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What a day for British windsurfing, the pain, and the glory!
With well deserved gold medals for Marina Alabau (ESP) in the women's and a total domination by Dorian Van Rijssleberge (NED) in the men's, Weymouth saw another fabulous day of Olympic RSX racing. It was planing conditions for both races, with a tight course close to the spectators and fans on the shore. With one of the highest viewing figures for any windsurfing TV show in the UK, we saw two well fought races play out in front of us. To see how much effort they put into driving those boards up and downwind, illustrates what talented and revered athletes they are. With roaring crowds on the Nothe foreshore, there was plenty of support for all the participants, but especially Team GB!
Nick Dempsey did all that was asked of him, sailing a solid race to secure a well deserved and impressive silver medal. This will no doubt go a long way to ease the pain of slipping to fourth back in Beijing. Today's scenes of Nick going ashore to embrace his family, friends and many fans, is an indication of what Nick has done for British windsurfing. So huge congratulations for Nick, his coach Barry Edgington (16 years working together!) and all the fabulous support behind with Team GB. His silver medal will sit well next to the Bronze he won in Athens. FABULOUSLY WELL DONE NICK!
For Bryony Shaw, the probability of a medal was there, but always a remote outside chance. But as ever, she gave it her all to the very end. She narrowed the points difference, but still ended up out of the medals in 7th place. It just shows how all the years of training, effort and desire can perilously shift from pleasure to pain as the Olympics unfold. Bryony has always represented GBR with all her tenacity, talents and emotions and won world championship events in the past. But it just wasn't to be this time in her home town.
Whatever the final outcome of the ridiculous decision to remove windsurfing from the Olympic Games in Rio, we should all be grateful for what Nick Dempsey and Bryony Shaw have done for British windsurfing. We should also be loud and proud of what a great sport and spectacle windsurfing can be.
So after all the hullabaloo of the Olympics, we should continue to celebrate Nick and Bryony's Olympic careers, get out on the water as much as possible and spread the word of what a truly amazing sport windsurfing has become.
I hope you've enjoyed our daily Olympic updates. It's been a privilege to be here in Weymouth in the thick of it all and also to have the chance to make a small contribution to the BBC commentary team.
I hope to see you on the water soon, be that in the UK or abroad. I promise no daggerboards or 9.5m sails!
All the best
Men RSX MedalsGOLD: Dorian Van Rijssleberge NED
SILVER: NICK DEMPSEY GB
BRONZE Przemyslaw MIARCZYNSKI POL
Women RSX MedalsGOLD: Marina Alabau Neira ESP
SILVER: Lee-El KORSIZ ISR
BRONZE: Zofia Noceti-Klepacka
7th BRYONY SHAW GB