Games to go out with a bang
Sydney Olympics are to go out with a bang - a low-flying
fighter bomber is to ignite a massive plume of flame and
one million people will be treated to one of the world's
most spectacular firework displays.
when you get to the end of an Olympic Games, there is
a feeling that the whole thing is over and we are all
going home," said Ignatius Jones, artistic director
of Sunday's extravaganza.
in Sydney. We are going out with a bang," he promised.
F-111 fighter bomber is to "dump and burn" its
fuel at 1,000 feet (300 metres) above Stadium Australia,
scene of the closing ceremony where the athletes will
enjoy a giant "backyard party" and be serenaded
by pop star Kylie Minogue.
fighter bomber's dramatic flight will be the signal for
24 "lightning shells" to explode like giant
flashbulbs all the way down the Parramatta River to downtown
Sydney where another F-111 will light up the sky over
the Harbour Bridge.
is being dubbed "the river of lightning".
in a dig at London's "river of fire" that proved
a damp squib on Millennium night in Britain, said: "It
will be very different from the river of fire on the Thames
in that it will work."
night sky will then be ablaze with fireworks that have
a truly international flavour - pyrotechnical experts
from Spain, Japan, the United States and South Africa
are all contributing to the explosion of light.
has promised the display will be bigger and better than
Sydney's Millennium celebrations which ranked as one of
the most breathtaking on the night that saw in the new
will dwarf anything we have done before," he said
of the fireworks that will be set off from four giant
barges, 10 smaller boats and the rooftops of downtown
loves to party and organisers expect up to one million
people will pack the best vantage points around the harbour
to see the 23-minute show that will consume A$3 milion
($1.7 million) worth of fireworks.
Harbour Bridge, Sydney's most beloved landmark along with
the Opera House, will be the centrepiece of the festivities.
pyrotechnical waterfall in the colours of the Olympic
rings is to cascade off the bridge to signal the end of
the display and the start of a night of non-stop partying
for a city revelling in the praise heaped on the Millennium
1996-2000 SOCOG and IBM. All rights reserved.
Games go out with a spectacular bang
Olympic Games ended with a bang on Sunday as a fighter
bomber set the night sky ablaze with a plume of flame
and a spectacular cascade of fireworks lit up Sydney Harbour
least one million people packed the harbourside for what
was hailed as one of the biggest pyrotechnic extravaganzas
the world has ever seen.
dowtown followed the Olympic closing party at Stadium
Australia, where 110,000 spectators and thousands of athletes
felt the heat as earlier another F-111 fighter bomber
flew over trailing a 30 metre ribbon of flame.
Bridge, one of Australia's most potent icons, was the
centrepiece of a A$3 million ($1.7 million) firework display
that put in the shade the New Year celebrations that heralded
the start of a new millennium.
brought in firework experts from five continents to give
the five Olympic rings on the bridge a breathtaking send-off.
two parties at Olympic Park and by the harbour were linked
by a "river of lightning" that illuminated the
was a breathtaking climax for a fun-loving city that has
revelled in the most successful Olympics ever staged.
am proud and happy to proclaim that you have presented
to the world the best Olympic Games ever", Olympic
chief Juan Antonio Samaranch, presiding over his last
Games in 20 years at the helm, declared to a sports-mad
Australia fiercely proud of what it had achieved.
you, all the people of Sydney and Australia, we say: These
have been your Games," said Samaranch, whose Olympics
were tinged with tragedy when his wife died as he was
flying home to Spain to be at her bedside.
success helped redeem the tarnished image of an International
Olympic Committee (IOC) still smarting from the cronyism
and corruption exposed in the bidding for the 2002 Salt
Lake City Winter Games.
sullied the sporting spectacular with seven athletes testing
positive for drugs in competition. But the IOC hailed
their exposure as a new "zero tolerance" attitude
Stadium Australia, war, politics and the divisions of
nations were forgotten as they had been at so many Olympics
since Melbourne in 1956 when athletes first streamed together
into the closing ceremony rather than as national teams.
athletes, letting their hair down after the rigours of
competition, poured into the arena from every corner for
the biggest backyard party in the history of Australia.
were treated to a show of Australian icons from pop star
Kylie Minogue and golfer Greg Norman to drag queens in
all their finery and a country and a western singalong
of the country's unofficial anthem "Waltzing Matilda".
Games have helped to staunch old wounds in a young nation
and to forge a cohesive identity out of an Australian
melting pot of immigrants from all across the globe.
sprinter Cathy Freeman, a potent symbol of Australia's
disadvantaged minority, lit the Olympic cauldron at the
start of the Games and then ignited the nation with an
electric triumph in the women's 400 metres.
Sartor, mayor of a city that has partied round the clock
since the Games began, handed over the five-ring Olympic
flag to Mayor Dimitri Avramopoulos of Athens where the
Summer Olympics move in 2004.
will be a hard act to follow after unprecedented ticket
sales, television broadcast to a record 220 countries
and a glitch-free Games that unfolded as smoothly as organisers
had ever dared to dream. It was truly a night to party.
1 (repeated below)
falls on 'best ever' Games
International Olympic Committee president Juan Antonio
Samaranch has declared Sydney's Olympic Games the "best
Embracing the Australian humour that has surrounded the
Games, Samaranch led the capacity crowd in a rendition
of the now famous chant,"Aussie, Aussie, Aussie,
Oi, Oi, Oi."
The ceremony began with a mock situation, involving a
lawnmower wreaking havoc across the Olympic Stadium, interfering
with official proceedings.
The crowd clapped and laughed as the out-of-control lawnmower
crashed into a podium, knocking Olympic officials to the
The official celebrations were kicked off by Christine
Anu, who performed her hit song "Island Home"
atop an enormous globe surrounded by a sea of iridescent
stars across the stadium field.
The flag barriers for the competing nations then entered
the stadium ahead of athletes from 199 nations.
Three times gold medallist and silver medallist Ian Thorpe
carried the flag for Australia.
The athletes quickly joined in the party atmosphere, cheering
and dancing as Australia's top-selling band, Savage Garden
performed in front of the capacity crowd.
Mr Samaranch closed the Games with the traditional invitation
to the world's youth to reassemble in four years for the
next Olympics, to be staged in Athens.
Presiding over his last Olympics before stepping down
next year, Samaranch praised the Sydney Games as "the
best ever", an accolade traditionally bestowed on
host cities of Summer Games but one he refused to bestow
on the much criticised Atlanta Games of four years ago.
Mr Samaranch, whose wife died during the Sydney Games,
echoed the widely-held view that the 27th Olympiad has
been a spectacular success in his closing speech.
The outging president made a light-hearted reference to
his announcement seven years ago that Sydney had beaten
off opposition from Beijing to stage the 2000 pageant.
"Seven years ago I said 'and the winner is Sydney',"
"Well what can I say now?"
In his closing remarks, Samaranch recognised the influence
of Australia's Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities
in creating Olympic history.
"You have helped to write a glorious chapter in the
history of Australia," he said.
The mayor of Athens Dimitris Avramapoulos and the president
of the Athen's Olympic Organising Committee, Gianna Angelopoulos-Daskalaki
were invited onto the stage by Samaranch to accept the
They were joined by the priestesses of Olympia, the custodians
of the Olympic tradition, who then carried the flag from
Following the singing of the Greek and Australian national
anthems, the Greek national flag was raised and Samaranch
in accordance with tradition invited the world to Athens
in four years time.
"I call upon the youth of the world to assemble,
four years from now, in Athens, Greece, birthplace of
the Olympian, to celebrate with us, the Games of the 28th
Olympiad," he said, declaring the Games officially
Star of the opening ceremony, Nicky Webster sang 'We'll
be one' as an RAAF F-111 thundered overhead with after-burners
ablaze, symbolically extinguishing the cauldron.
As the flame went out, the party went on.
And while the curtain raiser to the Sydney Games avoided
all the Aussie cliches, the closing party played on every
one - inflatable kangaroos, ballroom dancing, drag queens
and beer swilling Aussies.
Pop newcomer Vanessa Amorosi kicked the party into full
swing, descending onto the field in a silver cage singing
her hit song "Absolutely everybody".
Over 1,000 ballroom dancers in fluorescent costumes moved
onto the field to the rhythms of "Love is in the
air" and athletes danced away in the centre of
the arena, linking up to do a giant conga around the field.
One of Australia's most successful bands, INXS, now featuring
John Stevens, made its return to the world arena singing
"What you need" as the stage transformed
into a giant barbecue.
Jimmy Barnes kept the crowd pumped with his famous song
"Working Class Man" and was followed
by Midnight Oil who reignited the reconciliation theme.
Peter Garrett led the group in an enthusiastic rendition
of their hit song, "Beds are Burning".
Notably, all members of the band wore shirts and pants
emblazoned with the word "sorry".
Earlier, the lead singer of Savage Garden Darren Hayes
wore a shirt with the Aboriginal flag during the band's
Yothu Yindi also performed their land rights anthem "Treaty"
which made a reprise at the end of the evening.
Among the other stars to feature in the parade were supermodel
Elle MacPherson, Paul Hogan, Bananas in Pyjamas and Greg
Norman, who emerged from inside a great white shark swinging
a golf club.
Pop Diva Kylie Minogue, who entered the stadium on top
of a surfboard surrounded by lifeguards, starred in the
closing extravaganza singing twice to the crowd and athletes'
Rock band Men at Work then led the crowd and other entertainers
in a rendition of "Land down under".
Country icon Slim Dusty, with guitar in hand, capped off
the event with "Waltzing Matilda".
The crowd, athletes and other entertainers joined in the
singing as they sky was set alight by the start of what
was a spectacular fireworks display.
Up to one million people packed the city for the spectacular
fireworks display around the Harbour Bridge which eclipsed
Sydney's year celebrations.
Each segment of the display represented each corner of
The fireworks spectacular ended in a blaze of glory as
the Olympic rings on Sydney's Harbour Bridge were set
alight by a golden explosion.
The Bridges' golden glow faded and the sky returned to
darkness, signalling the end to Sydney's Games.
following USA articles mis-identify the F-111 as Royal
Air Force in lieu of Royal Australian Air Force)
YORK POST article
Dump and Burn is the dumping of fuel from a vent between
the engine exhaust cones, where the fuel is ignited by
the heat of the afterburner (reheat).
A great party trick!!
JETS IGNITE CLOSING CEREMONY EXCITEMENT
Public Affairs and Corporate Communication
PACC 272/00 Sunday 1 October , 2000
Royal Australian Air Force lit up Sydney tonight when
two F-111 strike aircraft from RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland
took part in the closing ceremonies of the Sydney 2000
The first jet, crewed by 42-year-old pilot Wing Commander
Dave Steele from Murwillumbah, and navigator 34-year-old
Squadron Leader Geoff Harland from Adelaide, swooped low
over Homebush Bay performing a spectacular 'dump and burn'
to the delight of the crowd in the packed Olympic Stadium.
An hour later, a second jet, crewed by 30-year-old pilot
Flight Lieutenant Andrew Buttsworth from Nambucca Heads,
and navigated by 24-year-old Flying Officer Brad Machan
from Cairns, soared over the Sydney Harbour Bridge trailing
a 200 metre long flaming tail to signal the start of a
massive fireworks display.
The popular 'dump and burn' sequence, performed exclusively
by the Australian F-111s, occurs when jet fuel is dumped,
or released, behind the aircraft and ignited by the massive
twin engine afterburners.
Wing Commander Steele, Commanding Officer No. 6 Squadron,
and pilot of the jet which was seen by billions of television
viewers worldwide watching the Olympic Closing Ceremony,
described it as an exhilarating experience.
"The adrenaline really started pumping when we saw
the stadium lights on our approach run, " he said.
"We came in at low power, then brought in the afterburners
just before we went over the stadium which gives you a
real kick as the extra power comes on.
"Then we activated the dump and fed fuel out the
rear of the aircraft between the two jet exhausts where
it ignited into the long trail. Actually you can't
see the dump and burn trail from the cockpit, just the
orange glow in the sky behind the aircraft."
The F-111 crew members were among thousands of people
who contributed to the Sydney 2000 Olympics finale but
without even touching the ground. The aircrew, all from
No 6 Squadron at Amberley, completed their brief but spectacular
appearance over the Games City and were back at their
home base within hours.
Aircraft: F-111G, operated by No 6 Squadron, RAAF Amberley.
Engines: Two Pratt and Whitney TF-30 turbofans each developing
thrust or 12,400 hp
Airframe: Length 23.0 metres, Height 5.3 metres
Wingspan: 21.3 metres extended, 10.3 metres swept
Weight: 22,725 kg basic, 51,846kg fully loaded
Ceiling: Above 50,000 feet
Speed: Supersonic at sea level up to Mach 2.5 (2500km/h)
Crew: Pilot and Navigator
First flight over Olympic Stadium
Crew: Wing Commander Dave Steele (pilot) 42 of Murwillumbah,
New South Wales
Squadron Leader Geoff Harland (navigator) 34 of Adelaide,
Direction: North to South over centre line of stadium
Altitude: 1000 feet (about 300 m) above stadium climbing
during dump and burn to about 15,000 feet (5000 m)
over Sydney Harbour Bridge
Crew: Flight Andrew Buttsworth (pilot) 30 of Nambucca
Flying Officer Brad Machan (navigator) 24 from Cairns,
Direction: West to East over Bridge
Altitude: 1000 feet (about 300 m) above stadium climbing
during dump and burn to about 15,000 feet (5000 m)
by Public Affairs and Corporate Communications, Department
Victoria Barracks, Petrie Terrace, Brisbane, Qld, 4000
the Tail Number Followers...
Dump and Burn F-111G A8-272 (ex USAF FB-111A 68-272)
Harbour Dump and Burn F-111G A8-271 (ex USAF FB-111A 68-271)