Princes William and Harry praise Olympic 'buzz'
- 3 August 2012
- From the section UK
Princes William and Harry have spoken of the "inspiration" provided by the Olympic Games and praised the "amazing" support of the British public.
As Olympic ambassadors, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Harry have been a constant presence at the Games.
"The support of the British public is something else," Harry told the BBC. "The buzz... is astonishing."
The princes added that they had been "kept in the dark" about the Queen's role in the opening ceremony.
In the relaxed and light-hearted interview at the BBC's Olympic Park studio on Friday afternoon, William said: "It's been fantastic to see the volunteers going around with a smile on their face, greeting people and doing such a good job.
"Of course, it would be unfair of me not to mention the military. I think they've been fantastic and everywhere we've gone they've looked extremely smart and like they've enjoyed themselves.
"They've obviously been doing their job extremely well," said the prince, himself a Royal Air Force search and rescue helicopter pilot.
Harry told presenter Sue Barker: "The support from the British public is something else. We've had the chance to be at quite a few of the events, and just to feel the buzz of the British public getting behind the teams is astonishing."
The brothers said they were "very proud" of their cousin Zara Phillips' silver medal in the equestrian events.
Harry said she had been working "so hard" to get to where she had got to, adding: "We as cousins are very, very proud, it now explains why we never get to see her because she is always riding."
Asked what their favourite moments were, William said Phillips' medal was the most emotional and most involved for him because of the personal connection.
But he also praised "unsung stars" who have had their "massive moment", such as Etienne Stott and Tim Baillie, who took gold in the canoe slalom on Thursday.
"That was absolutely fantastic, we were glued to the television... watching that. The noise was incredible, seeing them jump into the water and swim around with the team I think was such a release for them."
He continued: "I think the velodrome last night with Sir Chris Hoy, that was absolutely fantastic, the world records being beaten and the atmosphere in there was electric."
There was also a "kiss cam" going around the velodrome crowd picking out couples, William added. "I was absolutely dreading they were going to come and show myself and my wife and that would have been very embarrassing."
Queen's 'Bond role'
In the exclusive BBC interview, the princes also revealed they knew nothing of the Queen's role in the opening ceremony when she appeared in a short film with James Bond actor Daniel Craig.
"Both of us were slightly surprised with our grandmother's secret hobby of parachuting," said Harry, referring to the scene where the Queen rode on a helicopter before appearing to dive into the Olympic Stadium.
William added: "We were kept completely in the dark about it, that's how big the secret was.
"Harry got a sniff of a rumour on the night and the rumour mill was going into overdrive but in fact she did such a good performance that she's been asked to star in the next Bond film. I'm thrilled for her."
Prince Harry, who is president of the School Games, said the Olympics would be hugely important in encouraging young people into sport.
"This Olympics more than any other I think is huge inspirationally for the next generation and the generations beyond as well," he said.
"It's great to see, just looking out of this window now, the thousands of people strolling past, most people with kids.
"The Games should be a chance to get people out and for ourselves trying to encourage children to do the whole sporting activity thing rather than sitting in front of the TV and playing computer games is hugely important".
The brothers joked about Harry's "race" with Usain Bolt when visiting Jamaica earlier this year, although the younger prince went on to praise the sprinter's positive effect on the island's youngsters.
"There's kids back in Jamaica now who started running or doing track events simply because they look up to him," he said.
"They look up to this giant man who shouldn't be good at sprinting because he's too tall, but he's a wonderful example for his country, for the nation, for the world."
The prince admitted he has a "very small" share in a racehorse called Usain Colt, but said he was "still young, and still coming along".