Please select your home edition
Edition
PredictWind.com 2014

London Olympics 201 - Belcher and Page win Gold in the Men's 470 class

by David Schmidt, Sail-World USA Editor on 10 Aug 2012
Mathew Belcher and Malcolm Page (AUS) took Gold in the Men’s 470 event in the London Olympics 2012. onEdition © http://www.onEdition.com
Ask any sailor about ideal racing conditions and the answer is universal—the more wind the merrier (within reason)! Why? Light-air racing tests and challenges racers in unique ways as crucial fractions of a knot are earned and lost with micro adjustments in body position, sail trim and, of course, tactics. For the Gold medal-winning Australian Men’s 470 team of Matthew Belcher and Malcolm Page, however, today was their opportunity to prove to the world that they are equally quick in the sticky, light stuff as they are in a proper Aussie blow.

While there had been some early fears that the wind gods might rob the Men’s 470 fleet of a medal race, the RC was successfully able to dispatch the fleet on a Windward-Leeward course (twice around), thus fulfilling many sailor’s Olympic dreams.

As was previously reported, today’s Gold and Silver medal battle came down to the story of two teams, the Aussies and the British-flagged team of Luke Patience and Stuart Bithell. The Brits crossed the starting line with a small points deficit, meaning that the only way that Patience and Bithell could claim the top step of the podium was to not only finish ahead of their antipodean rivals, but to also ensure that at least one other boat finished between their stern and the Aussies’ bow.

The Australian team took control of the race from the get-go, sailing slightly faster than their British rivals on all legs in the wispy air. While the Brits wisely tried to engage Belcher and Page in a series of tacking duels, this racecourse tomfoolery didn’t add up to anything strategically useful (although it did provide for fantastic spectator moments for the crowds assembled on Nothe Hill, and for the countless fans watching on television).


Croatia’s Sime Fantela and Igor Marenic crossed the finishing line four seconds ahead of Belcher and Page to claim the bullet, while the Patience and Bithell finished 12 seconds astern of their Gold-medal rivals. The Argentinean-flagged team of Lucas Calabrese and Juan de la Fuente finished in third place, thus cementing their spot on the podium’s third tier and earning their Olympic Bronze medal.

To celebrate, the Aussies and the Brits both intentionally capsized and took 'victory swims', once they were clear of the finishing area. Once their masts were again vertical, all three medal winners took their prerequisite victory lap past the cheering crowds on Nothe Hill (which, incidentally, included the parents of both the newly minted Gold and Silver medalist teams) before heading into the dinghy park for more celebrations.

Please stay tuned for more news from the Men’s 470 class, including quotes from the medal winners and plenty of racecourse images from today’s medal-race contest.

Zhik ZKG 660x82Southern Spars - 100Ancasta Ker 33 660x82

Related Articles

New Pacific 52 class makes its debut in San Francisco
The first of two new-build Pacific 52's from Auckland's Cookson Boats is now sailing in San Francisco. The first of two new-build Pacific 52's from Auckland's Cookson Boats is now sailing in San Francisco. Invisible Hand for San Francisco's Frank Slootman replaces his earlier RP63 of the same name. She will soon be joined by a second Cookson build, Bad Pack (Tom Holthus) from the same moulds. A third, RIO 52 is for RIO 100 supermaxi owner Manouch Moshayedi.
Posted on 18 Mar
Gladwell's Line - Of Carnage, Characters and Colour
About this time of an America's Cup season, the sap begins rising as new boats are launched About this time of an America's Cup season, the sap begins rising as new boats are launched, and Cup fans get their first sight of the various team designers' response to the latest America's Cup Class rule. In the monohull days, of course, we initially only got a partial glimpse thanks to the shrouding practices adopted by all teams to hide the nether regions of their America's Cupper
Posted on 13 Mar
So what’s it really like?
For ages now, these editorials have talked about multihull this, record that, outrageous boat speed and 24-hour runs For ages now, well it seems like that anyway, these editorials have talked about multihull this, record that, outrageous boat speed and incredible 24-hour runs. In their own very unique way they totally represent the technical avant-garde, and thank God for that. Where would we be without their impressive shapes, wonderful rigs, and now of course, foiling magic.
Posted on 6 Mar
JJ Giltinan 18ft - Kiwi Champion the subject of two protests in Sydney
Overall series leader Yamaha will have her position put on the line in a series of protest hearings on Friday Overall series leader Yamaha will have her position put on the line in a series of protest hearings Friday morning in Sydney. She faces two claims - both from Appliancesonline (David Witt). The first is an attempt to re-open the Hearing held on Wednesday morning after Yamaha was suffered damage in Race 3 as a result of a collision with a give way yacht, and Yamaha received redress of average
Posted on 3 Mar
America's Cup - Emirates Team NZ give first look at the pedaling AC50
Emirates Team New Zealand formally christened their new AC50 America's Cup Challenger on a rainy Auckland afternoon. Emirates Team New Zealand formally christened their new AC50 America's Cup Challenger on a rainy Auckland afternoon. The team has been sailing for the previous two days making news headlines after it was revealed in Sail-World.com that the AC50 would become only the second yacht in America's Cup history to use pedal power.
Posted on 16 Feb
America's Cup - Kiwis sign Olympic Cyclist for the Tour de Bermuda
Ttop cyclist Simon van Velthooven, a 2012 Olympic Bronze cycling medallist had been signed by the America's Cup team Emirates Team New Zealand put in a second foiling display on Auckland's Waitemata harbour ahead of the official launching of their AC50 tomorrow. With brighter skies the cycling team took their places on the pedalstals and used leg power to provide the hydraulic pressure necessary to run the AC50's control systems for the foils and wingsail.
Posted on 15 Feb
A Q&A with Anna Tunnicliffe about her return to competitive sailing
I talked with Anna Tunnicliffe before the Sailing World Cup Miami to learn about her return to Olympic-class sailing. Anna Tunnicliffe won gold at the Beijing 2008 Olympics in the Laser Radial before shifting her sights to the Women’s Match Racing event for the London 2012 Olympics. Here, she came up shy of expectation and left sailing for the CrossFit Games, but now she is returning to her roots. I talked with Tunnicliffe before the Sailing World Cup Miami to learn about her return to Olympic-class sailing.
Posted on 23 Jan
A Q&A with Dick Neville, Quantum Key West Race Week’s RC chairman
I caught up with Dick Neville, Race Committee chair for the Quantum Key West Race Week, to learn more about the event. For the past 30 years, international sailors have gathered in Key West, Florida, each January for Key West Race Week, a regatta that has achieved legendary status due to its calendar dates, its location, and the impressive level of competition and racecourse management that this storied event offers. I caught up with Dick Neville, Race Committee chair for this year’s Quantum KWRW, to learn more.
Posted on 16 Jan
A Q&A with Daniel Smith, the Clipper Race’s new deputy race director
I talked with Daniel Smith, the Clipper Round The World Race’s new deputy race director, to learn more about his role. I was fortunate to sail with Daniel Smith [36, SCO], skipper of “Derry~Londonderry~Doire” for the 2015/2016 edition of the Clipper Round The World Race, when the fleet reached Seattle last spring. Now, Smith has been hired as the event’s deputy race director-a job that will test many of the skills that he polished as a skipper. I caught up with Smith via email to learn more about his new job.
Posted on 9 Jan
Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - Suck it up, sunshine!
The 72nd start of the iconic blue water classic had 300,000 spectators lining the foreshores of Sydney Harbour The 72nd start of the iconic blue water classic had 300,000 spectators lining the foreshores of Sydney Harbour, another two million watching on TV, and the constant buzz and whir of media helicopters overhead. 88 boats, from Australia, USA, UK, Germany, Sweden, Russia, Japan, Korea, China, oh and New Zealand, had lined up on three start lines.
Posted on 31 Dec 2016