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Olympic Gold Medallist Sarah Ayton to Speak at RYA Dinghy Show

11th November 2019
British Olympic Gold Medallist Sarah Ayton OBE British Olympic Gold Medallist Sarah Ayton OBE

Over the weekend of 29 February- 01 March, double Olympic Gold Medallist Sarah Ayton OBE will be joining forces with British Sailing Team’s Sam Whaley at Alexandra Palace to host a fantastic range of expert speakers on the Great Hall and West Hall Stages and in the Knowledge Zone.

Sarah is famously known as one of the ‘three blondes in a boat’ trio from the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games where she won her second gold medal in the Yngling class. She was also named Rolex World Sailor of the Year in 2016 and is currently a performance coach, motivational speaker and busy mum to her two boys.

“I’m really looking forward to presenting the show,” she said. “I remember going to the Dinghy Show with my parents aged ten and looking at all the boats and wanting them all!

“Whatever your level of sailing there’ll be loads you won’t want to miss this time. We’ve got some really inspirational speakers lined up including adventure cruisers on the Great Hall Stage and world-class coaches in the Knowledge Zone. We hope to see you there!”

Sam Whaley initially enjoyed racing at his local sailing club before entering his first national competition in 2011. After that he was hooked and at 19 he knew he wanted to pursue a career in sailing. He is now a member of the British Sailing Team competing in the Laser class.

“It’s a real honour to be hosting the Dinghy Show alongside an Olympic Gold Medallist” Sam commented. “The show means so much to me, whether it’s seeing all the new and existing boats, entering all the competitions on the stands as a kid or simply finding out a lot more about sailing”.

The 2020 show theme is ‘a world of opportunity- see where dinghy sailing can take you.’ From competing on the race course, to travelling the globe, an exciting career on the water, or simply spending valuable time outdoors with family and friends, the show will celebrate the unique wealth of opportunities that dinghy sailing provides.

“I think the theme is very relevant.” Sarah continues. “I’ve been very fortunate to live my whole life sailing from learning at Queen Mary Reservoir to competing at two Olympic Games. I’ve sailed all over the world making friends for life and now having retired from Olympic sailing I’m starting that journey with my children and it’s a sport which we can all do together”. 

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