6 months to go for Rio 2016 Olympic Games and Laserista.com wanted to review history of Sailing and show you who were all Laser Olympic medalists up to date. Check it out!
Atlanta 1996, first time for Lasers at the Olympics
Atlanta 1996 meant first Olympic Games for the Laser class. Remember boat was designed by Bruce Kirby in 1969 and presented to public in New York’s Boat Show in 1971 (you can check our Spanish article “Breve historia del Laser” for further information about Laser beginnings).
Eleven races were scheduled and sailed in Savannah, Georgia, USA. Each sailor had two discards. Brazilian Robert Scheidt and British Ben Ainslie fighted up to the end and were both finally disqualified on 11th race. So this were our first Laser Olympic medallists;
- Robert Scheidt BRA – Gold – [2-
9-3-6-1-3-7-2-1-1- 57 DSQ] – 26 pt.
- Ben Ainslie GBR – Silver – [
28-4-7-2-2-1-2-1-16-2- 57 DSQ] – 37 pt.
- Peer Moberg NOR – Bronze – 46 pt.
Sydney 2000, Ainslie’s revenge
Four years later the Laser class leaders were still Scheidt and Ainslie, but this time British sailor won Olympic Gold medal in a memorable fight with Robert;
- Ben Ainslie GBR – Gold – [
22-1-1-3-4-4-10-11-4-4- 36] – 42 pt.
- Robert Scheidt BRA – Silver – [1-2-
22-1-12-1-20-5-1-1- DSQ 44] – 44 pt.
- Michael Blackburn AUS – Bronze – 60 pt.
Peer Moberg NOR ended 10th this time with 94 units.
Athens 2004, Scheidt is back on top
This time Sailing Olympic venue was Agios Kosmas Olympic Sailing Centre. Eleven races were scheduled and completed with one discard. 42 sailors, on 42 boats, from 42 nation competed.
Ben Ainslie GBR moved to Finn class (and won Finn Olympic Gold medal), so Scheidt had it less difficult this time and got his second Olympic Gold medal;
- Robert Scheidt BRA – Gold – [3-8-1-3-8-4-
19-12-7-3-6] – 55 pt.
- Andreas Geritzer AUT – Silver – 68 pt.
- Vasilij Zbogar SLO – Bronze – 76 pt.
Beijing 2008, British are back on top
Eleven races were scheduled and ten finally completed in Qingdao, China, including last one as Medal Race. 43 sailors, on 43 boats, from 43 nations competed. Ten boats qualified for the medal race.
With Ainslie on Finn and Scheidt now racing on Star (by the way both winning their respective Gold medals) it was time on the Laser class for a new name claiming the Olympic Gold position in Beijing, and that was British sailor Paul Goodison, who sailed right to victory and gained first Olympic spot;
- Paul Goodison GBR – Gold – [15-2-15-19-7-1-4-6-9 + 18 (9th) in MR] – 63 pt.
- Vasilij Zbogar SLO – Silver – [2nd in MR] – 71 pt.
- Diego Romero ITA – Bronze – [3rd on MR] – 75 pt.
London 2012, nor British or Brazilian this time. A new Nation winning Laser Olympic Gold medal
Weymouth and Portland were venue for the London 2012 Sailing competition, fifth time for the International Laser class (the first one Laserista.com covered here), and this time there was no room for British or Brazilian sailors on the Laser podium, although Goodison was competing at home but couldn’t gain his second Olympic medal, finishing 7th (3rd on MR) in competition.
Great Laser sailor Tom Slingby AUS showed his best performance in UK and claimed first Laser Gold medal for Australia. Silver was for Pavlos Kontides CYP, in a memorable final battle with Slingsby on the Medal Race. This were results on the last Laser Olympic competition;
- Tom Slingsby AUS – Gold – [2-1-2-6-9-2-14-1-1-1 + 18 (9th) in MR] – 57 pt.
- Pavlos Kontides CYP – Silver – [10th in MR] – 71 pt.
- Rasmus Myrgren SWE – Bronze – 97 pt.
So now you know there were 5 Olympic competitions for the Laser class up to date; 2 won by Brazil (Robert Scheidt x 2), 2 won by Great Britain (Ben Ainslie + Paul Goodison) and 1 by Australia (Tom Slingsby).
Counting all 15 Laser Olympic medals they are also leading rank BRA and GBR with 3 medals each, followed by AUS and SLO with 2, and a single one for NOR, AUT, ITA, CYP and SWE.
Laser Olympic sailors rank is leaded by Robert Scheidt (2G + 1S), followed by Ben Ainslie (1G + 1S) and Vasilij Zbogar (1S + 1B).