Brits top table with eight-medal haul on Super Saturday

Written by 6th April 2019 Featured-post
Hannah Mills and Eilidh McIntyre celebrate winning gold in Palma.

Hannah Mills and Eilidh McIntyre celebrate winning gold in Palma. ©PEDRO MARTINEZ/SAILING ENERGY/50th Trofeo Princesa Sofia Iberostar

THE HEADLINES: 

  • Great Britain top regatta medal table with eight medals on stormy super Saturday: two golds, two silvers, four bronze
  • Olympic champion Hannah Mills and Eilidh McIntyre lead the way with gold in women’s 470
    • Sealed victory with win in medal race in testing conditions
    • Only finished outside top five twice in 11 races
    • Win is important step on road to Tokyo 2020 title defence
    • Pair teamed up in 2017 after Mills’ gold medal-winning crew Saskia Clark retired post-Rio 2016
  • Dylan Fletcher and Stuart Bithell take gold in 49er fleet despite weather conditions preventing medal race
    • Rio 2016 Olympian Fletcher and London 2012 silver medallist Bithell had unassailable lead ahead of medal race
    • Pair dominated regatta, only finishing outside top five in 3 of 12 races
    • Fleet contained world’s best sailors including Rio 2016 gold medallists Blair Tuke and Peter Burling (NZL)
  • Silver for Olympic champion Giles Scott in Finn class
    • Rio 2016 gold medallist won medal race but missed top spot by two points
    • Scott won four of 11 races
  • Elliot Hanson wins Laser medal race to claim silver; Rio 2016 Olympian Nick Thompson 2nd in medal race to take bronze
  • London 2012 silver medallist Luke Patience and Chris Grube win bronze medal in men’s 470 fleet
  • In Nacra 17 fleet, Gimson / Burnet finish in third after weather prevents medal race
  • Charlotte Dobson / Saskia Tidey also seal bronze medal as plans for 49erFX medal race are abandoned
Giles Scott riding a wave to silver at Princess Sofia.

Giles Scott riding a wave to silver at Princess Sofia. ©Jesus Renedo/SAILING ENERGY/50th Trofeo Princesa Sofia Iberostar

WHAT THEY SAID:

  • Hannah Mills, 31, Cardiff, Wales (470):
    “It’s been an amazing week. It’s been a really long week, we’ve had all sorts of conditions and the racing has been super-tough. We had a really big fleet here all on one start line so every race you had to put your best foot forward and get a result. It was about consistency and we managed to do that. I’ve never won here in Palma and I’m really really happy to come away with the win this week.”
  • Eilidh McIntyre, 24, Hayling Island, Hants (470):
    “It’s been a really tough week – I’ve been struggling with a chesty cough and I’ve just been trying to get through and sail the best I could. We sailed really well. We just wanted to keep the points tight and be in with a chance with winning, and then attack the final race – and that’s what we did. We won both races yesterday and then had an epic medal race today. We didn’t go out there to win it today, it just happened! The conditions were amazing and we just sailed fast.”
  • Giles Scott, 31, Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire (Finn):
    “It was quite a big day out there today with south westerly wind of about 20 knots. I had a good race, sailed reasonably well, won the race but couldn’t get far enough away from [NZL winner] Andy Maloney so it’s second overall for the week for me. Andy had six points on me going into the race so I had to put two boats between us, which I had at the last windward mark, but he managed to get round the next mark two behind me and that was enough to prevent me winning overall. Generally I’ll take a lot of positives from this event – I sailed really well towards the back end of the week and I’m pleased with how I’m going. It’s just unfortunate that I couldn’t wrap it up with the win today.”
  • Elliot Hanson, 25, Macclesfield, Cheshire (Laser):
    “I’m really happy with a silver. I could have sailed better at the start of the week but I had a pretty consistent series and to close it out with a comfortable medal race win today was really nice. We had a real range of conditions this week ending with the windiest day today, and it’s certainly nice to stretch the legs out and see the fruits of all the fitness work we do. I was expecting Chris the American sailor to target me in the pre-start so my focus was to avoid that and stay clean. In the end I made a good job of that and had a really nice start and was able to extend away on the first leg. It was pretty simple from there. I’m happy to take a silver medal from this one.”
  • Nick Thompson, 32, Lymington, Hants (Laser):
    “It was pretty fresh out there – 20 knots and big, short waves. It was quite exciting downwind, a bit fruity! It was a good race for the Brits. Elliot got a nice jump on the start and held the lead the whole way round, while I had a battle with the majority of the fleet. I managed second in the medal race, and third overall. Generally I’m pretty happy – certainly there were a few races with points left on the table which was a bit disappointing, but that’s the nature of Palma, and Laser sailing in general. I can’t be too disappointed with the outcome.”
  • Luke Patience, 32, Rhu, Scotland (men’s 470):
    “It was a big day out at sea – windy and wavy – but we like that. It’s been ten months of light-wind racing has meant that everyone’s a bit rusty when it comes to the big breeze, and we definitely felt that rust today. We felt a bit under-practiced today but it’s given us a good excuse to go and train harder in wind and waves. We took most of the Mediterranean sea into the boat at one point coming towards the finish but we managed to drain it just in time. It was definitely tight for a moment on medals.”
  • Chris Grube, 34, Bala, Wales (men’s 470):
    “The medal race was a little messy for us but we’re so pleased with how we’ve sailed this week. We had a tricky year last year so to come to this event and pretty much nail it has been great.”
  • John Gimson, 36, Congleton, Cheshire (Nacra 17):
    “We’re super-stoked to win a medal. It’s been a really good week for us. We’re just trying to get consistent in all conditions and I think with the training we’ve done this winter [in Uruguay] we’re starting to show that we can do that. We’re pretty happy. It’s made our winter training seem like it was worthwhile.”
  • Anna Burnet, 25, Shandon, Scotland (Nacra 17):
    “It’s a bit of an anti-climax when the medal race is cancelled and you’re all ready to go. It is also a little bit of a missed opportunity because we were basically on equal points with the guys in second. But it’s good for us in a way because it leaves us really hungry. We know we’ve got more to give and we’ll come back fighting next time.”
  • Charlotte Dobson, 32, Rhu, Scotland (49erFX):
    “This week has been great for us – it’s been a really good test for all the things we’ve worked on this winter. We had a few lighter days and it was amazing to be able to deliver some results in those conditions. Then we had a few days in the conditions that we really love and it was great to dominate in those. We’re really happy with where we’ve got to with our goals but it’s also highlighted some areas which we need to improve. We’re pretty stoked right now.”

RESULTS:  Click here for the latest provisional results