Please select your home edition
Edition
Bakewell-White Yacht Design

Tom Slingsby – Gold at Last - What he said

by Rob Kothe and the Sail-World team on 7 Aug 2012
Tom Slingsby wins Gold Sail-World.com © http://www.sail-world.com
Dockside yesterday before the medal ceremony, the 27 year old Australian, five times Laser World Champion and now Olympic Gold medallist, talked through his day.

‘It is an amazing feeling. I have worked so hard for so long now. Last time (Beijing 2008) I put in so much hard work and came away with nothing and this time I put in so much more work and finally I am going home and I know that all the sacrifice I have made over the years wasn't for nothing. This time I have an Olympic Gold medal. I have been through the highs and lows of the sport that is for sure.

‘There is an element of redemption. If I didn't do well at this Olympics I would definitely have hung up my sailing shoes.

‘Last time I had won Worlds, World Cups, Europeans, everything going into China and the Olympics was the only thing and coming out of that, knowing it was a four year wait for a chance of redemption was pretty daunting. I am glad I stuck with it and had another crack.

‘This is the best day of my life. Hands down. I am the happiest guy in the world right now.

‘Nathe and Goobs (fellow Australians Nathan Outteridge and Iain Jensen - 49er series leaders) were there straight away, after I crossed the finish line. I told them to get out there and do their job and we are going to have a drink tonight together.

‘It means just so much more having your friends and family. It would be pretty empty if you came here and you did well but you had no one there to share it with. Tonight at the Cove, our drinking hole, we can all go there and meet and celebrate. It’s just the best feeling knowing they are here to celebrate with me.


'Medal wise, after seeing the girls win in the swimming I thought it is all going to take off from there, but it has all slowed down a bit. I hope this can kick start us. Being an Australian I know we have got fighting spirit and we are all going to fight to the end.'

Asked about the future, possibly in the Finn Tom responded 'I don't know. I think if I had come away without anything I would have stopped the Olympics for sure. Now I have a gold medal I don't know it, is a pretty amazing feeling. It is hard to think I wouldn't do it again.'

On his approach to the race: ‘Before yesterday I was thinking that I might just go and sail my own race but I went out to the Nothe and I watched the Stars and the Finns and I saw how easily you can lose a lead and I saw a gold medal slip through a couple of guys fingers yesterday.

'So I just said to myself 'that's not going to be me and I am not going to give him an inch'. If he could have lost silver I wouldn't have been like that but he had the silver locked away so I was never going to give him a chance.

‘It’s been an interesting week. Last night I did not have a great night’s sleep. I am someone who doesn’t really get too nervous in general but these last few days I haven't been getting much sleep at all.

‘This morning I was definitely nervous. I feel nervous when I am on shore and around the media but as soon as I got out there and with ten minutes to go, I was feeling fine and ready to roll.

‘No as soon as I get out there and get on the race track I have a full routine. I start checking the wind, the course and where I have to be and so I get into that. I forget everything else and am good to go.

‘In 2006 I was leading going into the last race but I had a bad drop and came up against my coach Michael Blackburn (this was before the double points medal race system.). He match raced me off the course and I needed a top ten finish and he could sail his drop. My fifteenth place meant he won the championship.

‘My coach then beat me and now he is helping me win a gold medal - pretty ironic I guess.

‘Today from the start he Cypriot understood how it was going to go down I think and he knew that I was going to be pretty harsh on him.'

How does it feel that now you have doubled Australia’s medal tally and we are almost catching up to the New Zealanders?'

‘I am just really glad and I am a very proud Australian and we have some of the best athletes in the world in my view.

'I might be a bit biased but I think the Golds will come and we will finish strongly and we will get right up to where we are supposed to be.’

Schaefer 2016 Ratchet Block 660x82Newport Boat Show 2016 660x82T Clewring - Generic

Related Articles

Dateline Rio - Sailing Olympics review - as good as it gets?
The Rio Sailing Olympics was widely judged to have been the best of recent times. The Rio Sailing Olympics was widely judged to have been the best of recent times. The weather was better than Weymouth and Qingdao, the courses more varied, but from a working media perspective, it was the people running the Rio regatta who really made the difference.
Posted on 26 Aug
Rio 2016 - Plain speaking by triple-medalist on Olympic sailing moves
Triple Olympic medalist, Santiago Lange has been on the sharp end of changes made to Olympic classes and formats Santiago Lange, a six-time Olympian and Bronze medallist in the 2004 and 2008 Olympics, won his third medal – Gold sailing in the Nacra 17 class. With that length of experience at an Olympic level, having sailed the Laser, Tornado and now Nacra 17 classes his comments on the future shape of the Olympic regatta was one of the highlights of the Medallists Media Conferences.
Posted on 25 Aug
An Q&A with Steve and Heidi Benjamin about the NYYC’s 2016 Queen’s Cup
Sail-World caught up with Steve and Heidi Benjamin to learn more about Heidi’s historic win in the NYYC’s Queen’s Cup. When it comes to U.S. Grand Prix sailing, it’s hard not to encounter the names of Steve and Heidi Benjamin. The two highly polished sailors have been successfully campaigning their series of yachts, named SPOOKIE, for years, starting first with a Carkeek 40 and progressing to their TP52. I caught up with Steve and Heidi to learn more about Heidi’s historic win in the NYYC’s Queen’s Cup
Posted on 19 Aug
Rio 2016 - Images of the penultimate race in the Finns - Scott wins
Sail-World's Richard Gladwell was on the water for the final race of the Qualifying Series of the Mens Finn Sail-World's Richard Gladwell was on the water for the final race of the Qualifying Series of the Mens Finn, in what potentially could have been Giles Scott's (GBR) Gold medal winning race. In the end, the current world champion won in style.
Posted on 15 Aug
Rio 2016 - Images from the Mens RS:X Medal Race
Sail-World's NZ Editor, Richard Gladwell, was on the water at the Medal Race for the RS:X class Sail-World's NZ Editor, Richard Gladwell, was on the water at the Medal Race for the RS:X class won before the race by Dorian van Rijsselberghe (NED) without needing points from the Medal Race. Nick Dempsey (GBR) was second on a similar basis.
Posted on 15 Aug
Rio 2016 - Sailors talk of Life at the Extreme on the Atlantic Ocean
Certainly the Volvo Ocean Race catchcry of Life at the Extreme is not a phrase associated with the Sailing Olympics. The 470 crews were suffering the mixed emotions of survival of an extreme test by nature, the cold, and for some elation at their placings, after Thursday's battle for survival. In conditions that looked more out of the Volvo Ocean Race, than an Olympic sailing regatta, crews battled 20kt plus winds and Atlantic Ocean rollers that towered up to four metres.
Posted on 13 Aug
Rio Olympics - Fourth gallery of images the fearsome Niteroi course
Fourth image gallery from racing on Day 4 in the Mens and Womens 470 class on the Niteroi course in the Atlantic Ocean Fourth image gallery from racing on Day 4 in the Mens and Womens 470 class on the Niteroi course in the Atlantic Ocean - sailing in 3-4 metre swells and 20kt plus winds. believe it or not the sea conditions were worse inshore as the fleet encountered the backwashed Atlantic rollers
Posted on 12 Aug
Rio 2016 - Third image gallery of 470's braving the Atlantic Ocean
Third image gallery from racing on Day 4 in the Mens and Womens 470 class on the Niteroi course in the Atlantic Ocean Third image gallery from racing on Day 4 in the Mens and Womens 470 class on the Niteroi course in the Atlantic Ocean - sailing in 3-4 metre swells and 20kt plus winds
Posted on 12 Aug
Gladwell's Line - The challenges of Guanbara Bay
The decision to run Medal Racing on the Pao de Acucer course, probably won't be remembered as one of the brightest The decision to run Medal Racing on the Pao de Acucer, probably won't be remembered as one of the brightest of the 2016 Sailing Olympics. Over shadowed by a 1300ft tall granite and quartz mountain in the shape of a sugarloaf, the bay suffers from dramatic windshifts, and huge variance in wind pressure.
Posted on 11 Aug
Rio 2016 - Fresher breezes expected inside and outside on Day 3
Stronger winds are expected for the third day of racing in the 2016 Olympic Sailing Regatta in Rio de Janeiro. Stronger winds are expected for the third day of racing in the 2016 Olympic Sailing Regatta in Rio de Janeiro. Two of the fleet scheduled to race outside on the Atlantic Ocean course off Copacabana Beach, while the 470 Men and Women will race inside on Guananara Bay.
Posted on 10 Aug