It is not often that we see pure sporting dominance, the Olympics being the catalyst for many incredible performances and pushing athletes to their optimum levels. Today we saw Ben Ainsle win yet another gold medal, but shortly before Dorian van Rijsselberghe of Holland secured his first gold in style, with another two races still to take place.
Dorian built up such a lead on previous days, leaving the others to focus on silver even mid way through the competition. But it was with the most dominant race of the whole games, pulling out a lead of over three minutes over the next sailor, that Dorian officially took gold. It surely shows the dominance of the young Dutchman that he did not need to complete the final race today, and just needs to enter to medal race to win.
At only 23 years of age, although this may well be the last time windsurfing is in the Olympics it does not look like it will be the end for this Olympian. Kiters, watch out!
Some words from the man himself, gold medalist Dorian van Rijsselberghe:
“Yeah, I had a really good first race. Couldn’t have been any better, I got a big gain on the front, I was ahead of some of the other top guys, unfortunately they didn’t do as well as they should have done. So I got the points that I needed and that was it!
Second race, I pulled out. I felt I was in the way for the other guys, if I were in their shoes I would be telling me to bugger off!
Yes, I’ve cefinitely won! Even in the medal race I could cruise, but I’m not going to. I’m just going to try and have a good race. There should be a nice breeze, so why not.
It was always the dream to win an Olympic gold medal, and now the dream has come true.
This is pretty special, so another Olympic campaign would be nice. If it’s in kiting then so be it."
Tomorrow Boards will bring you a run down of the men’s and women’s racing going into the medal race, along with a full interview with Nick Dempsey and coach of Dorian, Aaron McIntosh.
Also tomorrow RS:X will be discussed on the RYA TV Channel, with myself (Amy Carter) and Penny Clark. Tune in tomorrow morning for further info!
Today's other coverage:
Bryony Shaw had a fantastic day today, with her first race win and a fifth position. This means it’s still possible, if the leading girls make mistakes that Bryony can take home a medal.
“Today was marginal winds, when it’s like that you have to make a call whether to sail off the fin or put the daggerboard down upwind.
The first race I won the pin so shot off, made an initial gain and crossed in front of the fleet, which was a nice position to be in. The rest of the race was then all about trying to stay with the girl from Finland, I had a great downwind leg. A couple of the girls, from the Ukraine and Brazil came back at me, but I managed to race on to first. I was racing really well in terms of positioning and tactics, it’s just a bit different from sailing on the fin.
I found my turbo button!
It was really hard work today because of the light winds. In the second race I was in a leading position, but pressure came from behind the girls were catching me up. I lost my lead and then it was a lot of hard work just on the final stage before the gate, a couple of the girls sneaked around the gate in front so I went from second to fifth.
I am still seventh overall, but the points are much closer. I’ve done a good to be in an attacking position, I am pretty sure the girls in the medal positions extended away, especially Finland, she had a great day with a fifth and a first. We both had a good day, she’s even closer to silver now but you never know. If I can attack on Tuesday anything is possible."
Head to the next page for an interview with Ben Ainsle.
He might not be a windsurfer, but Ben Ainslie is now the most successful Olympic sailor of all time. Boards caught a few words from him after he won gold in a closely contested medal race today:
“To win on home waters, in front of a home crowd, that’s just incredible.
It wasn’t necessarily the greatest (medal race) because the conditions were difficult. To race for an Olympic gold medal on that course is pretty hard, it came down to a split and it went my way. I’ve done a bit of homework on that course over the years, so I was confident that would work but it was really close.
I was confident, but you never know so that’s the nature of the game."
Check out the full gallery on shots and introduction to the racing on the next page.
Racing starts today at 12.00 for the RS:X women and 14.00 for the men, both racing two races on the Portland Harbour course.
Conditions today are forecast to be a little lighter, approx 8knots making to racing a little more tactical as the racers are on the edge of planing winds.
Before the action hots up today, Boards brings you some shots from yesterday's racing courtesy of Phil Holden www.philholdenphotography.com