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2012 Olympics - J P Tobin talks about preparing for RS:X windsurfing

NZ Herald (17/6/2012): On August 7 boardsailor Jon-Paul Tobin will carry a proud New Zealand legacy for what appears to be the final time. Windsurfing will cease as an Olympic sport on that date with the men's medal race off Weymouth on Britain's Dorset coast. It has been one of New Zealand's most successful Games disciplines since its introduction in 1984 (for men) and 1992 (for women).

Sail for Gold - Gold for NZ but not JP Tobin in RS:X windsurfing

Jo Aleh and Olivia (Polly) Powrie have won Gold at their Olympic 470 dress rehearsal event, and Paul Snow Hansen with Jason Saunders have achieved bronze. J P Tobin finishes 9th in the RS:X windsurfing.

After a week of tumultuous weather at the Skandia Sail for Gold regatta in Weymouth, the sun finally came out and the wind moderated to a perfect 15 knots for the Lasers medal race. It started to build for the following 470 races, and then a fresh 20-22 knots for the RS:X windsurfer in the early afternoon.

Extreme wind cancels racing at Sail for Gold - JP into medal round RS:X windsurfing

All racing was cancelled on day four of the ISAF Sailing World Cup regatta Skandia sail for Gold, as Thursday afternoon’s storm continued overnight and all day Friday at the 2012 Olympic sailing venue in Weymouth.

The Paralympic classes were the first to be cancelled in the morning, but other classes had longer to wait until racing was called off for everybody at 2:30pm local time. For most sailors, this signalled an early end to their regatta. The Paralympic classes were always scheduled to end one day before the rest.

Sail for Gold - JP Tobin continues to improve in RS:X windsurfing

JP Tobin in the men’s RS:X fleet saw wind speeds of up to 35kn in the afternoon before all other racing was called off. JP thrived in the big breeze, finishing both races in 4th place and improved his overall ranking to 7th. His training partner Dorian Van Rijsselberge has improved to second. Natalia Kosinska has slipped back to 17th in the womens RS:X.

Sail for Gold - Kiwi RS:X windsurfers move, Tobin up, Kosinska down

A slightly better day including a 3rd saw JP Tobin move back into the top 10 (9th) while Natalia had her two worst results and slipped back to 15th.

Sail for Gold - Kiwi RS:X windsurfers slip outside top 10

After yesterday’s light winds, racing is now back on schedule at the Weymouth Olympic sailing venue and the kiwi presence is starting to shape up. J P Tobin and Natalia Kosinksa both slipped slightly to 11th in the RS:X classes on day 2. This is the last chance for NZ to get an entry in the womens RS:X event at the Olympics.

Sail for Gold - Mixed start for kiwi RS:X windsurfers

Natalia Kosinska in the Women’s RS:X finished inside the top ten for both of her races, and goes into day two in 9th overall. JP Tobin got down to business in the RS:X men’s second race of the day, after a slow first race where he finished 19th. Only a few seconds separated the top eight finishers in this second windsurfing race; JP finished 6th right amongst the lead pack, in which anybody could have won. Overall after the first two races, JP sits in tenth.

Sail for Gold Weymouth regatta preview - NZ RS:X sailors included

The NZL Sailing Team and several other New Zealand Olympic and Paralympic class sailors are preparing for the biggest ISAF World Cup regatta of the season; the 2012 Skandia Sail for Gold regatta is due to commence on Monday June 4th. RS:X (men’s) JP Tobin, RS:X (women’s) Natalia Kosinska and Steffanie Williams are competing.

RS:X & Techno team are at the Auckland Hutchwilco Boat Show 17-21st May

Great looking set-up, check out their web site RS:X Techno NZ. They are giving away free lessons so get your friends, especially the ones with kids to call by the stand.
When the going gets tough ... these guys are rising to the challenge and deserve our support - if anyone can think of a way to help them, get in touch.

Windsurfing is still in the Olympics.

Rather than squabbling over the spoils of 2016 Olympics decision to switch from windsurfing to kiteboarding, the value of which is still unknown, Windsurfing New Zealand (WNZ) believes we should be focussing on supporting our current 2012 Olympic competitor J P Tobin. They also think the victims of the recent decisions deserve more support than they have received so far.

In about 70 days the 2012 Summer Olympics will begin, and windsurfing will be there. Jon-Paul Tobin sailing in the RS:X windsurfing class is one of our best prospects of a medal. We should not lose sight of that fact.

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