Dempsey brings second medal home to Dorset

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The Independent Online

There will be two medals going back from the XXVIII Olympiad to the home they share in Weymouth, Dorset, after Nick Dempsey executed a film script ending to his second attempt to win an Olympic medal in the windsurfing. The bronze will accompany the gold won by Sarah Ayton, after winning with Shirley Robertson and Sarah Webb in the Yngling last weekend. The pair should be enough to light the whole of the Dorset coast.

There will be two medals going back from the XXVIII Olympiad to the home they share in Weymouth, Dorset, after Nick Dempsey executed a film script ending to his second attempt to win an Olympic medal in the windsurfing. The bronze will accompany the gold won by Sarah Ayton, after winning with Shirley Robertson and Sarah Webb in the Yngling last weekend. The pair should be enough to light the whole of the Dorset coast.

Dempsey, from Peterborough, whose series included three wins and two seconds, was first attracted into windsurfing by the professional circuit, doing all sorts of trick sailing. But he discovered racing, loved it, and in his second Olympic games, has improved from sixth in Sydney to a huge medal hug from Ayton on the dockside as he was mobbed by the rest of the team. Coach, Barry Edgington said: "He deserved the medal after the race of his life."

Dempsey needed to win the 11th and final race, which he did, and for the leader going into the final race, Ricardo Santos of Brazil, to be 17th, which he was. That put the 24-year-old one point ahead of the Brazilian and, but for a late charge, he could even have snatched the silver from local boy Nikolaos Kaklamanakis, just one point ahead. The winner, Gal Fridman, took Israel's first gold in any sport since they started competing in 1952.

Spectators often do not know what is really going on, but when the participants do not know either, there is at least some explanation for the erratic behaviour of the Star keelboat fleet. A shocker of a 16th place in the first of the day's races was countered by a fifth in the second, and as everyone else was having a tough time working out the capricious wind pattern, Iain Percy and Steve Mitchell finished up sixth overall with three races remaining.

They are four points off the bronze medal slot held by Paul Cayard and Phil Trinter of the United States, but almost terminally separated from the gold medal position held by Torben Grael of Brazil. He, with crew Marcelo Ferreira, is chasing his fifth Olympic medal.

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