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Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Goodison too good, dominates fleet for Laser gold


Goodison celebrates. (Photo credit: Clive Mason/Getty Images)

Paul Goodison of Great Britain clinched gold in the Laser (Men's One Person Dinghy) with a ninth finish in the medal race and an overall point total of 63, eight points ahead of Vasilij Zbogar of Slovenia who finished second in the medal place to claim silver. Goodison, who finished fourth in Athens, added to Great Britain's impressive gold medal -- making it three gold so far for his NOC. Diego Romero of Italy, an early leader in the regatta, grabbed bronze with 75 points overall.

Goodison came into the medal race 18 points ahead of his nearest rival, so all he had to do was keep Rasmus Myrgren of Sweden from finishing first. The Briton sat on top of his Swedish adversary throughout the two lap windward/leeward course at the back end of the fleet.

"It was quite tricky and pretty stressful," Goodison admitted. "I waited to make sure that I got the gold at the end of the day -- and there was only way to guarantee it. Sweden knew it was coming too -- but I just had to do what I had to do."

Goodison's actions also cost the Swede a medal even though Myrgren went into the race in second place overall.

Race winner Andrew Murdoch of New Zealand threw everything at Zbogar to try get rid of of the Slovenian in the light shifty airs, knowing it would cost him the bronze medal, but like Myrgren, the New Zealander missed out.

"It was really shifty, so it was hard to choose which course to take," the Slovenian sailor said. "I was able to sail my own race, as Britain was keeping an eye on Sweden. I think I had an advantage because I have already won bronze at Athens, so I didn't feel pressure and make mistakes."

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