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Posted on 7:29pm Wednesday 13th November 2013
Lijia Xu has now retired, and as the ISAF conference draws to a close so does another year. Despite saying that I would never work for the Chinese again I decided to go and coach Lily for her final Radial regatta: the Radial World Championships in Rizhao.
Posted on 6:25am Monday 22nd July 2013
Well I have now finished working for the Chinese Yachting Association and as I look back I see a whole host of achievements: Seeing Lijia Xu (Lily) standing on top of the podium to collect her Olympic Gold medal was the proudest day of my life, her speech as she collected ISAF World sailor of the year made me cry, and it was wonderful to end things on a high note, with Lily winning this year's Sail for Gold regatta with a day to spare. I wish her the very best for the future and I am now eagerly looking forward to new challenges for myself.
Posted on 1:45pm Wednesday 1st May 2013
The day before the Qualifier I go and see Stuart Offer of SOS Therapy, who not only releases my muscles but then proceeds to tape me back together using Rock tape. My shoulder is now feeling much better. I had a series of Cortizone injections earlier this year which helped in the short term and I will have another one before Delta Lloyd regatta as I want to avoid surgery if at all possible, as any surgery has risks and also means a long time out of action.
Posted on 9:35pm Sunday 7th April 2013
I am now back in the UK to race at the Radial Qualifier in Hayling Island to hopefully secure myself a place for the Radial World Championship. The good thing about the UKLA qualifier system is it is a first past the post system, you have to turn up, whoever you are.
Posted on 6:14pm Saturday 23rd March 2013
Well I have had a big break from full time coaching; everyone needs some down time even if it is just to reflect on what the next step is. I feel I want to be fully equipped before returning to the World Cup circuit with Olympic Gold medallist Lijia Xu.
Posted on 5:22pm Thursday 15th November 2012
Well the Rolex World Sailor of the Year awards last week now seem a very long time ago. It is always a very tough award but especially so in an Olympic year. I really do not think that there could have been two more worthy winners than Ben Ainslie and Lijia Xu.
Posted on 12:09pm Monday 29th October 2012
Well this year due to my involvement with the Olympics I was unable to attend any World Championships, however I hope to make amends by attending two in 2013: the Radial Worlds at the end of August/beginning of September in Ireland and the Radial Masters Worlds in December in Oman. As a result of this I will be taking a little bit of time off at the beginning of the season as it looks like a long 'racing' year next year. However 2012 was not devoid of Championships. I feel as a coach it is vital to race myself, to keep understanding fully the pressures that the sailors all go through.
Posted on 10:08am Wednesday 12th September 2012
Well it is over a month since the Olympic Medal race took place for the Radial class. A day which I will surely remember for the rest of my life. I have just returned from a well deserved holiday, perhaps the first of many over the next few months in what is always a quieter period after the games.
Posted on 11:24pm Saturday 4th February 2012
Lijia Xu has just returned from her second World Cup victory in Miami in the Laser Radial class (to add to her win at the first event in Melbourne) to make it two out of two in the series. Xu who is coached by Jon Emmett from Weir Wood Sailing Club had a difficult World Championship in Perth last year being caught over the line twice and also disqualified for a rule infringement on the first day when she tacked in too late at the windward mark. However she still did enough to qualify herself for a spot at this year’s Olympics in the Women’s single handed class.
Posted on 5:24pm Wednesday 28th December 2011
2011 has been another really enjoyably year for The Match Race Girls and three of us are delighted to have finished it another successful one having just touched down in Heathrow with Silver medals won at the ISAF World Championships in Perth, Australia.
Posted on 10:52pm Thursday 15th December 2011
Well I have just returned from coaching at the ISAF World Sailing Championships at Perth, Australia, and it was certainly an interesting regatta and overall a very positive one with so many learning points to take forward to 2012. From here the only way is up.
Posted on 12:42pm Monday 12th December 2011
Well we're still going with the repechage, just one more day left so the end is in sight now! Yes the event is starting to go on a bit now however don't get me wrong, we are still looking forward to racing tomorrow especially after another good day today having won 3 out of 4 races in really tricky conditions. On our boat Kate was the winner today as we had to do 4 laps in most of our races with legs of only 1 minute sometimes.....for those not quite with me, that's a lot of working getting the spinnaker up and down and still staying ahead of the other boat! It was pretty crazy conditions and tomorrow could be similar but hopefully we can continue to lead this round and go through into the quarters on Wednesday.
Posted on 2:03pm Friday 9th December 2011
Unfortunately our 4 wins out of 5 races today was not quite enough to put us through to the gold fleet. We ended up on the same points as Leroy (FRA) and Mulder (NED) however although we beat Leroy in the final race, the tie break did not go our way so we ended up 3rd in our group. Repechage starts tomorrow and will probably go on for the next three days, so time to start it all again! It will be another round robin of 16 teams with the top 4 going through to the quarter finals at the end of it.
Posted on 1:42pm Thursday 8th December 2011
Well the weather has improved in Perth at the World Championships today and the Race Committee were able to get in the final 11 flights of group A's round robin with USA and RUS securing their places in the gold fleet (and therefore quarter finals) and also securing their Nation Spots for the Olympics next year. Tomorrow it will be our turn in group B to finish our round robin and with 5 races left for us to complete, it will be an important day. The goal is to finish in the top two in our group so that we secure our own spot in the quarter final however it will not be easy so fingers crossed!
Posted on 3:25pm Monday 21st November 2011
Within The space of just a few days we are going to be experiencing completely different climates this week! This weekend at Queen Mary Reservoir we had a disappointing weekend only getting to race 4 races in the UK Open National Finals due to no wind and thick fog yesterday but tomorrow morning we fly to Perth and will step off the plane in 37 degrees centigrade and 20 knots of wind, sometimes I think we lead a very strange life!
Posted on 4:16pm Thursday 17th November 2011
Recently it has been a busy few weeks for Annie, Kate and I in the run up to our World Championships taking place in Perth over the first two weeks of December. After the announcement of our selection to the 2012 Olympic Team there was no rest, one week training in Weymouth followed by winning an event in St Quay, France. Then a week off before heading to Weymouth again then here we are now in Spain, just south of Barcelona training with the Russian team. We had a short break after the Pre-Olympic event in Weymouth in August but now we are very much into full swing until the Olympics next year and time seems to be going far too quickly!
Posted on 1:55pm Tuesday 18th October 2011
In July we went to the European championships in Helsinki and finished the week with a silver medal. It was very close racing all week, and we lead for some of the regatta, but in the end we got pipped to the line by the Croatian's.
Posted on 6:05pm Wednesday 21st September 2011
We’re delighted to announce that today we’ve been named as some of the first British athletes to be officially selected to compete for Team GB at the London 2012 Olympic Games.
Posted on 7:24pm Tuesday 6th September 2011
Well I spent most of the UK Radial Nationals trying to get a Chinese Visa and there were some very early mornings writing letters, booking flights and other administration duties, but it was worth it when it was finally done. In fact I was more pleased when I checked my Blackberry that my Business Visa had been sorted (allowing me to come and go freely over the next twelve months) than the fact that I had won the Nationals for the fifth time!
Posted on 11:39am Monday 8th August 2011
I am up in Ardingly at the moment finishing my packing for the world Championships in Norway. I’m really looking forward to a good end of the season. I had a frustrating time in Weymouth earlier in the summer but am confident I can put a good event together in a very hot competition. I’ve had a great two weeks in Weymouth enjoying the summer. I’ve done some 2.4 training in the bay which was awesome. It is so much better than the harbour. I’ve also had some great evening Sailing. Thanks to everyone who let me sail. So thanks to the guys on Rumrunner, Scoline, Draig O’r Mor, Mayfly, Aldebaran and Joe, James and my Dad who helmed for me in the Merlin. It was rather frustrating losing to Draig in the ladies race last night by 5 seconds but it was a great laugh on Scoline and it was a pleasure to sail with such a great crew. But good luck to Kay and the guys for the Fastnet.
Posted on 4:48pm Sunday 7th August 2011
Well yesterday was not really the day we were looking for when we headed out to race France in the quarter finals of the Olympic Test Event.
Posted on 10:42am Friday 5th August 2011
Annie, Kate and had a solid final day of the round robin yesterday winning all three of our matches and therefore qualifying us for the quarter finals against the French team helmed by Leroy.
Posted on 5:56pm Tuesday 2nd August 2011
Well folks we have definitely had better days on the water than we had today for the first day of racing at the Olympic Test Event, however we are not too down about it!
Posted on 11:07am Monday 1st August 2011
Tomorrow will be the first day of racing for us at the Olympic Test Event in Weymouth. We'll be the first class to start racing and it will be as close as we'll get in similarity to racing at the Olympics next year so we're really looking forward to getting started.
Posted on 10:13am Friday 22nd July 2011
We are just coming to the end of a great week training in Weymouth preparing for the Pre Olympic Test Event starting a week on Monday. We’ve had a good group of guys to train against and done way more starts than I can remember!
Posted on 6:35pm Tuesday 5th July 2011
Today has been a tricky and frustrating day for us. We started off with very shifty conditions and short courses, we had 3 races of the round robin 1 which we lost against Tunnicliffe, won against Souter and unfortunately were given a black flag (for three penalties...action packed!) meaning we are not allowed to continue racing against Leroy.
Posted on 10:16am Tuesday 5th July 2011
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Posted on 8:18pm Saturday 11th June 2011
What better way to see how you would perform in Weymouth in the summer than racing in Weymouth during the summer! It is therefore no surprise that for many federations the performance at this year’s Sail for Gold regatta is a key part of the selection for the Olympic test event in August.
Posted on 3:46pm Thursday 9th June 2011
We finished the gold fleet round robin today in 4th place so we're ready and rearing to go for the playoffs tomorrow. It's going to be a big day with quarter finals and then all being well straight into the semi finals so a possible 10 races. In our quarters we'll be against the Dutch team helmed by Mandy Mulder and if we win the best of 5 series we'd go through to race the winner of Barkow (USA) vs Lehtinen (FIN). The Dutch are a good fast team so I'm sure it will be exciting racing but we're feeling good about the day.
Posted on 12:38pm Monday 6th June 2011
Day one of Skandia Sail for Gold and Annie, Kate and I just got down to the venue. Although many of the fleets are still hanging around onshore, the Match racing started on time and now are moving onto the second group B. We are once again in group C this week so will be last on today to start our first round robin.
Posted on 9:48am Monday 6th June 2011
Today sees the start of the long awaited Sail for Gold regatta. There are a tonne of entries in all the Olympic sailing disciplines. I don't know exactly how many 49ers there are but they certainly take up plenty of space in the boat park.