Jock Calvert (AUS) has a dream. This week he is sailing at the U23 Finn World Championship for the Finn Silver Cup in Aarhus Denmark, but he is aiming much higher. After just six months in the class the 18 year old from Tasmania has set his sights on Tokyo 2020.
Calvert has progressed through the Sabot class and Laser 4.7 before moving onto windsurfing. After sailing the 4.7 World Championship in San Francisco he attained a third place finish at the Australian 4.7 Nationals. Later, during five years of windsurfing he went to three youth World Championships in the RS:X. “The highlight of those years getting my first international race win at my final youth worlds, in Langkawi Malaysia.”
By then the 18 year old had outgrown all these classes, but then was introduced to the Finn. “I’ve now been in the Finn for six months, after getting sick of trying to stay lightweight for other classes. I wanted to fill out, eat real food, do a proper gym programme and live my life again. I had a few goes in a borrowed Finn, and it wasn’t long before I got my own.”
How did he adapt to Finn sailing? “I loved it.”
“The Finn appeals to me because it’s a boat that rewards you for effort. It goes fast when you go hard. I love the close racing and feeling of power. The Finn was also pretty much my only option. I started to fill out too much to be fast on the RS:X, and I didn’t love Lasers, so it was always the Finn for me.”
He says he has received a lot of help so far in getting into the class from both the Australian Finn class and the other sailors. "They've helped me out with all the questions I’ve had, and things I’ve needed.”
In preparing for the Silver Cup, “My coach, Richard Scarr, has done a wonderful job getting me ready for this regatta, making me think twice about what I thought I knew to make sure that I really did know it, being my eyes outside of the boat and getting my skills to a point where I can among other boats will full confidence.”
He has set high goals for the next few years. “My ambitions for the next 12 months are to win the Australian Nationals, and to qualify for the Australian Sailing Squad at the Palma Regatta. After that, I want to be able to mix it up at the big regattas with the best guys and hopefully come back to the Silver Cup to win it.”
Further afield, “It’s a big ask, but in four years I’d love to be able to be battling Jake Lilley and all the other top Aussie guys for selection to the Tokyo Games.”
About the Finn Silver Cup
• Around 40 of the world's best young Finn sailors are taking part in the U23 Finn World Championship for the Jorg Bruder Finn Silver Cup in Aarhus Denmark.
• Aarhus is the host of the 2018 Sailing World Championships
• The 'Jorg Bruder Silver Cup' was presented to the Finn Class in 2003, on the occasion of the Finn Gold Cup in Rio, by the Brazilian Olympic Committee as a memorial to the late great Finn sailor from Brazil.
• 13 races will be held over five days from Tuesday 5 July to Saturday 9 July.
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Video interviews with sailors can be produced on request.