Queen greets Olympic torch at Windsor Castle
LONDON: It was a banner day for the Olympic torch: It visited the queen at Windsor Castle, was carried by the man who broke the 4-minute mile and by Britain's greatest Olympic rower and even got a passing glance at a streaker.
On a stormy Tuesday, Queen Elizabeth II held an unopened umbrella as Gina Macgregor, a sodden 74-year-old runner, carried the torch to the castle. Macgregor joked about being caught in downpour, telling the monarch she had "looked fine this morning" when she set off with the fire that was lit back in May in Greece to mark the London Olympics.
The day began with the torch being held aloft by 83-year-old Roger Bannister, who in 1954 became the first runner to smash the 4-minute mile.
A naked man with 'Free Tibet' written on his back also streaked past crowds just before former rower Steve Redgrave got the torch in Henley, 35 miles (55 kilometers) to the west of London. Redgrave, 50, won gold medals at five consecutive Olympics.
Police said later Tuesday that Daniel Leer, 27, was charged with indecent exposure for the stunt and released on bail.
The torch is winding its way 8,000 miles (12,900 kilometers) across the country ahead of the July 27-Aug. 12 Olympics. Organizers say the flame should come within 10 miles (16 kilometers) of 95 percent of the U.K.'s population.
Police have warned spectators to stay away from the flame as it travels across Britain and Ireland and incidents of people interfering with its journey have been rare so far — unlike for the 2008 Beijing Olympic torch relay. In fact, the torch has attracted large crowds in communities across the country.--(AP)
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