World champion not going to the Games

Richard Langdon / Skandia Team GBR
Giles Scott on things to do when you don't get selected
The Olympic Games is coming up at the end of July and while we hold this up as one of the competitive pinnacles within sailing, there is an argument that it isn’t the ultimate decider of who is the best in each class thanks to the restriction placed on nation teams only allowing them enter one entry per class. Part of the reason for this is due to the number of competitors the International Olympic Committee allow into the sailing ‘event’. For London 2012 this will be a maximum of 380 sailors and as a result competitor numbers will only be around one third the size of, for example, last autumn’s multiple World Championship in Perth. So one has to think of sailing at the Olympic Games not as one does a World Championship or indeed any other regular regatta – it is a competition between the best crew from each country in each class. Subtly different. This of course makes the Olympics more inclusive internationally (‘universality’ as it is termed within the IOC/ISAF) with the opportunity for nations such as Barbados, Guatemala, the UAE, Singapore or the Seychelles to get their five minutes of fame on the world sailing stage and of course this is very much part of the Olympic spirit. But not all sports in the Games have sailing’s one team per country per event entry criteria. In athletics for example, the lower ranked nations are allowed into the Games in the same way as they are in sailing, but stronger nations are allowed to field up to three athletes in each event. The end result is a much more accurate pecking order as one might get at a World Championship. It also means that most of the top athletes do get to compete at the Games and there isn’t