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Page last updated at 15:07 GMT, Saturday, 1 January 2011

Goodison hopes for strong Olympic preparation

Paul Goodison
Goodison won gold at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing

Olympic champion Paul Goodison believes wins in two key events in 2011 will be perfect preparation for London 2012.

Weymouth's National Sailing Academy, where Goodison regularly trains, will host both the Sail for Gold Regatta and a Olympic test event this summer.

"Trying to win both of them is what I've written down on paper," he said.

The 33 year-old, who triumphed in the Laser class in Beijing, is hoping to improve on the 2010 season, when he was outshone by Australian Tom Slingsby.

Goodison, from Rotherham, finished second to Slingsby in August's Sail for Gold event, also held in Weymouth.

Later that month he finished ninth, defending the Laser World Championship at Hayling Island, with Slingsby again triumphing ahead of Briton Nick Thompson.

Nonetheless Goodison is confident that his preparations in 2011 will stand in him in good stead for next year.

And he expects a good performance at the test meeting, after winning in the corresponding event in Qingdao four years ago, ahead of a fourth placed Slingsby.

"It's really going to be about spending quite a bit of time in Weymouth - April, May, June time - to then really perform the best at the first one, which is Sail for Gold, and then to try to take the momentum into the pre-Olympics."

Speaking last July Paul Goodison talks about his preparations for London 2012

"When it comes to the test event, it's a very different environment and an environment that I do well in because it feels like the pressure's on; it feels like it's the Olympics."

Goodison remains unperturbed by the 26 year-old Slingsby's form, referencing the 2008 Games, where the Australian finished 23rd after being considered a potential medallist.

"It's a little bit frustrating to keep getting beaten by the same Australian," he joked.

"It was a similar sort of situation before the Games in Beijing. Tom had won the two previous World Championships and was the very dominant force, but he didn't seem to pull it off."

Meanwhile, Goodison has had a better year in another class, which is not part of the Olympic programme, making his debut in the Melges 32 keelboat.

He worked as a tactician in a crew that triumphed in the European Championships, held in Italy in May.

Goodison will continue to sail the 9.7m boat in 2011, with a view to victory in the September's World Championships in Spain, before focusing solely on the Laser in the run-up to 2012.

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see also
Thompson takes world Laser silver
05 Sep 10 |  Sailing
Scott leads GB charge in Weymouth
14 Aug 10 |  Sailing
Brit Goodison claims sailing gold
19 Aug 08 |  Sailing

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