HAMPSHIRE dinghy stars Nick Thompson and Pippa Wilson set their campaigns for Olympic glory on track with bronze medals at the official test event in Rio.
Thompson was on track for gold in the medal class but had to settle for the third place on the podium after he was injured in an on-water collision on the penultimate day of racing.
Lymington’s Thompson, 28, was forced to watch the deciding medal race from his hotel room – but his closest competitors failed to capitalise on his absence and he won bronze.
Beijing gold medallist Wilson, also from Lymington, and crewmate John Gimson were late call-ups to the British squad after Lucy Macgregor and Andrew Walsh pulled out due to injury.
But the pair pinched bronze in the new Nacra 17 multihull class to help Team GBR on their way to an eight-medal haul at the two-years-to-go test event.
Thompson and Wilson have both chalked the results up as progress in their bids for victory at the event proper in 2016.
“The biggest thing for me was that I was able to sail so well here,” said Thompson. “I managed to put together a really solid series and I certainly feel very comfortable in Rio now.”
Wilson and Gimson finished second in the medal race to snatch bronze.
“It was a mental race – I guess we expected that.” Wilson said.
“We were basically level with everyone around us and so we just had to try and sail the best race we could. ”
The event saw a win for Giles Scott in the Finn, the class which has been dominated by Sir Ben Ainslie for the past decade.
Alison Young won silver in the Laser, as did Luke Patience and Elliot Willis and Hannah Mills and Saskia Clark in the 470 mens and women’s fleets.
Ed Wright picked up bronze in the Finn class and Dylan Fletcher and Alain Sign scored bronze in the 49er.
“It’s been a fantastic end to the first Rio Test Event,” said team manager Stephen Park.
“We were in there competing for gold medals certainly in four of the events and to be racing out for the podium in every single one of the ten events is a fantastic place to be.”