GB Olympic homecoming: All the details of the 'victORIOus' plane and what happened on board

'victoRIOus' aircraft brings Team GB athletes home

Team GB athletes have arrived home in style

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Team GB returned home this morning, after travelling on a British Airways flight which was meticulously planned to provide a hero's homecoming.

In recognition of its unique cargo, the plane, a Boeing 747-400, had been renamed 'victoRIOus' in a Twitter poll. The hashtag #greattobeBACK, which proved popular with both fans and athletes, was emblazoned on the side of the aircraft and its nose was even painted gold - a reflection of the fact that Team GB won 27 gold medals and 67 medals in total.

Those medals weighed a total of 46kg, quite a weight when you consider that the homecoming party comprised 320 athletes and support staff. Naturally BA wheeled out the daddy of its aircraft fleet for the task - the 747-400 is capable of carrying 660 passengers and supporting a takeoff weight of over 400 tonnes.

During the flight the athletes were given a three-course meal featuring a plethora of gourmet options, including gaucho-style beef tenderloin with kale and tomato, grilled salmon and ginger-infused noodle salad and chicken in a white wine sauce. Not exactly your usual 'chicken or fish' in-flight choice. 

This morning athletes were treated to a full English breakfast with tea, to finish off their flight. Extra water, champagne, snacks and treats were also included throughout, for those athletes who wanted to indulge themselves after the pain and sacrifice of the Olympics.

On-board entertainment included highlights from the Games, and over 1,300 hours of films, top TV shows and audio programmes. The viewing options included sporting documentaries such as Sporting Greats; Sir Steve Redgrave, Back on Board: Greg Louganis, as well as the film Chariots of Fire.

Fans were able to view the plane landing online, as well as track its movements.

Upon landing the new British Airways i360 on Brighton seafront was lit up in gold to mark the occasion, and the plane will be used again to bring Paralympians home in September.