journey.
Meanwhile despite the difficulties caused by the pandemic, Team GB’s chef de mission, Mark England, insisted that preparations were going “very well” with 100 days left. He confirmed he expected there would be more women than men in the British team for the first time.
“Team GB will be around 370 athletes strong, and we are still on course to qualify more women than men which is a brilliant opportunity for us to make history in Tokyo and will hopefully be a source of great inspiration for women and girls back at home,” said England. “We have every confidence that we are going to take a very strong team to the Games, which I believe will be a unique and special chance to celebrate sport and humanity globally.”
The British Olympic Association said it would have a set of health measures that would go beyond those being asked of it by the International Olympic Committee and Tokyo organisers to ensure the safety of its athletes, staff and the Japanese public. They include using a sanitising product that will be applied to lift buttons and doors in Team GBs training camps and the Olympic village. The BOA said the product “continuously cleans itself and kills biological matter, providing the same cleanliness as surfaces cleaned with bleach and other disinfectants for six months”.