Olympic Sailing Update

Payne Hicks Beach is sponsoring several members of the British Olympic Sailing Team for the Rio Olympics. Over the years, one or two have dropped out of the programme and the present position is:

  1. Giles Scott: Giles in the heir apparent to Sir Ben Ainslie (the most successful Olympic sailor of all time with a Silver and four Golds from five consecutive Olympics). Giles has not been beaten in an international event for more than two years and was selected for the Finn single handed class several months ago;
  2. In the two man 49er class, the Selectors have postponed selection on the basis of it being a close run thing between Dylan Fletcher/Alain Sign and John Pink/Stu Bithell. PHB sponsors both teams! Dylan and Alain very recently came out best at the World Championships with a Bronze and their blog is below;
  3. Charlotte Dobson and Sophie Ainsworth compete in the 49er class. They had a disappointing tenth in their Worlds and have yet to be selected but appear not to have much competition for that;
  4. Ben Saxton and Nicola Groves in the Nacra 17 catamaran class. It is unclear as to who will be selected but Ben and Nicola have a slight advantage currently. It is possible that the selections will be made after a regatta at Hyeres, France in April: A tricky place to sail.

Blog from Dylan Fletcher and Alain Sign: Bronze!

After getting very close on a few occasions we finally got it together, did what we needed under pressure and came away with the goods! We are both chuffed to bits with this result, especially after what we did in order to get here.

The previous worlds were disappointing for us finishing down in 10th, we knew his wasn't good enough and it was certainly not what we came there to achieve. We thought we had made the rio get choices and changes in our campaign but it was still not working. We were unable to achieve our potential.

After Argentina (2015 Worlds) we sat down and had a good look at each other. We asked some tough questions upon ourselves and we were brutally honest at times. After 9 years of sailing together you change, sometimes for the worse but what we had was an incredible bond. We wanted to make this work, we either fixed it or we would regret never trying. As our technical coach always says "there is on do or do not".

With all that in mind, we made some changes, some small and some big. All to get us to where we think we needed to go, which was up the leaderboard. We knew we have the ability, we just needed to work together and make it happen.

Initially it was tough; we went to Rio and did ok but there was some moments of brilliance and real teamwork we hadn't seen in years. Miami got better and better, although the results did not show it. We were working on things we haven't worked on in years, things that you have to accept making mistakes in regattas with when your learning. This caused us to get some OCS's and put us further down the scoresheet that we wanted. But we knew that we were sailing the best we had been in years and were confident going into the worlds.

As the worlds started we made a steady start, in fact most of the week was steady. Dealing with what was going on, trying to make every point count. At the end of it we put ourselves with a good shot of a medal going into the final race. We knew we needed to go out there win the race and put some pressure on the others. It worked, we won the race, the Aussies were over and the Austrians nearly handed us the Silver medal if it wasn't for a risk it all gybe on the last run for them.

Although to be honest we felt as though we didn't have an amazing week, it was good but we came away thinking yeah that was ok. Amazing in terms of what we worked on and our team work but actually we have got more in the tank here. We were ecstatic to win and medal, it was a bit emotional for Alain and myself. We have wanted this for so long and to pull it off when it counted after what we went through meant so much to us.

The email... We then found out there was to be no selection in the 49er and the trials continue. This was not what we expected but we know what we need to do. Just continue with our mindset, work ethic and get on with our jobs. It has been a busy couple of weeks since the worlds as we have had to change our program to accommodate he on going trials. This week we have a new boat arriving that if we get selected will be our games boat so it's all action stations as we prepare for the next leg in our journey.

Thanks very much once again for all your support and keep following to see what happens next. One things for sure is that it's going to be exciting!

Olympic Sailing Update