The 49er and 49er FX is a two-handed skiff-type high-performance sailing dinghy. The two crew work on different roles with the helm making many tactical decisions, as well as steering, and the crew doing most of the sail control. Both of the crew are equipped with their own trapeze and sailing is handled while “flying”.
The 49er was designed by Julian Bethwaite, the son of Frank Bethwaite, designer of the Tasar and the popular Laser 2 classes. The boat was selected by the International Sailing Federation after a series of trials for a high performance two person skiff and has been in every Olympics since its debut in Sydney Olympics of 2000.
Day Three and the 'cream is rising' - the 49er skiffs launched and the Finns cut through the water off Enoshima. The big story is the Lasers with the old guard leading the young guns - for some it's too late and for others it's within their grasp.
What a difference a day makes - with the trapeze harness weigh-in saga for Brazil and Ireland, Kiwi 49er and AC superstars on joint first and not forgetting the guaranteed Gold medal for Australian, Matt Wearn. No day is the same on the water - let alone the Olympic Games!
It's the start of the medal races and 'gongs' to be won. The RS:X Female and Male finish their five year journey but for other Olympic sailors they have either to wait or try and climb as high as they can before it's too late.
Matt Wearn takes Gold for Australia after dominating the Laser alongside, thankfully after Race 10, Anne-Marie Rindom (Denmark) in her Laser Radial. The pressure is on for Gold in all of the six remaining classes not just for glory but a pro career after the Olympics.
It was a British day on the water in Enoshima - four medla races and three podiums for the GBR Sailing Team. Huge talent and plenty of funding paved the way for Gold, Gold and Silver - but it was tight, very tight...
Ten classes - ten Gold medals. "The important thing in life is not the triumph but the struggle.." - for all of the sailors they put everything into their long road to Tokyo. Back to back Olympic champions became the norm but it was close. Great competition but no time to rest with only three yea...