Poor weather could force OIympics officials to reschedule some events

Martin Rogers
Yahoo! Sports

LONDON – Olympic Games organizers have drawn up a contingency plan to reschedule some events at London 2012 after weather forecasters predicted an influx of rain for the rest of the week.

Games officials were thankful to have avoided heavy rains during last Friday's Opening Ceremony, with some brief showers passing quickly and rain clouds narrowly missing the main stadium.

The weather, however, is expected to get worse from Tuesday onward, and a spokesman for the Met Office – Britain’s official weather and climate recording service – told Yahoo! Sports that hopes of a rain-free Games are certain to be dashed.

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"Conditions are quite changeable, which means there will be both sunshine and showers on most days," spokesman Alex Fox said. "It is also going to be quite breezy and there will be showers coming in from the west."

Britain's weather curse has hit at the worst possible time, with the latest predicted rain adding only to a long deluge that means the country is headed for its wettest summer since official records began in 1910. London's organizing committee for the Games hopes to ensure no events are unfairly disrupted and is working with the Met Office to determine where, when and how heavily the worst of the rain will fall. Options such as delaying some sessions have been considered if the weather situation is considered to be extreme.

Sailing, which is staged on the south coast of England in Weymouth, and the rowing regatta at Eton Dorney, are a couple events where the elements could play an especially significant role.

"We provide the information and then it is up to the organizing committee as to what they do to plan around the meteorological parameters that we give them," Fox said.

The first Saturday of the Olympics brought sweltering temperatures, but the weather took a turn for the worse at the beginning of the week and a cold front is likely to arrive.

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One of the bigger concerns will center on the start of the track and field competition later this week. The Olympic Stadium in Stratford has only a partial roof.

"A strong breeze and chill made me wonder if you can actually call it the 'Summer' Olympics," veteran Indian journalist S. Kannan said.

When London bid in 2005 to host these Games, rival cities including Paris tried to use the British weather as ammunition to bolster their own bids. London convinced the IOC members with historical weather data that showed the period of July and August during which the Games are being staged is normally relatively dry.

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