Long road to London

Victorious in Australia, Paul Campbell-James updates us on his 49er campaign
While Skandia Team GBR continues to bask in glory, its Gold medallists picking up the Raymarine/YJA Yachtsman of the Year award, that latest in a several of accolades that has included OBEs and even a CBE for Ben Ainslie, a slightly less glamorous tale is that of the British 49er crew of Ben Rhodes and Stevie Morrison at the Games. Surefire favourites when they arrived in Qingdao with two World Championship wins under their belt, Rhodes and Morrison ended the regattas in a disappointing ninth place. Of course with the next Games being held in home waters, the fight for Olympic selection will be even tougher this year, a situation made no better with the demise [at present] of the Tornado that has seen several cat sailors such as Andrew Walsh and Chris Rashley take to the Olympic skiff. Getting off to the strongest start among the Team GBR 49er Olympic hopefuls have been Paul Campbell-James, of the well known sailing dynasty and Mark Asquith, once upon a time Paul Brotherton’s crew. The duo have been together for around three years since Asquith recovered from a very serious motorcycling accident. “We have been wanting to do as many events as possible and put in as much time as possible while all the Olympic crews are having time out, just so we can get a good jump on people this year. We were able to have a bit of a break while the Olympics was on, so we could come back on it pretty strong,” Campbell-James told us. Over recent weeks he and Asquith have been down under, competed in Sail Sydney and Sail Melbourne and impressively won both, although it of course can be argued that the crème of the international fleet were not competing at these. We spoke to Campbell-James when