Goodison gunning for gold

Laser World Championship fires up today in Halifax, Canada

Thursday August 20th 2009, Author: Lindsey Bell, Location: United Kingdom
One year on from standing at the top of the Olympic podium, Beijing gold medal-winning sailor Paul Goodison will be gunning for a first ever world title as the Laser World Championships get underway in Halifax, Canada, this week (20-26 August).

The Laser Worlds is the one event that’s so far eluded the 31-year-old, and having remained unbeaten on the international scene since clinching Beijing gold in emphatic style, Goodison is determined to add a World Championship win to his otherwise impressive sailing CV.

Earlier this year the Skandia Team GBR star picked up back to back wins at the ISAF Sailing World Cup events in France, Holland and Germany, and also added a fifth straight European title to his belt this month in Sweden, after which he admitted he was hungry to be crowned World Champion.

“The Worlds has been the one win I’ve really wanted and the whole year has been geared towards preparing for that,” he explained.

This year’s results will have given the Rotherham sailor confidence, but with some 170 sailors from 51 nations set to compete across the six days of racing, Goodison will have to find his form once again if he’s to overcome the likes of defending World Champion Tom Slingsby from Australia, European silver medallist Javier Hernandez of Spain, or the in-form Croatian Tonci Stipanovic, and clinch the coveted world crown.

Also flying the flag for Skandia Team GBR will be Lymington’s Nick Thompson, who’s currently leading the ISAF Sailng World Cup series in the men’s single-handed class. Thompson saw a strong start to the season with wins at the Miami and Palma World Cup events, so a strong showing at the Worlds this year would cement his place as one of the key players in the class for this new Olympic cycle.

Development squad sailors Max Holloway, Robert and Stuart Godwin and Eifion Mon will be looking to make their mark in the senior fleet, as will RYA Volvo National Youth Squad sailors Robert Holmes, who won the Under 19 Laser European title in Sweden, and fellow youth sailor Alex Mills-Barton who came second.

Racing at the Laser World Championship will run from Thursday 20 to Wednesday 26 August.

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