In Athens 2004, Durex donated 130,000 condoms “to smooth the performance of the world's elite sports people in the arena and under the covers”. All of which oils the reputation of the village as some kind of sex-crazed Woodstock for athletes. According ...
Monday 18 July 2016 15.52Â BST
Last modified on Monday 18 July 2016 22.00Â BST
Seventeen days, 10,500 athletes, 33 venues, and 450,000 condoms. Thatâ€™s how many camisinhas (little shirts in Brazilian slang) are being supplied by the International Olympics Committee for the 2016 Rio Summer Games. Forty-two per athlete, to be specific, which, even by Olympic standards, is a hell of a lot.
Related: Australian Olympians to be given Zika virus-proof condoms at Rio Games
Welcome to the most promiscuous Olympics in history. The provision of 350,000 condoms, 100,000 female condoms and 175,000 packets of lubricant for Rioâ€™s Olympic Village â€“ the usual mix of ripped athletes, condos, shops, bars, clubs and, erm, McDonaldâ€™s - is three times higher than the London 2012 allowance of 150,000 condoms, which prompted tabloids to dub it â€œthe raunchiest games everâ€.
â€œIt is an absolutely huge allocation of condoms,â€ admits Olympic rowing gold and silver medallist Zac Purchase, who retired from rowing in 2014 and competed in London and Beijing. â€œBut it is all so far from the truth of what itâ€™s like to be in there. Itâ€™s not some sexualised cauldron of activity. Weâ€™re talking about athletes who are focused on producing the best performance of their lives.â€
So why do they need 450,000 condoms? The record-breaking allocation for Rio is reported to be so high because female condoms are being given away for the first time. The Zika virus, which has spread across Brazil and dominated Olympic discussions, is not being given as a reason but British athletes have been issued with key guidance and the Australian team will arrive armed with antiviral condoms to provide extra protection.
Related: Safe sex at London 2012: 'the only Olympic sport with no medals'
The latex count began in Seoul in 1988, when 8,500 condoms were distributed to athletes and reports of condoms found on the roofs of Olympic residences led the Olympic Association to ban outdoor sex. Since then, the number of condoms provided has jumped around more than a gold-medal gymnast: 90,000 to Barcelona in 1992 and an almost prudish 15,000 by comparison to Atlanta in 1996. In Sydney 2000, Australian organisers ordered 70,000 condoms but a further 20,000 were brought in when they ran out halfway through the Games. In Athens 2004, Durex donated 130,000 condoms â€œto smooth the performance of the worldâ€™s elite sports people in the arena and under the coversâ€.
All of which oils the reputation of the village as some kind of sex-crazed Woodstock for athletes. According to gold medal-winning Australian target shooter Mark Russell, it is â€œthe most testosterone fuelled place on earthâ€. In London 2012, Grindr crashed as athletes arrived, and at Sochi 2014, a female Olympic gold snowboarder noted that â€œTinder in the Olympic Village is next levelâ€. After Beijing 2008, an Olympic table-tennis player divulged the secrets of the â€œsex festâ€ and the â€œvolcanic release of pent-up hedonismâ€ that apparently happens when thousands of athletes at the top of their game come together. (To which you may wonder â€¦ arenâ€™t they too knackered?) â€œItâ€™s a calm place during the competition,â€ Purchase insists. And afterwards? â€œThere is a lot of celebration, but itâ€™s very controlled.â€
This article was amended on 18 July to correct an editing error.
Olympic Games 2016,Olympic Games,Sport,Sex,Life and style