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Dempsey inspired by sailing support

August 1, 2012 16:23 pm

Nick Dempsey was pleased to come out of Wednesday's "very, very difficult" men's RS:X racing unscathed.

The bronze medallist in Athens eight years ago started the Olympic regatta solidly on Tuesday, hauling himself up the fleet in both races to post a fifth and seventh. A poor start almost cost him again in race three, but he managed to finish fifth as over-riding favourite Dorian van Rijsselberge picked up his third successive bullet.

The Dutchman, though, was undone in the day's final race and could only come home third as Dempsey secured a photo finish victory over Greece's Byron Kokalanis.

"I did it for the crowd, it was all planned," the 31-year-old, who is now third overall, said with a smile.

"You always give it your all until the end and it is always worth giving it a go. I was pretty adamant that I was going to try and pass him. Normally you can't do what I did today, but it is the Olympic Games and you don't give an inch.

"It was a better day at the office and it was at the Nothe Course, which all the sailors are quite scared of because you can really come unstuck very easily.

"Today was no different so to come out of it unscathed I am quite happy about. It is very, very difficult and we have never really been on the course in that area with that wind strength in all the training we've done.

"It was pretty new to us and I didn't know what would work beforehand so it was kind of learning as you go. I feel like I got better and better throughout the day."

While struggling to deal with the conditions, the Nothe Course did see Dempsey cheered on from the shoreline by thousands of fans - something that has not been seen at previous Games.

"It was amazing, it is incredible and nothing like we've ever experienced," he said. "The fact they are British and cheering us is I suppose what a home Games is all about and makes it special."

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