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Final battles for Sarah Douglas to qualify for the Laser Radial Medal Race at Tokyo 2020 Olympics

by Sail Canada 29 Jul 2021 11:51 PDT 25 July - 4 August 2021
Sarah Douglas (CAN) on Tokyo 2020 Olympic Sailing Competition Day 5 © Sailing Energy / World Sailing

Toronto sailor Sarah Douglas will aim for a spot in the medal race of the Laser Radial event at the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo with the presentation of the last two preliminary races in her class tonight at 11:05pm and approximately at 12:20am (Eastern Time).

Currently in the eighth spot after eight races, the athlete from the Ashbridges Bay Yacht Club (ABYC) needs to finish the preliminary competition in the top 10 to get her ticket for the medal race, which is to be held overnight Saturday into Sunday (ET) in Enoshima.

"I had fun out there today. I definitely made mistakes today but overall, I'm pretty happy with how I'm sailing and I'm looking forward to finishing up the event," said Sarah Douglas. "We're going to be on an interesting course as the waves are kind of like a washing machine. It's always tricky, but I think I can manage through it and I practiced a lot in that situation. I will always strive for a medal and that's always going to be the goal. But I'm just looking to have another solid day and improve on my racing and stick to the process as always."

It would be the first time since the 2012 Olympic Games that Canada will have at least a representative in one of the medal races. Zachary Plavsic, on the men's side, and Nikola Girke, on the women's side, took part in the Medal Race in the RS:X class to finish respectively 8th and 10th.

In her eight races so far, Sarah Douglas earned two fourth-place finishes while she was 5th, 8th, 13th, 18th, 24th and 26th in the other contests. She currently has 76 points, which puts her nine points ahead of the 11th spot held by Elena Vorobeva from Croatia, who has 85 points. Anne-Marie Rindom from Denmark is leading with 25 points, followed by Tuula Tenkanen of Finland (46 points) and Josefin Olsson from Sweden (47 points).

The points that each athlete/team earns during the preliminary races are carried forward with them into the medal race and points are doubled in this final event. Throughout the competition, sailors are scored by the position in which they finish (for instance: 1 point is awarded for position 1). The worst result registered by each competitor/team is discarded. The sailor with the lowest point total at the end of competition wins the title.

Sailing fans can watch Sarah Douglas race:

Canadians in action tonight in the sailing events:

  • Sarah Douglas (Laser Radial): races 9 et 10 / 10 - 11:05pm (ET)
  • Jacob Saunders and Oliver Bone (470): races 5 et 6 / 10 - 11:05pm (ET)
  • Will Jones and Evan DePaul (49er): races 7, 8 et 9 /12 - 11:05pm (ET)
  • Ali ten Hove and Mariah Millen (49er FX): races 7, 8 et 9 / 12 - 1:50am (ET)

Nikola Girke's fifth Olympic Games come to an end

On Thursday, Nikola Girke from West Vancouver, B.C., ended up in the 23rd spot in the RS:X women's competition after finishing 25th, 21st and 20th in her last three races.

"I had two fantastic starts and while I wasn't able to keep my positions, I was more in touch with the top of the fleet and raced the best I could to finish on a high note," said Girke. "I know I can do better and based on what happened last year and my preparation, I'm more than happy with what I did in Tokyo. You don't need to bring back a medal to be a champion!

As a 5-time Olympian, Nikola brought a veteran presence and leadership to this Canadian team which was comprised of five athletes, out of a total of nine, who were making their Olympic debut.

"I'm now coming home and I will definitively continue to windsurf for fun, and who knows what can happen looking ahead to 2024. Never say never!", she added, as foiling windsurfing will replace the RS:X events at Paris 2024.

More information is available through Sail Canada's website at

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