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Olympic heroes are touched by support
The Brownlee brothers have revealed the wide-ranging perks of life as Olympic medallists – from city-centre receptions to receiving a pensioner’s money through the post.
The Bramhope pair became the first British siblings to stand on the same Olympic podium in more than a century when Alistair won the triathlon ahead of younger brother Jonny in third. In the days since, they have been blown away by well-wishers from across the country.
Thousands of fans turned up to welcome them home at a parade at Millennium Square in Leeds, while they have been regularly stopped on their return to training at their home village of Bramhope.
But it was a letter from a pensioner that Alistair admits has touched him the most.
“Everyone has been great and really friendly,” he said.
“People have been stopping us when we go out training and congratulating us, and telling us how proud they were of us. It is really nice – it makes you feel great.
“The best message we’ve had, though, was actually an 89-year-old man who sent us a letter in the post. He wrote that he had watched us and that it was one of the best things he had ever seen in his life.
“He also included a tenner for both of us, and said that he wasn’t putting his name or address on it so that we couldn’t send it back.
“I don’t know what I’m going to do with it yet. I’ve been so busy with media and everything else since, that I haven’t had a chance to do anything with it. I’ve had that in one pocket and my gold medal in the other.”
Both brothers have had little time to dwell on their Olympic success, with Alistair due to fly to America for a triathlon next month, while Jonny will compete in Stockholm this week.
“It’s been pretty hectic since. We’ve only had a brief chance to see our parents,” said Alistair, who, along with his brother, supports the nationwide grass-roots campaign ‘Join In Local Sport’. To find out what events are happening near you, simply go to the Join In website – joininuk.org – and enter your postcode.
Jonny admitted to life after the Olympics as a “massive comedown”, with the 22-year-old having to sort the details of his move into a new house since arriving back from London.
- Vandals have defaced a tribute to Olympic star Alistair Brownlee.
The postbox in New Road Side, Horsforth, was painted gold to celebrate the success of triathlete gold medalist Alistair, who grew up in the town with his family.
But the tribute has attracted the attention of vandals, who have painted graffiti on the postbox.
Their action “beggars belief”, according to Horsforth councillor, Chris Townsley.
“It is absolutely appalling,” he said. “They are mindless people who just want to spoil a good thing.
“My grandson has had his picture taken next to it like hundreds of people. But these vandals just want to come along and spoil other people’s enjoyment. I don’t know what they get out of it.”
Royal Mail has said it will repair the damage as soon as possible.