Sunday, August 17, 2008

Ben Ainslie wins third Olympic gold in Finn medal race

[Source: ISAF] Ben AINSLIE of Great Britain joined the list of sailing greats today as he raced to victory the Finn Medal Race at the Qingdao Olympic Sailing Center to win his third consecutive Olympic gold medal.

Ben AINSLIE (GBR) led today’s Finn Medal Race from start to finish in big seas and a strong 15 knot breeze. AINSLIE’s Olympic tally of one silver and three gold medals put him alongside Valentin MANKIN and Jochen SCHUEMANN. Only Danish sailing legend Paul ELVSTRÖM has won more Olympic gold medals, with the four he won between 1948 and 1960.

Ben Ainslie sails to gold medal in Finn. Qingdao, 17 August 2008. Photo copyright Juerg Kaufmann

In big seas and a strong 15 knot breeze AINSLIE led at the top mark and controlled the race from there, extending on the upwind legs to take victory and the Olympic gold medal in style.

American Zach RAILEY finished sixth in the Medal Race, good enough to ensure he held on to the Olympic silver medal. Guillaume FLORENT of France won the battle for the bronze medal, finishing fourth in the Medal Race, crucially three places ahead of his bronze medal rival Daniel BIRGMARK of Sweden.

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