In a significant boost to her London 2012 Olympic campaign, Annalise Murphy ended the Sail for Gold Regatta in Weymouth on Saturday with the bronze medal in the Laser Radial class.
The medal race final concluded an 11-race series that saw Murphy take five outright wins.
Just 10 boats from the original entry of 91 sailors in her class made the final cut of 10 places in the final though this was her sixth such race in the last year. Having led the class on Thursday, she slipped to third place going into the final.
A 33rd and 37th place in the earlier in the week in effect shut the door on a chance for gold, even though she could discharge one race.
Silver was a mathematical chance on Saturday, but protecting third place was a priority too.
The Netherlands’ Marit Bouwmeester squared up to Belgium’s Evi Van Ecker during the starting sequence and their fight for gold commenced. The two British boats competing for their national selection trials also covered each other closely on the line and while Murphy’s main threat was from France’s Sophie de Turckheim, both opted-out of confrontation.
On completion of the first lap of two, the French sailor was obliged to retire having been flagged three times by the International Jury under Rule 42 for propulsion using body kinetics.
A long-break to the left-handside of the course by Murphy for the second lap saw her place drop from third on the water to sixth by the finish but it was enough to secure the medal while there was Dutch gold and silver for the Belgian.
Ireland’s sailors return to Weymouth in August for the pre-Olympic test event.