Two Gold for Aussies at Paralympics ahead of final races


Protest pending, Australia's Daniel Fitzgibbon and Liesl Tesch have defended their Two Person Keelboat (SKUD18) Paralympic title with two races to spare at the Rio 2016 Paralympic Sailing Competition.

Before day five started, Fitzgibbon and Tesch had already posted a remarkable six race wins and two second place finishes to put a 15-point gap between them and their nearest rivals from Canada and Great Britain.

Regardless of what John McRoberts and Jackie Gay (CAN) and Alexandra Rickham and Niki Birrell (GBR) did in race nine, the Aussies only needed to finish in the top four to ensure an unassailable lead, guaranteeing gold.

Almost predictably they finished with yet another race win to cap an emphatic title defense with the silver and bronze medals to be decided.

Fitzgibbon now boasts a Paralympic haul of two gold medals and one silver in the SKUD18, a run that started at Beijing 2008 when he sailed with Rachael Cox.

Partner Tesch won two silvers and a bronze in Wheelchair Basketball before teaming up with Fitzgibbon and winning back to back sailing gold medals. 


Colin Harrison, Russell Boaden and Jonathan Harris have won gold, pending any protests, in the Three Person Keelboat (Sonar) at the Rio 2016 Paralympic Sailing Competition with a race to spare. 

Sailing at a consistently high level all week, Harrison, Boaden and Harris take a 24-point advantage in to the final race of the competition which puts them out of reach of their nearest rivals, USA, in second. 

The gold will be a second medal for both Harrison and Boaden as they claimed bronze in Beijing 2008, sailing with Graeme Martin. It is Harris' first Paralympic medal.

The fight for silver and bronze will continue to the final day with USA and Canada in pole position for the remaining medals.

– Richard Aspland – World Sailing

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