Aussie sailors ready to make a splash in France
AUSTRALIA'S hopes of a top-five finish on the medal table at the 2012 London Olympics sank in the pool, but our sailors rode the crest of a wave off Weymouth, bringing home three of the seven gold medals won by Aussie athletes.
The Australian Olympic Committee has already pencilled in a similar result at next year's Games in Rio, and this week's ISAF Sailing World Cup off Hyeres in France will give a good indication of whether that expectation is realistic.
The regatta, which starts tonight, is the first major selection event for Rio and Australia has qualified 18 boats in nine of the 10 classes being contested.
Leading the way will be London gold medallists Nathan Outteridge and Iain Jensen (pictured) in the men's skiff-49er class, fellow Olympic and world champion Mat Belcher and new crew Will Ryan in the 470 dinghy, and three-time silver medallists Darren Bundock and Nina Curtis in the nacra 17 class.