Yesterday, the torch made its way to Windsor Castle, where the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh greeted the Olympic flame. The special torchbearer was none other than Gina Macgregor, a 74-year-old runner who trudged through the rain to make it to the royals. According to reports, the Queen exchanged a few words with Macgregor, wondering about how exactly the torch worked. Afterward, it passed into the hands of 12-year-old Philip Wells.
Former British track athlete Roger Bannister started the day with the torch, before passing it off to Steve Redgrave, a former Olympian and British rower who won five consecutive Olympic Games. Redgrave dramatically rowed across the Thames River with one hand, torch on the other. He expressed his appreciation for being selected the special event to the BBC. “To have my hands on the torch is pretty special. It’s surreal – when I retired in 2000 I was asked to come on to the bid team. What we were working towards were the Games in 2012 and now it’s just 18 days away.”
After passing through the neighborhood of Windsor, it made its way through Egham, Ascot, Bracknell and Reading. By the time the torch reaches the opening ceremony on July 27, a total of 8,000 people will have carried it along its 8,000 mile, 70-day journey.