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Record audiences tune in to BBC's online Olympics coverage

LONDON - While Becky Adlington broke the record for the 800 metres freestyle world record at the Beijing Olympics, record numbers of sports fans have been tuning in to the BBC's online coverage of events.

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Just shy of 3m page impressions were made on BBC Sport Online's live video coverage on Saturday, August 16, an increase of over 2m on the previous weekend record set for the opening ceremony on August 8.

On Sunday 2.4m page impressions were received by the site with 870,000 unique users tuning in each day.

Last Monday (August 11) saw 4.4m unique users on BBC Sport Online, the highest ever daily audience, beating the previous best of 3.9m. There were 697,400 requests to stream or download programmes, relating to the Olympics over the week ending August 17.

In the US, NBC's online coverage of the Olympics has also been hugely popular, drawing in 25m users in its first week -- more viewers than the whole of the Athens Olympic online coverage attracted.

Great Britain's rash of gold medal wins at the Beijing Olympics has seen almost two-thirds of the viewing public tune in to watch coverage on television at some point during the coverage.

While 500,000 patriots managed to stay up until 3am for the live broadcast of Adlington's second gold medal win, the biggest television audience was reserved not for a British competitor, but for Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt's world record-breaking 100m win on Saturday.

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