Ainslie guaranteed at least a silver
Ben Ainslie is guaranteed at least a silver medal in the Finn class after Friday’s racing in Qingdao. He came second in today’s race, putting him twelve points ahead of his nearest rival, American Zach Railey. The British Olympic team manager Stephen Park was confident. He told the Daily Mail: “If it comes down to a medal race between Ben and another boat, Ben will kill him. It is not even a discussion worth having. Bet your house on it. Bet your mate’s house on it. In fact, bet the nation’s house on it.
He will just annihilate anybody else that he has got to beat.”
The Yngling trio of Sarah Ayton, Sarah Webb and Pippa Wilson have also ensured a medal for Team GB – a minimum of silver as long as they finish their medal race without incident. They are currently tied for first place with the Dutch team. While they would not be drawn on their approach to tomorrow’s showdown with the Dutch team, they seem to be relishing the challenge. “It’s a great position to be in, going into the medal race – it’s just us and the Dutch, who beats who for gold and silver.”
Elsewhere among Team GB’s sailors, European Champion Paul Goodison has found himself at the top of the Laser class leaderboard, thank to a race win in the only race of the day for the single-handed class.
“We finally got to do some hiking – some real sailing almost – and things went well and I seemed to pull away quite nicely so I’m pretty happy with how I sailed today.”
The Star and Tornado crews finally got their regatta underway with one race apiece. Leigh McMillan and Will Howden posted a sixth in the catamaran event, while Sydney gold medallist Iain Percy and crew Andrew Simpson finished seventh in their opening race of the men’s keelboat class. In the 470 men’s event, Nick Rogers and Joe Glanfield have slipped just outside of the medal zone with a 20th in their sole race of the day – they’re poised in fourth place.
The 49er class was the only one to see no action at all on Friday