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Southern Spars - North Technology

Olympic 470 sailors Belcher and Page in Weymouth

by Mathew Belcher and Malcolm Page on 16 Jul 2012
The long hours at Weymouth training, cold wet and windy © Victor Kovalenko
Australian Double Handed Olympic Men's Class - 470 sailors Mathew Belcher and Malcolm Page on their experience thus far in Weymouth, UK awaiting the start of the 2012 Olympic Games.

We are on the eve of the big Olympic event... and things feel good.

We had a slow June being situated in one town - Weymouth UK. I will run through some of the adventures we had last month. Firstly we started with the Sail for Gold regatta, which was our first win (opposed to all the second's we had) in this venue. This regatta win made it seven in a row for us. Secondly, on the Queens' Birthday weekend, our super coach Victor was announced as a recipient of an Order of Australia Medal which was a massive honour. Then just to top it off, we got to meet Prince Charles when he visited the Olympic Sailing Venue. So as you can see, just a regular month on the Olympic circuit.

The weather we experienced while in the UK was to put it politely... terrible...Britain has received the wettest summer (or thereabouts) on record this year. So when our training camp finished early in July, we were very happy and enthusiastic to go somewhere else and dry ourselves out!

However it was not all damp news, towards the end of that training period we started to feel and know we were ready for the big event, and in many ways we were just keeping our form and killing the time towards the games. This once again shows the skill of our master planner Coach Victor.

That being said, we could not have reached this point without the larger team. In particular our good mates and training partners Sam Kivell and Will Ryan have been invaluable. These young guys have been with us for the last three years and have been on the water with us every day. We have shared cars, equipment, travelling, information and resources for this period (thankfully not undies). The relationship has been incredible and I know we could not be current World Champs and World Number One without their support, drive and talent. So a huge thanks to our good friends Sam and Will, who I know will have a few late nights over the games period... Like many of you.

So the finer details about the London Olympics is as follows:

27 July - Opening ceremony
2 August - Racing starts for the 470Men, with two races scheduled each day.
5-8 August - reserve days... but I'm sure they will be used as Mother Nature always throws a few curve balls.
9 August - Medal race and final day... medal ceremony that evening.




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