sail-world.com
 
 
News Home Cruising Photo Gallery Video Gallery

 

Sail-World.com : Slingsby stumbled in Qingdao. What Happened?

Slingsby stumbled in Qingdao. What Happened?

'Tom Slingsby, head in hands, just metres from the finish line of race 2 in the Mens Laser'    © Richard Gladwell    Click Here to view large photo

Australia's Laser sailor Tom Slingsby was the gold medal favourite going into the 2008 Olympic regatta. He'd won the last two World Champions and was in winning form. But he had a shocker, finishing 22nd overall. Now Tom talks about what happened and the road ahead.

Slingsby comments ' Since I have returned from the Olympic Games in Beijing I have been asked one question over and over - 'What happened?' The simple answer is 'I don’t know'. If I knew, I would have changed something during the event. I will give you a rundown of my view of the Olympics and what it was like from my perspective.

The Olympics

After arriving in China from our team camp in Hong Kong, we were straight into the Olympic Sailing Village. I began training on 29th July which gave me plenty of time to practise in my allocated boat before my event began on the 12th August.

While I was training before the event started, I had already noticed I was struggling a little for boat speed in practice races. I was very surprised as in the lead-up events I had been very fast in light wind races and with my lighter weight (75-76 kg), why I was having problems?

Arthur and I began working on things to try to get my speed edge back but even now, a month later, I don’t know exactly what the problem was. So when day one of racing arrived, I knew deep down that I was going to have to sail the regatta of my life to keep up with the fast guys.

Basically, the long and short of the regatta was I did not sail well with the boat speed problem. This meant I could not hold lanes, which meant I could not go where I wanted to go, which meant I was forced to take risks, which meant not only was I slow, but I was sailing low percentage strategies.

I finished the event in 22nd place with a best race of an 11th. In the last 33 lead up races prior to the Olympics, I had been top five in 30 races, with a worst result of an 11th!

Post Olympics

To say I was devastated is an understatement. I had put all my energy over the past eight years into achieving one goal – Olympic Gold. To be honest, I had never in all that time even thought of any other result in China. So when I realised that it wasn’t going to happen, it really took me by surprise and emotionally I wasn’t ready for it. I found myself really questioning myself and my whole journey to get to that point.

After the Olympics, I kind of went into hiding for awhile. I just didn’t want to talk about it to anyone, not even family. Even now, writing this, I get emotional when I think of the feelings I had watching the medal race from the break wall and seeing Paul Goodison win the Gold Medal. That was one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do.

Since the games I have heard a lot of reasons from others 'why I didn’t win'. The bottom line is that I was unable to cope with the tricky conditions that China put on. To succeed, I needed to have all bases covered but, as anyone who has sailed in tight one-design racing knows, without boat speed your options are severely limited. The conditions in China were the toughest I have ever sailed in and I give full credit to Paul Goodison for mastering them, sailing an amazing regatta and winning the Gold Medal, which he truly deserved.

I would like to also congratulate our Aussie Sailing medallists. You guys all deserve your wonderful achievements and will be great role models to the future generations.

The Future

After the games had finished, I didn’t want to even think about what now lay in the future for me. I had always thought that after I won the Gold Medal that I would change classes and try to win Gold in 2012 in another class. Since this plan has been sidetracked, I was always answering questions about my future with 'I’ll take time off and think about it'.

After we returned home we went straight up to the beautiful Hamilton Island. We attended a sponsors and patrons dinner to talk about our Olympic experience and to congratulate the team. During the dinner, Simon McKeon made a speech congratulating the team, not only the winners, but the whole team. At the end, he made mention of me, saying for me not to be down and to keep my head up because he and everyone believed that I am so much better than my result, and that 2012 will be a different story.

I’m not sure whether it was Simon’s kind words, the spirit of the night, or the several red wines in good company and comfortable surroundings, but after all the speeches were done, I decided to make an impromptu speech and announce that I had just decided that I will campaign in the Laser class the 2012 Olympics in London. 'I am better than my result in China and I will do everything in my power to bring home Gold for myself and for Australia in four years time'.

Tom Slingsby - 2007 and 2008 Laser World Champion has set his sites on London 2012 -  Sail-World.com -AUS?nid=49163 ©   Click Here to view large photo



However, all that said, I do need a good break from Laser sailing. Lasers over the next year will play a back seat role and I would like to get more involved in the world of yacht racing. I have been racing Sydney 38’s and Farr 40’s over the past few years, but that was secondary to my Laser sailing. I now look forward to putting it first for a while amongst a few other projects I have in mind.

Thanks

I would firstly like to thank my family for all their support over the years, for believing in my dream of a Gold Medal. Unfortunately, it didn’t work out this time but the dream and desire is still there and I can proudly say it will be a different story in four years.

I would like to thank my second family, the Australian Sailing Team, the athletes, support staff and management. Thank you so much for supporting me through the tough times in China. I’ve made some life-long friends.

Thank you to the AST sponsors, Hamo Island and the Oatley family, Audi Australia, Aus Sports Commission, AIS, Gill and the gang at Ronstan, to the AST patrons, and to my personal sponsors, Nelson Bay Laser Sales, Performance Sailcraft Australia, Kaenon, Vodaphone and Visa. I look forward to a wonderful future with you. To my agent, Geoff Jones, thanks for your help.

To everyone who has helped me over the years, whether it was telling me to pull more mainsheet as an 8 year old in Sabots at Gosford Sailing Club, Fletch kicking me out of training sessions telling me to come back when 'you learn how to f**kin’ start' (it worked!), the staff at YA who are always there to help me when I mess up container issues or miss flights - a big thank you to all of you!

And lastly (but certainly not ...…), to my coach and great mate Arthur Brett. Firstly, congrats on your marriage to the beautiful Belinda Stowell! Your help and guidance over the last five years is greatly appreciated. We have been through a lot together and I can honestly say I would not be where I am today in sailing without you. You have truly changed my life for the better. Thank you.

In closing, I’ll leave you with a quote I read in a book about Mick Fanning, World Surfing Champion, who I admire:
'Sometimes, when a man embarks on a mission, he can become impossible to stop'.

Bring on 2012!




by Tom Slingsby

  

Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=49163

7:03 PM Wed 24 Sep 2008 GMT






Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.

Click for further information on
2008 Olympics Qingdao

Related News Stories:

17 Dec 2014  Day 12 of the PSA 12 Days of Christmas
16 Dec 2014  Day 11 of PSA's Laser Santa 12 Days of Christmas
15 Dec 2014  Day 10 of the PSA Laser Santa 12 Days of Christmas
14 Dec 2014  Day 9 of the PSA Laser Santa 12 Days of Christmas
06 Dec 2014  Laser Training at H20 Sports Academy Australia
22 Oct 2013  Another week of the PSA New Laser and Rig Deal
15 Oct 2013  Great Laser boat and rig deal for the next two weeks
29 Sep 2013  Laser World Championships - Star studded entries confirmed
10 Aug 2013  Now more news on the foiling Laser
22 Feb 2013  Western Australia Laser Dinghy Championship 2013 - Crowded competition
MORE STORIES ...

News - USA and the World

40 year old Charles Caudrelier the skipper of race leader Dongfeng was a major figure of the winning French team Groupama in 2011-12 . With the Dongfeng team now approaching Sanya, almost unstoppable, its worthwhile hearing from Volvo Ocean Race CEO Knut Frostad who is hugely pleased with the current on water situation. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race. The northerly drag race continues, with the stable light wind forecast to drop slightly. The boats have all remained in position, if anything cementing their places with gaps between them increasing slightly through the night. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race Leg 3 - After what can only be described as a frustrating few days of wind and current conditions in the Malacca Strait, the shipping lanes we had to pass were a bit more entertaining as it was upwind which meant some tacking. ... [more]  

Quantum Key West Race Week provided the opportunity for the GC32s to make a spectacular debut in the USA. During the five days of racing held in balmy temperatures off the southernmost tip of Florida, crews experienced a range of conditions. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race Leg 3 - Sailing in a straight line was never supposed to be as tense as this. We’ve been pointing at Sanya for almost a day now and fortunately, Alvimedica, MAPFRE, and Brunel far enough back to not be in AIS range anymore. The problem is they’re not in AIS range anymore. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race: Leg 3 Finish - Live video feed by Richard Gladwell, Sail-World.com/nz
Tune in here to see the finish of Leg 3 of the Volvo Ocean race in Sanya. Will sailing history be made? Can Dongfeng become the first Chinese flagged yacht to win a Leg in a Round the World Race? ... [more]  

2015 ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami - Bigger than ever in 2015, with an atmosphere crackling with adrenaline, the ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami, Presented by Sunbrella, was ground zero on Sunday as competitors from 63 countries made their final preparations. ... [more]  

The Chinese entry Dong looks set to create sailing sailing history when she finishes first on Leg 3 of the Volvo Ocean Race, Sanya in two days time. Includes video Currently Dongfeng is 250 nm to the finish line in Sanya and the chasing pack with ADOR ahead in second place 55+ nm behind the Chinese team. ... [more]  

The first of the iconic Great Capes has been passed in the Barcelona World Race with Cheminées Poujoulat rounding the Cape of Good Hope earlier this morning. Bernard Stamm and Jean Le Cam passed 20°E around 400 miles south of Cape Agulhas – the southernmost tip of Africa – at 0935am (UTC) today and have begun the Indian Ocean leg of their race around Antarctica. ... [more]  

The Classic 18fters were racing again on Saturday on Sydney harbour. Michael Chittenden caught the action from a shore vantage point. ... [more]  

When race leader Dongfeng rounded Singapore 60+ nautical miles ahead of the chasing pack, it looked like the final 1200 miles of Leg three would be a procession but over the last day, the Volvo Ocean race leg from Abu Dhabi to Sanya China appears to have tightened incredibly. ... [more]  

US Sailing and Rolex USA announced last week that the 2014 Rolex Yachtswoman of the Year is Stephanie Roble. Her accomplishments on the water last year were recognized by the selection panel for her versatility; her accomplishments as a skipper and as a crew; and her competitive successes on a variety of platforms, sailing against both men and women. ... [more]  

Barcelona World Race - The first of the Great Capes is fast-approaching, with the leading boats in the Barcelona World Race expected to pass the longitude of the Cape of Good Hope at the tip of South Africa tomorrow. As they pass 20°E, the Atlantic Ocean will deliver its verdict – did Cheminées Poujoulat’s east-bound track or Neutrogena’s southerly gamble pay off? ... [more]  

Mardi Gras may not be for another month but US Sailing’s National Sailing Programs Symposium (NSPS) kicked it off early for Oakcliff Sailing this year. This evening, Oakcliff received The Captain Joe Prosser Award, given to an organization that has made an exemplary contribution toward improving the quality and safety in the training or instruction of sailors. ... [more]  

The 35th St. Maarten Heineken Regatta has already attracted entries from 20 different countries: Antigua, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Dominican Republic, Estonia, France, Germany, Great Britain, Italy, Lithuania, Netherlands, Norway, Puerto Rico, Russia, St.Maarten, Uruguay, USA and the US Virgin Islands. ... [more]  

The world is watching. Can Dongfeng Race Team hold onto their 57 nautical miles lead to China for what will essentially be the ultimate home victory? Or will another team get desperate and make a bold decision that could cost Dongfeng their win? ... [more]  

Most of the marque classes at Quantum Key West Race Week 2015 came down to the last day of the regatta, which delivered the toughest conditions of the week. Howling winds and rough seas challenging the competitors on Friday, forcing the top contenders to raise their game in order to claim overall victory. ... [more]  

Barcelona World Race - Sport met science today on the Barcelona World Race when the pairs of skippers took the first opportunity to deploy their data monitoring Argo beacon which was given to them in Bareclona prior to the start. ... [more]  

2015 Quantum Key West Race Week - It really wasn’t our week. Two races were held today in very nice conditions and we finished third in both. Bella Mente won both races to win the class. ... [more]  

The Mount Gay Round Barbados Race Series, incorporating three days of coastal racing and the Mount Gay Rum Round Barbados Race concluded last night at a sumptuous, Mount Gay Rum-fuelled prizegiving dinner and party. The final 300-mile Ocean Race to Antigua to tie up with the Superyacht Cup starts on Saturday. ... [more]  

Photographer Ingrid Abery was on the water again today at 2015 Quantum Key West Race Week, and provided this gallery of images from day five ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race 2015 - With a solid 17-20 knots from the north east, reducing the possibility of a distance sapping park up, the likehood of the Leg three leader the Chinese boat Dongfeng getting the gun in Sanya just 640 nautical miles ahead continues to strengthen. ... [more]  

The 2015 ISAF Youth Match Racing World Championship set to be held in Swinoujscie, Poland from 15 – 19 September 2015 Notice of Race has been released. ... [more]  

Currently doing scheduled maintenance. Some elements of site may not be visible at the moment. ... [more]  

On 2nd January 2015, Team Vestas Wind announced that skipper Chris Nicholson had been tasked to review the team during the month of January. The objective is to ensure the right team for the come back to the race, which is now, for this team, of a different nature than the scheduled original route from Alicante to Gothenburg. ... [more]  

Beau Outteridge has compiled a video of highlights and interviews from the 2015 McDougall + McConanghy Moth Worlds completed recently in Sorrento, Melbourne ... [more]  

Former Oracle Team USA team member, Matthew Mitchell has issued a media release stating that he has lodged a complaint with the International Sailing Federation over the actions of a fellow crew member, Simeon Tienpont, and inaction by the International Jury for the 34th America's Cup, in San Francisco. ... [more]  

Photographer Ingrid Abery was on the water at 2015 Quantum Key West Race Week, and provided this gallery of images from day four. ... [more]  

2015 ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami - Along with the rest of the 848 sailors from 63 nations currently training in Florida ahead of ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami, Presented by Sunbrella (January 26-31), US Sailing Team Sperry Top-Sider athletes and coaches have entered a period of intense focus ahead of the first major Olympic and Paralympic event of 2015. ... [more]  

2015 Quantum Key West Race Week - It probably won't be a late night on Duval Street for the sailors competing on Division Two and Three at Quantum Key West Race Week 2015. After doing three races in strong winds on Thursday, there are no doubt a lot of sore muscles, aching bones and tired bodies. ... [more]  

Children’s heart health continues to benefit from Team Alvimedica’s online auction now underway for two unique experiences during the Volvo Ocean Race stopover here. The Chinese Agape Foundation Inc. will be the recipient of funds raised for these unique team experiences in Sanya, the next stopover port of the global ocean race. ... [more]  

Lauderdale Olympic Classes Regatta overall by John Payne, Fort Lauderdale
The Lauderdale Olympic Classes Regatta was held January 17-19 in the Atlantic Ocean off of Dania Beach in Ft. Lauderdale, FL. Open to Finns (it’s their Midwinter Championship), Lasers and Laser Radials, competitors came from twenty countries and Puerto Rico. They range in age from 14 to 79. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15 Leg 3 update from Dongfeng Race Team: All hands on deck as Chinese crew suffer damage to their boat as the tack line of an important sail (J1) broke suddenly sending the 132 m² sail shooting up the forestay in a matter of seconds. The team have managed to set up a temporary replacement but the reality is, this is a rude awakening of how far away the finish line is. ... [more]  

America's Cup: Italy to host first America's Cup World Series regatta
Breeze and Sunshine at Quantum Key West Race Week
Images of the Millennium Cup and Bay of Islands Sailing Week - Day 1:
2015 Mount Gay Rum Round Barbados Race – Three records broken
St.Maarten Heineken Regatta - Simplified logistics and fun themes
2015 Quantum Key West Race Week - Day 3 images by Ingrid Abery
Millennium Cup: Racing in the picturesque Bay of Islands
Volvo Ocean Race - Up up and away
Barcelona World Race - 'Haves' and 'Have Nots'
Volvo Ocean Race Leg 3 update from Jack Bouttell onboard Dongfeng
ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami - Game time!
Extreme Sailing Series™ 2015 – Ninth year ready to rock!
Foiling GC32s Key West Race Week images by Ingrid Abery
Mount Gay Rum Round Barbados Race - Crews prepare for big race
2015 Quantum Key West Race Week - Day 2
2015 Quantum Key West Race Week - A challenging day
America's Cup: Spithill leads Oracle reconnaissance team in Bermuda
Extreme Sailing Series announces new teams and venues for 2015
Barcelona World Race - Leaders enter the fastest section of the course
Martinique Surf Pro - Must attend event in the world surfing circuit
New York Yacht Club Invitational Cup preview   
RORC Caribbean 600 proving irresistible   
18ft Skiffs: Images from NSW Championships - Race 2   
Volvo Ocean Race – Malacca Nightmare – now it’s a boat race again!!   
2015 Annapolis to Newport Race - Battle for Surflant Prize   
2015 Quantum Key West Race Week - Off to a great start   
Volvo Ocean Race: Team Alvimedica - Enter the Dragon + Video   
Mount Gay Round Barbados Race Series - Day 3   
World Match Racing Tour's title sponsor goes into administration   
Kieler Woche 2015 promotes Olympic sailing competitions   
Trofeo S.A.R. Princesa Sofía – Kiteboarding and Dragons return   
ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami preview   
Audi Melges 20 Class - Miami Winter Series   
Barcelona World Race - The South is looming.   
Island Water World Grenada Sailing Week announce new one design class   
Volvo Ocean Race 2014-15 Leg 3 position report for 19th January   
Pape Chevrolet North American Championships - Register today!   
Volvo Ocean Race: Sally Barkow - from the Olympics to the Volvo   
Volvo Ocean Race Leg 3 - The big casino *Feature   
C&C 30 Javelin makes West Coast Debut   


For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News







Sail-World.com  


















Switch Default Region to:

Social Media

Asia

Australia

Canada

Europe

New Zealand

United Kingdom


http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/Twitter_logo_small.png http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/FaceBook-icon.png  http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/RSS-Icon.png

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World

 

Contact

Commercial

News

Search

Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text

Feedback

Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery

 

Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery

Policies

 

 

 

Privacy Policy

 

 


Cookie Policy

 

 



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph contact the photographer directly.
XLXL WAS US
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT