Olympics, August 2012

Weymouth, England
Well, that was amazing!  We were blessed with good wind throughout the event as far as the RS:X was concerned, so the schedule was completed with the Medal Races on Tuesday 7th August.  Nick Dempsey earned himself a silver medal whilst Bryony Shaw finished 7th.

The team performed really well, with only one glitch which was a gate laid as a change mark that became too narrow by our standards.  Otherwise everything was great. We did our best to give the spectators the best experience possible by taking all finishes when we were on that course towards the mass of people.  The consequence of this was that we did not use a slalom when in the Nothe.


The role of each member of SolentXtra is listed & expalined here.

Everyone involved in the RS:X Race Management Team enjoyed the experience and were proud to have contributed to the 2012 Olympics.  

In an email to Rob, Rod Carr, Field of Play Manager said,

You and your team did an excellent job. The whole race management side of the regatta has received really good feedback from ISAF, OBS, Team Leaders and most importantly the sailors themselves!

I think we have set new standards in terms of; consistency of process, accuracy of course setting, target times, fairness and of course - the whole race experience on the Nothe.

You have led a truly world class race team - well done, and thank you for your support.

What was good?
- The standard of race management we provided.
- The camaraderie amongst the entire extended team and
- The way the team embraced those other volunteers who joined us 
  RS:X equipment, measurement, timing repeater boat crew, 
  additional safety crews and scorers.
- The relationships between the ITOs and the team.
- The support we received from the LOCOG senior team (with one   
  exception, who shall remain nameless).
- The meteorologists dedicated to the Olympic Sailing event who
  worked to a model with 300m centres.  The minimum centres
  Windguru works to is 9km. 
- Having Martin Stephens on the Bridge who understood everything 
  we were doing as you would expect.
- The pragmatic stance taken by the army at the security check 
- The food on the water - it was good!
- The sincere appreciation shown by Rob Andrews (Sailing Manager, 
  LOCOG), Rod Carr (Field of Play Manager, LOCOG), and Alastair 
  Fox (ISAF Technical Delegate) at the end of our part of the event.  

Rob (RO), Mike (DRO) and the three ISAF ITOs

What was not so good?
- Not having NTO uniforms for those who had trained for this event
  over a period of 4/5 years.  The 'one uniform for all' at the Sailing
  venue left those NTOs who wore the downgraded uniform as
- The failure of the transport system to accommodate what was
  only common sense.
- Not enough tetra radios especially amongst the mark layers who
  needed one each, when off-venue volunteers appeared to have a
  surfeit when they could have coped with one per station.  Even
  the guy cleaning the tables in the food hall on the Nothe had one!
- The attitude at times of some LOCOG paid personnel.
- The ISAF PRO, against our wishes, insisted on placing the course
  for the Medal Race too far to the right resulting in the opposite  
  effect to what was desired and then failed to thank any of the 
  team at the end of our part of the event.

Ahmed Habash represented Egypt.
He finished last in every race, but he was there!

The biggest event on the planet.  Millions if not billions of people will watch the racing that we produce.  The entire SolentXtra team is involved plus others, bringing the total to a staggering 40.  The others include some involed in safety, the Omega tracking system, RS:X equipment replacement, measurers and, of course, our International Technical Officers appointed by ISAF.

Ross Wilson (AUS) leads the ITO team with Ilker Bayindir (TUR) on the pin-end boat and Nathalie Peberel (FRA) on the finish boat.  We have worked with all three in the past and look forward to the Olympics with them.  They are there to ensure that we act without prejuduce or favour, something that would never happen but, in order to satisfy the worlds press and spectators, their positions are necessary.


at the Royal Southampton YC Commodore's Cocktail Party
on the evening of the London 2012 Opening Ceremony

The schedule is pretty easy with training for two days, racing for 3 before our first lay day, then two more full days to complete the fleet racing schedule.  After a last day off we have the Medal Races.

The forecast is pretty instable but we should therefore have wind.

The top men will be vying for the gold medal and Nick Dempsey (GBR) should be up there. Dorian Van Rijsselberge (NED) must be favourite though.

The Women is not so easy to predict and Bryony Shaw has just as good a chance as anyone.  

Event Microsite 

© SolentXtra 2012