Dempsey just misses gold but underlines prospects

Norwich's Nick Dempsey saw the slimmest of margins separate him from gold at the Weymouth and Portland International Regatta, but has vowed to not let lightning strike twice at London 2012.

The 30-year-old had battled with Holland's Dorian van Rijsselberge all week at the London 2012 test event, the two heading into yesterday's medal race miles ahead of the rest of the fleet.

Dempsey was guaranteed at least silver but had it all to do to claim victory, needing three windsurfers between him and his Dutch rival at the finish. But despite Dempsey's best efforts, crossing the line second, van Rijsselberge managed to finish fifth, taking the top step of the podium by just a single point. And after seeing gold slip through his fingers right at the death, Dempsey insists he will do everything he can to make sure it is a different story in 11-month's time.

'It was good in the medal race and I don't think I could have done any better but unfortunately I couldn't quite finish it off,' the 2004 Athens Olympic bronze medallist said.

'Everything went according to plan as I sailed Dorian down to last place and then got myself back up to second and there is nothing more you can do and I think one of the guys in front of Dorian fell of twice and that is what it comes down to.

'When you have to get other people between you then you have to rely on them and you can't do that really so I will have to make sure I am not in the same position next time.

'I am sailing very well, I seem to be in very good shape and I have been in good form so there are some good areas but still a little disappointed not to win. It was always going to be close and someone had to lose and unfortunately it was me but I will make sure it isn't the same at London.'

Most Read

Dempsey clearly enjoys sailing on the London 2012 waters, having also won gold at June's Skandia Sail for Gold Regatta and claiming the 2009 world title in Weymouth too. And after another positive outing, he isn't ruling out adding to his long list of happy memories on England's south coast, eager to put his fourth-place finish at the Beijing Olympics three years ago behind him at the first time of asking.

'The two Weymouth events this year were the important ones and a first and second at those two is good and now everything is focussed towards London 2012 next year,' he added. 'I have the World Championships coming up in Perth in December and while that isn't the most important event it is another chance to get some world-class racing in before next year. I need to go away and train now, make some new gains and be in better shape next year and hopefully it won't be so close in the medal race next time.'

• Investment specialist Skandia is the principal sponsor of the British sailing team. For more information go to www.skandiateamgbr.com