Hannah Mills and Saskia Clark might have seen their lead at the Skandia Sail for Gold Regatta slip through their fingers yesterday, but they insist the experience will be invaluable for when London 2012 comes around.
The Olympic-bound 470 women’s pair headed into day three at the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy sitting pretty at the top of the leaderboard.
However Wednesday’s finishes of 13th and 14th, the latter a result they discarded, means the duo have slipped down to third overall, surrendering top spot.
Top spot is now occupied by France’s Camille Lecointre and Mathilde Geron, while New Zealand pair Jo Aleh and Olivia Polly Powrie sit second.
But having experienced all that Weymouth can throw at them over the first three days in terms of wind, rain and sunshine, Clark isn’t about to lose sleep over dropping a couple of places, firmly keeping the bigger picture of the Games well and truly in her mind.
“It was a pretty disappointing day actually,” Clark said. “We went in leading and we have come away with third. We just got it wrong.
“There were two breezes, one breeze in the left coming around the south and then the forecast was for a big shift right and we just got it wrong.
“But it is perfect preparation for the Games as it is really good to get a range of conditions which is definitely what we have had.
“This week is really important for us just to really learn lessons on the course area, come in off the water de-brief that with our coach, and write down what we think is working so that when we come to August we have a bit go a logbook to look back on for the days.
“It is the last big event before the Games and all the bits we need too improve on the next two months are going to be thrown out from this event.”
Despite no longer leading the pack Clark and Mills are still well placed to finish the regatta on Saturday with a medal around their necks.
And despite suffering a setback, Clark insists they are not about to shirk away in the second half of the competition.
“We have had six races so we are just over half-way through the regatta so sitting in third is fine,” she added.
“We have got some big breeze forecast coming up so we have a few really physical days of sailing so we are in good shape.”
Investment specialist Skandia is the principal sponsor of the British sailing team. For more information go to www.skandiateamgbr.com.
Ben Baker, Sportsbeat for Sportsister
The Women’s Sports Magazine