Congratulations to Laser sailor David Wright (RCYC) for his 2012 Olympic qualification today at Miami OCR! Wright's fourth place finish in the medal race was enough to clinch the Olympic spot and capture the bronze medal at this event! Wright came into the second phase of Olympic trials trailing by 3 points behind fellow team mate Chris Dold (RCYC). Wright showcased spectacular sailing at Biscayne Bay putting up 4 bullets in the first 3 days of racing. David posted a message to fans and supporters saying 'It has been easily the hardest 6 weeks of my life to recover from Perth and prepare to get the job done here in Miami. First World Cup Podium and First Olympic Berth, all in the same day. I have been moved beyond words by the entire experience.'
With only 2 trial points separating the two Canadian Laser sailors going into medal race day, Wright (3rd) & Dold (8th) certainly provided Canada with some nail biting action on the water! Despite the outcome, Chris Dold can be applauded for his efforts and hard work leading up to these Olympic trials. Dold had to fly home unexpectedly at the 2011 Miami OCR after injuring his knee on the first day of racing, inevitably having surgery and rehab in the following months. Chris did not make his official return back to the racing circuit until the Laser NA's in July. Dold will undoubtedly make his mark on the International circuit in the coming years.
The Finn medal race was chalked full of Canucks vying for top spots on the last day of the regatta. With 3 Canadian boats in the final, Greg Douglas wins a Bronze medal on a tie breaker with Brendan Casey of AUS. Douglas, who placed 15th at this event one year ago, has been on a steep curve up and continues to demonstrate his ability to play with the big boys! Brendan Wilton & Martin Robitaille also showed signs of strength with Wilton taking second place in the medal race and Robitaille sailing his first medal race ever! The Finns will be gearing up for their Olympic trials at the end of May in England.
Gordon Cook/Hunter Lowden came out on top of the Canadian 49er fleets in Miami, placing a respectable fifth overall. Ladha/Inkpen (8th) & Gooderham/Hogan (9th) did not make it easy for them, sailing right on their heels and illustrating the depth and talent that currently exists in the Canadian 49er fleet. Their Olympic trials will take place in Zadar, Croatia at the beginning of May.
Star team Clarke/Bjorn struggled, by their standards, at times this week however still maintained top 10 position throughout the week and will be using this training event towards the podium in London.
Dominique Vallee wins her medal race today and moves up the scoreboard to take the Bronze medal! Dave Hayes sailed a consistently strong regatta in the RSX, taking third in the medal race and placing fifth overall. The RSX World Championships serves as the Canadian Olympic RSX qualifier, which takes place at the end of March in Cadiz, Spain.
Canada has a lot to celebrate at the conclusion of Miami OCR: 4 podium results, 2 Olympic qualifiers, 11 boats in the medal races and a total of 10 bullets! Canadian sailors have certainly made their mark at the first ISAF World Cup event of 2012! Congratulations to all Canadian sailors, coaches and support team!
Full results that can be found at Miami OCR website?nid=93350