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One gold, three silver for Australian Sailing Team in Rio

by Cora Zillich, Australian Sailing 21 Dec 2015 09:12 GMT 15-20 December 2015
Gold for Mat Belcher & Will Ryan at the Copa Brasil de Vela in Rio © Victor Kovalenko

Mat Belcher and Will Ryan finish off successful 2015 with Copa Brasil de Vela win

The Australian Sailing Team has won one gold (Men's 470) and three silver medals (49er, Nacra 17 and Laser) at the Copa Brasil de Vela in Rio de Janeiro on Sunday, 20 December 2015.

World #1 and 470 World Champions Mat Belcher (QLD) and Will Ryan (QLD) finished off a successful year with a win in the Men's 470 in Rio. The pair secured their second consecutive Copa Brasil de Vela title with one day to spare and after winning five out of ten races. A win in Sunday's top ten Medal Race and a 43 points lead over Britain's Luke Patience and Chris Grube sealed the deal on the Olympic venue with less than eight months to go to the 2016 Rio Olympic Games.

This sees Belcher and Ryan unbeaten on the Olympic waters after they also won the 2014 and 2015 Olympic test events. The Copa Brasil de Vela wraps up a successful year for the pair, including Olympic gold medallist Mat Belcher's sixth consecutive World Championship title and Will Ryan's third only two months ago.

Australian Sailing Team's Nacra 17 World #1 Jason Waterhouse (NSW) and Lisa Darmanin (NSW) conclude their 2015 with a second place at the Copa de Brasil behind current World Champions Billy Besson and Marie Riou from France. Waterhouse and Darmanin, who won the Rio test event in August, led the French pair by one point going into the final Medal Race. But a sixth place in the final race saw them finish the regatta in second behind the French, who won the Medal Race.

Also, London 2012 Olympic gold medallists Nathan Outteridge (NSW) and Iain Jensen (NSW) finished the event in second. The pair went into the final Medal Race in third overall and 14 points behind first after copping a 15 extra penalty points for rigging up on the other side of the river. A third in the final top-ten Medal race secured them silver behind Great Britian's John Pink and Stuart Bithell.

All three crews already secured selection to represent Australia at the 2016 Olympic Games at the beginning of December. See the AOC announcement here.

Still vying for selection are AST's Laser sailors Matt Wearn (WA) and Tom Burton (NSW). Tom Burton represented Australia at the test event in August to win bronze. At the Copa Brasil de Vela both Laser sailors were at the start line with Matt Wearn taking home a silver medal while teammate Tom Burton finished seventh.

In the Finn, Jake Lilley (QLD) finished off a successful regatta in fourth.

Australian Sailing's 49erFX crew of Olivia Price (NSW) and Eliza Solly (NSW) missed out of the Medal race in 12th. It was the first regatta back together for the pair after a knee injury at the Sailing World Cup in Weymouth/Portland in June had sidelined crew Eliza Solly for the last few months.

The final regatta of 2015 for Australian Sailing's aspiring Olympians came to a close on Sunday, 20 December 2015 local time. Eleven Australian Sailing Team athletes contested the event, which was held from 15-20 December 2015 on Guanabara Bay.

The regatta was part of a training camp at the Olympic venue with the aim to gain further insights into the complexities of the 2016 courses with less than eight months to go to the Olympic sailing regatta. Six of the seven designated 2016 racecourse areas were used during the six days of Copa Brasil racing. The event saw five days of fleet racing before a final medal race for each class on Sunday 20 December.

The international season will continue for Australian Sailing Team's crews with the Sailing World Cup in Miami at the end of January, followed by various class World Championships in February. See all events here.

Australian Sailing Team (AST) & Squad (ASS) 2015 Copa Brasil de Vela Results:

Men's Two Person Dingy – 470M
Mat Belcher (QLD/QAS) & Will Ryan (QLD/QAS) – AST: 1, 3, (19 OCS), 1, 1, 1, 5, 3, 1, 4, 1 – 1st

Mixed Multihull – Nacra17
Jason Waterhouse (NSW) & Lisa Darmanin (NSW) – AST: 6, 13, 8, (25 UFD), 12, 2, 3, 1, 4, 10, 1, 9, 8 – 2nd

Men's Skiff – 49er
Nathan Outteridge (NSW) & Iain Jensen (NSW) – AST: 1, 7, 2, (11), 7, 10, 2, 10, 3 1, 4, 3 – 2nd

Women's Skiff – 49erFX
Olivia Price (NSW/AST) & Eliza Solly (VIC/VIS/ASS): 5, 13, 6, 14, (15 ONS), 12, 11, 11, 10, 2, 6, 12 – 12th

Men's One Person Dinghy – Laser
Matthew Wearn (WA/WAIS) – AST: 1, 2, 11, 15, 8, 4, 11, 5, (25), 3, 9 – 2nd
Tom Burton (NSW) – AST: 8, 5, 4, 13,17,8, 25 20,16, 8 – 7th

Men's One Person Dinghy (Heavyweight) – Finn
Jake Lilley (QLD/QAS) – ASS: 5, 3, 6, 5, 3, 4, 4, 4, 3, 3, 7 – 4th

See all results here

Follow the Australian Sailing Team on www.australiansailing.org, Facebook, Twitter and instagram.

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