Skip to main content Skip to footer

Meet the team: John Gimson



John Gimson

John Gimson


Newly crowned European champ looking for gold in Marseille


John Gimson will be doing all within his power to turn silver into gold alongside partner Anna Burnet after the pair were selected to represent Team GB at the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.

The Nacra 17 duo bagged Olympic silver on the waters on Enoshima together and qualified for 2024 with the same colour at August's Sailing World Championships in The Hague.

Within markedly different conditions expected in Marseille, Gimson, 40, and Burnet, 31, are prepared to go one step further, including training alongside the Italian pair who beat them to gold in 2021.

“The goal in Marseille is to win gold,” Gimson said. “I think the most controllable way we can do that is just working as hard as we can for next year so we turn up in France with the best package possible.

“We train alongside the Italians, who won gold at Tokyo and we both train in strong conditions.

“We’re certain that we will push as hard as we can and leave as few stones unturned as possible.

“The weather in Marseille is a lot less predictable than Enoshima so you have to be ready to be ready to take on anything.

“Over the week of the regatta I’m sure there will be a lot of highs and lows so it will come down to emotions and a team that can take the pressure through the week which we’re hoping we can, it’s something that we work on very hard.”

Gimson and Burnet on their world record-breaking challenge

Gimson and Burnet on their world record-breaking challenge

Earlier in the month, Gimson and Burnet managed a record-breaking feat when they sailed from Belfast Ballyholme to Portpatrick in one hour 30 minutes on their Nacra 17 boat.

They worked with double Olympic champion and coach Iain Percy, CEO of Artemis Technologies, to issue a wake-up call and promote the decarbonisation of the maritime industry.

Gimson admitted that if the pair can have any environmental impact on the waters, it would equal the feeling of medalling in Marseille.

“Primarily we’re going out to win medals but if we can have any impact on decarbonising the industry it would equally feel like a big achievement in a very different way,” he said.

“Where we train in the winter in Trapani, there are a lot of very polluting ferries that emit diesel fumes.

“Even if we can change just one ferry route to go electric then we would've done more than what we hoped.”

“The colours that we win is down to us as individuals to perform so we’ll just do everything we can to understand the venue, understand what we’re up against.

“We spend a lot of time in the venue, we were there from April through to the test event in July.

“We’ll do a little bit of training in Weymouth now on our own but through the winter we will be in between Sicily and Sardinia.”

About the author

Will Carson