Scott revels in margin of victory in Rio

Giles Scott admitted he enjoyed the '˜huge luxury' of having two days to reflect on his Olympics achievement after he sailed to Finn gold in Rio on Tuesday.

Thursday, 18th August 2016, 8:00 am
Giles Scott steps on to the podium to claim his Finn gold medal in Rio Picture: Richard Langdon/British Sailing Team

The Land Rover BAR bow/strategistwrapped up victory with the medal race to spare on Sunday.

And Scott went into Tuesday’s race knowing that, providing he successfully competed, he could not be knocked off top spot, with nearest-rival, Vasilij Zbogar (Slovenia) 24 points behind.

The 29-year-old was never going to go on a victory cruise around Guanabara Bay, and just as he has throughout the entire regatta, proved his dominance downwind as he moved from fourth at the first mark to second at mark two where he stayed.

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The race was won by Caleb Paine (USA), who claimed bronze, while Zbogar claimed the silver medal.

In the end, Scott enjoyed a 32-point margin of victory in Brazil

He said: ‘It’s not often you can say you’ve won an Olympic Games before the medal race.

‘We knew coming into Rio that the racing wasn’t going to be easy and, regardless of form, it was always going to be a hard week – and it certainly was that.

‘The initial hit I experienced after race 10 was the big moment where it really, really hit me hard.

‘But since then I’ve had some time to think about what we’ve put together over the last three years.

‘It’s incredibly good to be in a situation where we can look back and say now all the decisions we made back then all came good and were the correct decisions to make.

‘I had a particularly shaky start to the regatta but managed to pull through with some good consistency.

‘To win it the way I have, I couldn’t ask for it any other way.’

Scott’s victory means that Britain has now won the Finn men’s heavyweight dinghy class at the past five Olympics.

Iain Percy won gold in Sydney (2000), while BAR team principal and skipper, Sir Ben Ainslie, secured victory in Athens (2004), Beijing (2008) and London (2012)

And much had been made in the build up to these Games around whether Scott would be able to step into the history-making shoes left by four-time Olympic gold medallist and three-time Finn champion Ainslie.

Scott said: ‘Ben sent me a very nice good luck message before the regatta.

‘I haven’t spoken to him personally yet, but I will do.

‘There’s been an evolution, cycle to cycle, and information has been passed on.

‘It started with Iain in Sydney, and went on with Ben from 2004 all the way through to 2012.

‘I have really tried to evolve what’s gone before us, not sit on it and think it’s all been done, but work hard and try to make the Finn work for me.

‘I’ll never create a dynasty like Ainslie did.

‘I’m far too old already, but that doesn’t mean I don’t have my own ambitions in sailing and now I’m going off to the America’s Cup.

‘I’d love to be able to help bring that back to the UK and maybe I’ll do another Olympic cycle or maybe I won’t. At the moment I can’t say either way.

‘I’m going to have a few weeks off, but then the whip will come out I’m sure. I’m just looking forward to getting back home after the Olympic closing ceremony.’

n Lee-on-the-Solent’s Alain Sign will bid to add to GB’s medal haul on the water when he teams up with Dylan Fletcher in the men’s 49er (skiff) at 5.05pm today. They currently sit fourth.