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Of the nine teams in 49er, 49erFX, and Nacra 17 that won medals in Rio, at least 1 team will not do so in Tokyo 2020. The five teams or sailors locked in selection battles won’t all make it to the next Olympic start line.
Since sweeping the 2016 Quad, Peter Burling and Blair Tuke went on to with the America’s Cup and the each narrowly missed out on winning the Volvo Ocean Race separately. Two years removed from the Olympic circuit, and with America’s Cup responsibilities, they are back in the 49er for another go. Hot on their heals, and beating them in winter training are fellow Kiwis Logan Dunning Beck and Oscar Gunn. Can the worlds best sailors beat their own team mates?
The Australian Nacra trial are spoiled for choice. The defending Silver medalists are rolling and have won three regattas in row. But 49er Gold and Silver medalist Nathan Outteridge has teamed up with sister Haylee, and they came 4th in their first Worlds. Only one team can claim the Australian spot, who will it be?
Eric Heil and Thomas Poessel (GER) took Bronze in the 49er in Rio and have been running at half throttle since then. Each is finishing studies, and only now getting back to full time campaigning. Three other German teams have top 10 finishes at recent worlds, including their Rio sparring partners Justus Schmit and Max Boeme. Can Heil/Poessel win their selection?
Katja Iversen took bronze with helm Jena Hansen (DEN) in a four boat shootout for the medals in Rio. Jena sailed Volvo while Katja studied, but after the duo returned to win the 2017 Worlds Jena decided to retire on a high from racing, and has moved into coaching. Katja has teamed up to crew for Alan Norregaard and these two bronze medalists from the skiff are mounting a late charge for the Danish Olympic berth. They must beat out team mates Lin Cenholt and CP Lubeck, who are in great form and were 4th at the 2018 Europeans. Only one can go!