JASON and Laura Kenny led Team GB's Olympic heroes today as they touched back down in the UK after making history at Tokyo 2020.
Cycling's golden couple stood at the top of the British Airways plane's steps as airline staff applauded and waved Union flags.
And boxing hero Galal Yafai – who took a dominant gold in the flyweight final – was lifted up into the air by his team mate as he arrived at Heathrow.
Also among the athletes touching down this afternoon were Kate Archibald, who won madison gold with Laura Kenny, gold medal-winning modern pentathlete Joseph Choong, and golden girl boxer Lauren Price.
A large number of Team GB's athletes weren't on the flight as they had to leave Tokyo's Olympic Village within 48 hours of their last event, because of Covid restrictions.
Among those who had to head home early were diving legend Tom Daley and Britain's youngest ever medallist Sky Brown, who claimed skateboarding bronze at the age of just 13.
Team GB came home 4th in the medals table, taking 22 golds, 21 silvers and 22 bronzes.
The tally of 65 medals equals the heroics of Team GB at London 2012, and was two medals short of the 67 we won in Rio five years ago.
The Kennys continued their dominance of the velodrome out in Japan, and became Britain's top male and female Olympians of all time.
Jason won gold in a thrilling keirin final on the last day of the Games.
The 33-year-old also bagged a silver in the men's team sprint.
These successes take his number of Olympic medals to NINE, including seven golds dating back to Beijing 2008.
That seventh gold took him clear of Sir Chris Hoy as Britain's greatest ever Olympian.
Laura, meanwhile, added a fifth gold medal to her collection – dating back to London 2012.
And she also obtained a silver in the women's team pursuit, taking her medal count to six.
Her tally now makes her Britain's most accomplished ever female Olympian.
She was also deservedly bestowed the honour of being Team GB's flag bearer at the Closing Ceremony.
It hasn’t quite sunk in. All I know is that I’ve worked so hard to be here
Upon receiving the responsibility, she said: "The past 18 months have been tough for everyone, and I really hope me and my Team GB teammates have given the nation something to celebrate.
"It hasn’t quite sunk in. All I know is that I’ve worked so hard to be here — but I couldn’t have done it without the support of my family, friends and everyone at British Cycling."
Team GB won 65 medals in total in Tokyo – the same number as they managed at home in London in 2012.
After his keirin success, Jason Kenny said: "I have been disappointed I haven’t been as competitive as I wanted to be. But in the keirins, you can race hard and ride your luck.
"I had all but given up, I was counting my career in days and races as opposed to years — but maybe I have bought myself more time now."
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Meanwhile Chef de Mission Mark England branded Tokyo as 'the greatest achievement' given the hardships faced because of the pandemic.
He said: “The team has made history on the back of the most complex and most challenging environment that we will face, certainly in my lifetime.
"It has been against all the odds and I think it is the greatest achievement in British Olympic history. It has been the miracle of Tokyo and it has been wonderful to be here."
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