It is a shame the title has been taken by someone else because "the Duke of Edinburgh" has just the right ring to it.
It is hard to find enough apt superlatives to describe superpowered Scot Sir Chris Hoy, who pedalled his way into the record books yesterday by scooping his sixth Olympic gold medal, to overtake even Sir Steve Redgrave's record haul.
The 36-year old did it the hard way, producing a burst of extraordinary exertion in the last few metres of the men's keirin that must have hurt a lot, in order to get past the German Max Levy on the line. It is a moment of ferocious speed that will go down in sporting history as one of the defining moments of London 2012, the climax to days of "velodrama" for British cycling. Having given his all, he succumbed to tears and cried like a baby throughout the medal ceremony.
We are indeed fortunate in Scotland to have two such prodigious sporting superstars to inspire a new generation in the run-up to the Commonwealth Games. However, as he confirmed last night, though he hopes to compete in Glasgow 2014, this will be the speed king's last Olympics. He can surely rest on his laurels, having been declared the most successful British Olympian of all time.
Sir Chris is a reminder that arrogance is not a requirement for success. Here is a competitor who always had time for others. And while other athletes boasted of being certainties for medals, he never took anything for granted, admitting to moments of self-doubt after injuries and setbacks. Typically, yesterday he again shrugged off his achievement, and refused to make claims to matching, let alone surpassing, Redgrave's rowing achievements: "I don't think what he has achieved will ever be bettered because he did it in five consecutive Games, in such a physically demanding sport." (As if track cycling is any less so.) The Herald's chief sports writer, Hugh MacDonald, wrote of the way "the motif of his professional life has been success leavened by humility". Last night, before he even mounted the podium, his first thanks were to "the hundred guys working away behind me", in his support team.
There have been some rather limp attempts to make political capital out of Team GB's success, either to emphasise the interdependence of team members from different parts of the UK, or in talk of Scotland outperforming other parts of the Union. The success of Hoy and Andy Murray shows up the futility and irrelevance of such exercises. Here are two men who live and train in England but who are clearly comfortable with both their Scottish and British identities. Sir Chris, proud standard bearer of Team UK at the opening ceremony and clearly moved by the National Anthem as he stood on the podium, had also made sure his parents had packed their special "Real McHoy" banner featuring two Saltires.
For the future, we must hope that these two sporting heroes will encourage Scots to fight the battle of the bulge by picking up a racket or getting on their bikes. Meanwhile, let us just enjoy the moment. Sweet dreams are made of this.
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