PHOTOS & VIDEOS
The Olympic flame lights a cauldron made of 204 copper pots (each representing nations in the Games) during the Opening Ceremony at the 2012 London Games, on July 28. The event kicks off two weeks of Olympic sports competition. Click through this slide show to see ongoing sports highlights.
Kazakhstan's Alexandr Vinokurov celebrates winning gold in the men's cycling road race competition, on July 28. An estimated million spectators watched the 250-kilometer (152.5 miles) race from the sidelines, which started and finished at The Mall in front of Buckingham Palace in London.
U.S.A.'s Ryan Lochte swims to a gold medal in the men's 400-meter individual medley final, on July 28. It was the U.S.'s first gold medal of the London Games. Brazil's Thiago Pereira and Japan's Kosuke Hagino took silver and bronze. American Michael Phelps, who won the event at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, came in fourth.
U.S.A.'s Brady Ellison, the reigning world champion archer, shoots an arrow in the team archery competition, on July 28. Ellison, with teammates Jacob Wukie and Jake Kaminski, finished with silver. Italian archers Marco Galiazzo, Michele Frangilli and Mauro Nespoli won Italy's first-ever team gold in the event.
Feat of Strength
China's Wang Mingjuan, a four-time world champion, competes during her first Olympics in the women's 48-kilogram (about 106 pounds) weightlifting competition, on July 28. Wang won gold in the event after lifting a total of 205 kilograms (about 452 pounds). Japan's Hiromi Miyake earned silver, and North Korea's Ryang Chun Hwa took bronze.
Synching for Silver
U.S.A.'s Abigail Johnston and Kelci Bryant dive during the three meter synchronized springboard final, on July 29. The diving duo won the silver medal in the event—U.S.A's first medal in Olympic diving since the 2000 Sydney Games. China's He Zi and Wu Minxia won gold, with Canada's Emilie Heymans and Jennifer Abel earning bronze.
U.S.A.'s 17-year-old swim star Missy Franklin celebrates her first Olympic gold medal for the women's 100-meter backstroke event, on July 30. The teenager, nicknamed "Missy the Missile," wowed spectators with her endurance by winning the race just 10 minutes after qualifying in the 200-freestyle semifinal events.
The British gymnastic team—from left: Sam Oldham, Kristian Thomas, Max Whitlock, Louis Smith and Daniel Purvis—celebrate winning an Olympic bronze in the gymnastics men's team finals, on July 30. It was the host country's first Olympic medal in the men's team event since 1912. The Chinese team took gold for a second straight Olympics, while Japan took silver.
Germany's Michael Jung, riding horse Sam, competes in individual eventing during the equestrian competition, on July 31. The world champion won the gold medal in eventing, which combines dressage, cross-country and jumping. It was just one of the victories for the German equestrian team that day. Jung's teammate Sandra Auffarth earned bronze in the same event. The Germans also took home team eventing gold.
The U.S. women's gymnasts team--from left: McKayla Maroney, Kyla Ross, Alexandra Raisman, Gabrielle Douglas and Jordyn Wieber--hold up their gold medals from the women's team final, on July 31. The Fab Five earned the first Olympic team gold for American women since 1996. Russia and Romania settled for silver and bronze.
Most Decorated Olympian
U.S. swimmer Michael Phelps displays his record 19th Olympic medal, making him the most decorated Olympian of all time. Phelps earned the gold in the 4 x 200-meter freestyle relay final on July 31, with the help of teammates Ryan Lochte, Conor Dwyer and Ricky Berens. The medal record was previously held by former Soviet Union gymnast Larisa Latynina.
China's Lei Sheng (right) scores points against Egypt's Alaaeldin Abouelkassem during the men's foil individual final, on July 31. Sheng went on to win gold, beating his opponent 15 to 13. Abouelkassem, who fought with an arm injury, earned silver, making him the first fencer from Africa ever to win an Olympic medal.
Home Team Victory
Britain's Heather Stanning (left) and Helen Glover celebrate after finishing first in the women's pair rowing final, on August 1. They are Britain's first ever female rowers to win an Olympic title. They also earned the host country it's first gold of the London 2012 Games. Not bad, considering Glover had never rowed before 2008. It continued to be a golden day for Britain, as Tour de France winner Bradley Wiggins later won gold in the cycling time trial, becoming the country's most decorated Olympian, with a total of seven medals.
World Champion Gymnast
Japan's Kohei Uchimura performs on the rings during the men's gymnastics individual all-around competition, on August 1. The three-time world champion—considered by many to be the greatest male gymnast ever—claimed his first Olympic gold medal in the event. Germany's Marcel Nguyen took the silver medal, while U.S. gymnast Danell Leyva moved up from 19th place during the competition to win the bronze.
Gold by a Fingertip
U.S. swimmer Nathan Adrian celebrates winning gold in the men's 100-meter freestyle final, on August 1. Adrian, who previously won a relay gold at the 2008 Beijing Games, finished the race just .01 seconds (one-hundredth of a second) ahead of Australian swim star James Magnussen, who was favored to win the title. Magnussen settled for silver, while Canada's Brent Hayden took bronze
U.S. gymnast Gabrielle Douglas, 16, flies above the balance beam during the women's individual all-around final, on August 2. She earned gold in the competition. Douglas is the first African-American gymnast to win the Olympic all-around title, gymnastic's top honor. She's also the first U.S. gymnast to win both team and all-around gold medals in a single Olympic Games. Russia's Victoria Komova finished second for the silver. Russia's Aliya Mustafina and U.S.A.'s Aly Raisman had tied scores for third place, but a tiebreaker gave the bronze medal to Mustafina.
The U.S. women's eight rowing team throws Mary Whipple, their coxswain (the person in charge of directing rowers in the boat), into the water as they celebrate their Olympic gold medals, on August 2. Whipple and rowers Caryn Davies, Caroline Lind, Eleanor Logan, Meghan Musnicki, Taylor Ritzel, Esther Lofgren, Zsuzsanna Francia and Erin Cafaro won the U.S. it's second straight Olympic gold in the women's eight final. They finished a half-length ahead of the Canadian team, who earned silver. The bronze medal went to a crew from the Netherlands.
American swimmer Rebecca Soni, 25, competes in the women's 200-meter breaststroke final, on August 2. Soni won the gold medal and set a new world record in the event, finishing in 2 minutes, 19.59 seconds. She beat the world record she had just set the day before in the semifinal round of the event. The gold was Soni's second medal of the London Games. She also earned silver in the 100-meter breaststroke.
U.S. athlete Kayla Harrison celebrates earning gold in the women's 78 kilogram (about 172 pounds) judo final, on August 2. Harrison, 22, is the first American ever to win an Olympic gold medal in judo. She beat Britain's Gemma Gibbons in the final match, giving Gibbons the silver medal. Two bronze medals went to France's Audrey Tcheumeo and Brazil's Mayra Aguiar
U.S. swimmer Katie Ledecky, 15, reacts after finishing first for the gold in the women's 800-meter freestyle final, on August 3. Ledecky, who is the youngest member of the U.S. swim team, beat second-place finisher Mireia Belmonte Garcia of Spain by an impressive 4.13 seconds. Britain's Rebecca Adlington, the defending champion of the event, took bronze.