Please select your home edition
Edition app (top)

Rio champ Giles Scott launches first tilt at Finn world title in three years

by British Sailing Team 13 Dec 2019 10:23 GMT 13-21 December 2019
Giles Scott © Lloyd Images / British Sailing Team

Olympic champion Giles Scott says he's got one eye on the 2019 Finn world title and the other on Tokyo 2020 as he returns to action next week.

Scott will take on the world's best at the Finn Gold Cup, the class's world championship regatta, in Melbourne, Australia, in the last major event of the year.

It will also be the first world championships he's competed in since taking gold at the Rio Olympics in 2016, the same year as his last world title.

In May Scott won his third European championship, and in October was among the first athletes picked for Team GB.

He's clear that he's out to win Down Under when the 74-boat fleet hits the water on Monday.

But with just over seven months until his Olympic title defence begins on the waters of Enoshima, the 32-year-old from Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire, says he can't lose sight of the bigger picture.

"World championships are always important, and this will be the first I'll have done this cycle," said three-time world champion Scott.

"It feels like this event is the start of next season rather than the finish of this one. In my mind the Olympic test event was the last event of the season, and it signalled the start of the year countdown to Tokyo.

"The worlds is obviously one that everyone wants to do well at, and of course I want to win. That being said, all the work we've been doing over the last month has been with the Games in mind as opposed to the worlds.

"It's a balancing act - of course I want to come here and do well, but I also have to use the time effectively ahead of the Games."

Similar to in the Rio cycle, Scott has held down two full-time jobs in the run-up to Tokyo 2020: campaigning his Finn and deputising to Sir Ben Ainslie in the Team INEOS UK America's Cup challenge.

While his time in the Finn has been limited, the shipping of Team INEOS's 75ft yacht Britannia to Cagliari in Sardinia has proved the perfect opportunity for Scott to put the hours in in Melbourne.

A month of training alongside the British Sailing Team's Finn contingent, including Ed Wright and Henry Wetherell, under the watchful eye of coach Matt Howard has proved priceless.

"Training's been going really well - I've been able to do quite a lot of Finn sailing over the past few weeks while our America's Cup boat is in transit," Scott added.

"I've had a decent three- or four-week training block in which is great news going into the worlds but also as a foundation for the year ahead.

"The venue's great and I'm looking forward to some great racing. We've had a lot of short, steep chop which is challenging in the Finn. A typical day has been 12 to 17 knots but December can be unpredictable, so it'll be interesting to see what we get next week."

While the weather isn't guaranteed, one thing that's for sure will be the high level of competition that Scott will face.

Among the line-up will be 2018 world champion Zsombor Berecz, 2017 winner Max Salminen and British compatriot Wright, the 2018 European champion.

Rather than cower at the prospect, Scott is relishing the opportunity to stamp his authority over his rivals.

"I've been getting excited about Tokyo for two years but now it's really starting to ramp up," Scott said. "The Games are just round the corner and it's time to get down to business."

Follow the British Sailing Team at

Related Articles

British team at ILCA Laser Standard Worlds overall
Hanson holds head high after challenging worlds British Laser sailor Elliot Hanson said he would walk away with his head held high from the Laser world championships in Sandringham, Melbourne, after narrowly missing out on bronze. Posted on 16 Feb
49er, 49erFX and Nacra 17 Worlds, overall
Gimson and Burnet battle to claim Nacra 17 world title Britain's sailors claimed two world championships medals in Geelong, Australia, with John Gimson and Anna Burnet crowned 2020 Nacra 17 world champions. Posted on 15 Feb
49er, 49erFX and Nacra 17 Worlds, day 5
Brits in medal contention as storms scupper Worlds racing Charlotte Dobson and Saskia Tidey in contention for gold in the 49erFX heading in to final day of racing. In the Nacra 17 John Gimson and Anna Burnet in second overall. Posted on 14 Feb
British team at ILCA Laser Standard Worlds day 4
Michael Beckett heads British charge in seventh European champion Lorenzo Chiavarini completes the gold fleet line-up for British sailors in 32nd. Former world champion Nick Thompson in 19th. Posted on 14 Feb
British team at ILCA Laser Standard Worlds day 3
Michael Beckett in to seventh overall A 5,8 helps Nick Thompson creep up the leaderboard in to 19th. Sam Whaley (74th) and Jacob Farren-Price (97th) miss out on gold fleet despite moving up in the standings. Posted on 13 Feb
49er, 49erFX and Nacra 17 Worlds, day 4
Dobson and Tidey remain defiant at top of the 49erFX fleet Charlotte Dobson and Saskia Tidey continue great form to stay top of the 49erFX with another set of top three finishes. Two seventh place finishes keep John Gimson and Anna Burnet on the Nacra 17 podium sitting in second overall. Posted on 13 Feb
British team at ILCA Laser Standard Worlds day 2
Michael Beckett the top Brit in 10th overall Wind holds around 8-12 knots. Two fifths moves Michael Beckett in to 10th overall and top Brit. Elliot Hanson one place back in 11th. A 4,6 puts Nick Thompson in to 26th. Posted on 12 Feb
49er, 49erFX and Nacra 17 Worlds, day 3
Dobson and Tidey take 49erFX top spot Final day of qualifying racing for 49er and 49erFX before splitting in to gold, silver and bronze fleets. Posted on 12 Feb
British team at ILCA Laser Standard Worlds day 1
Six Brits feature in the 124 boat fleet An opening race win and 17th puts Michael Beckett in 24th. Lorenzo Chiavarini just behind in 26th overall. Former world champion Nick Thompson in 44th with a 14,15. Posted on 11 Feb
49er, 49erFX and Nacra 17 Worlds, day 2
Brits top in two classes down under Dylan Fletcher and Stu Bithell lead British charge with two race wins and second place to sit top of the 49er. Also leading the way are John Gimson and Anna Burnet in the Nacra 17 with the help of two race wins. Posted on 11 Feb