James Peters and Fynn Sterritt have won gold in the 49er at the Sailing World Cup in Enoshima, and they're pretty darn happy about it. Andy Rice spoke to the British duo as soon as they stepped ashore for the medal ceremony....
Listen to the interview here....
If you want to download the MP3 file to listen to later, go to our Podcast page
Peters and Sterritt sealed the win in the 49er class in style by coming home first in the double-points medal race on Saturday, rounding off a dominant performance on Olympic waters.
The result comes at the end of a tough season for Peters and Sterritt, who were forced to miss four months on the international circuit due to injury.
Sterritt damaged his knee at the Princess Sofia Trophy regatta in Palma in April and required surgery plus months of intensive rehab, dealing the pair’s bid to win a spot at Tokyo 2020 a blow.
But after marking their return with a fifth at the Sailing World Championships in Aarhus, Denmark, in August, Peters and Sterritt set out to prove a point as the circuit took to Enoshima for the first time.
“We’re over the moon – ecstatic,” said Sterritt, 29, from Kingussie in Scotland. “It’s been an up and down week. We were really consistent early on in the regatta then struggled a bit, but to win like this is such a great feeling.”
The medal race started with Peters and Sterritt tied on points with Poland’s Lukasz Przybytek and Pawel Kolodzinski, and four points ahead of third-placed Kiwi duo Logan Dunning-Beck.
With less than 10 knots on the medal race course, they started strongly and coaxed their boat into the lead by the first mark.
From there they were able to comfortably defend their position, at times squeezing two knots more speed out of their 49er.
“We really found a groove today,” Sterritt said. “We knew it was going to be a tricky race but we stayed calm. We knew we could win under pressure, and we proved it today.”
Peters, 25, from Hayling Island, Hants, added: “This result shows we can perform in the venue that will host the Olympics in two years’ time, and that’s a real positive.”