Sailing at London 2012 commences with a bang at midday on Sunday week with the Finns and Stars. In the former of course is the Olympic sailing phenomenon that is Britain’s Ben Ainslie. At the age of 35, Ainslie is lining up to add another gold medal to his present tally of three (two Finn and one Laser) and one silver (Laser). This would see him eclipse the four gold medal record of the great Dane, Paul Elvstrøm, making him the most successful Olympic sailor of all-time.
The ‘heavyweight men’s singlehander’ is perhaps the worst example of where the limitation of the Olympic sailing events - only allowing one sailor per nation per class - affects the competition. Including Ainslie, the line-up may feature four past Olympic medallists, six former World or European champions, and another seven championship medallists, but the situation is absurd due to the dominance of the British Finn squad. This has produced three separate World Champions in the last three years – Ben Ainslie at the recent JP Morgan Asset Management Finn Gold Cup (aka World Championship) in Falmouth, when Giles Scott wasn’t competing due to his America’s Cup World Series commitments to Team Korea; Scott won Perth 2011 (when Ainslie was penalised for his RIB driver contratent) and Ed Wright claimed the 2010 title in San Francisco (when Ainslie wasn’t competing and Scott finished third).
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but you can view their League Table of medal prospects here