Giles Scott has further stated his intent on Rio Olympic glory, today defending his Finn World Championship title to become the second most successful sailor in the Finn Gold Cup’s 60 year history.
After five days of tricky, light wind racing the Rio-bound sailor secured an unassailable 21 point margin over Danish rival Jonas Hogh-Christensen in Gaeta, Italy, a day before the final medal race on Friday (13 May).
His fourth win puts him alongside some of the all-time greats, something he had in the back of his mind: “I was very much aware of it, it was certainly nice to take that step up to that and be one step below my [America’s Cup] boss [Ben Ainslie],” Scott laughed.
“But it’s great. I think if you had taken me back eight years and told me that I was going to win one World Championship I would probably have shaken your hand there and said thank you very much, but to win four is just great.”
It was a tricky start for Scott, who got stuck on the wrong side of a 30 degree wind shift to score a 38th on day one: “When you start off with a 38th there are an awful lot of people in front of you that you’ve got to get past. I would be lying if I said there wasn’t doubt in my mind but fortunately I managed to up my game I suppose and be consistent and sail well, sail the right way and sail fast.”
“To win any World Championship is massive, but to win the won three months out from the Games is great. We have seen this event as a dry run, a peaking event, we came here not to test anything but to perform well and to be able to do that sends a bit of a message out,” said Scott.
“Ultimately anything can happen at the Games but at the moment we are happy with where we are at and we just want to take the form we have forwards.
“Next up for I’m training in the UK before the Sailing World Cup [Weymouth and Portland] and then straight after that I’m heading out to Rio for a decent stint, about over two weeks, then we go out before the Games trip in July.
“One stint and then we are in [to the games]. It’s a bit of a weird one, it feels like really far away but if you break it down it’s just around the corner.”
Tomorrow Scott just needs to just complete the medal race to confirm his title: “I will just keep my nose clean, sail a decent race. It’s always quite a nice relaxed position to be in with a medal race.
“Medal races are notoriously hard so it’s nice to have the points gap and I think they are planning on racing us under the town here in Gaeta which the wind will be straight of it, so it’s nice to have that gap,” concluded the champion looking ahead to some potentially challenging final day conditions.
Fellow teammate Ed Wright has qualified for the medal race in ninth and will be looking to jump up the leaderboard. Ben Cornish is in 16th and Peter McCoy in 33rd with one final fleet race still to go for the boats outside the top ten medal racers.
Results are available at http://2016.finngoldcup.org.
Featured Image Courtesy of https://www.flickr.com/photos/finnclassphotos/ – Robert Deaves