Defending Champions Make Their Move

Posted on August 16, 2016 by

On a day where a lack of wind forced Tom Burton to put his gold medal claim on hold, two of his NSWIS teammates made a clear statement to the rest of the competition.

The champs certainly arrived in Rio and made it clear they’re not giving up their Olympic title without a fight.

NSWIS sailors Nathan Outteridge and Iain Jensen were the big movers as the 49er class moved past the halfway point of the series.

After starting the day equal sixth overall, the gold medal duo from London four years ago surged up the leaderboard and are now lurking ominously in third place.

In the opening race of the day, race 7, Outteridge and Jensen flew home to finish fourth.

That catapulted them up to third overall and they consolidated that spot with fifth in race 8 and eighth in race 9.

The Australians now sit on 54 points, 15 behind the German duo who are currently in the silver medal position.

They are two points clear of the French crew in fourth and 10 points ahead of the fifth placed Argentinians.

However, their gold medal hopes look highly unlikely with their New Zealand rivals Peter Burling and Blair Tuke having one of the meets of their life.

The Kiwis have enjoyed three race wins already. They have finished in the top three in six of the nine races so far.

Weather and conditions permitting, Burton will go for gold in the Laser class tonight (AEST).

He goes into the medal race in second position and is all but guaranteed a medal.

NSWIS cousins Lisa Darmanin and Jason Waterhouse are also scheduled to sail for gold in the Mixed Nacra 17 class.

After leading the competition for most of the series, the Australians slipped back to fourth heading into the medal race. Nonetheless a medal remains well within their grasp.

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