49er Flash Quotes...
What 49er pair Stevie Morrison and Ben Rhodes had to say at the TeamGB media conference at Weymouth yesterday
On their late selection and preparation:
"There are pros and cons to when we were selected. We would have liked a little bit more time. But we've turned over a lot of stones and found a lot of answers."
On whether late selection affected their medal chances:
"I don't think it's affected our medal chances. We would have seen a lot of benefit to have been selected a year ago. It's meant we were pushed hard and that, equipment-wise, we've been fairly lastminute.com.
"We've had three boats to test from different manufacturers, a few masts and five sets of sails. Whereas, you talk to the 470 sailors or Percy and Bart in the Star or Ben in the Finn and they've been doing that since last October. We've been doing that since the 14th of May.
"But we feel very ready to go out there and do well. We beat Nathan Outteridge and Iain Jensen last year, we were the last team to do that in a World Cup regatta."
On their new coach Paul Brotherton:
"We've worked with Paul on and off for five years. When he says something it's generally worth listening too, except when it's football. He's quite keen on Man U, personal choice (laughs), but his technical advice is second to none."
On their medal competitors:
"Going by results, then Nathan OUTTERIDGE (AUS) and Iain JENSEN (AUS) deserve to be favourites. But there's a very strong team from Great Britain, France (Emmanuel DYEN/Stephane CHRISTIDIS, FRA) and the Spanish guys (Iker MARTINEZ de LIZARDUY/Xabier FERNANDEZ GAZTANAGA, ESP) have been round the world three times since the last Olympics but you'd never count them out. 49er racing is crash and burn and it will be a really tight fight for the medals. Nathan (OUTTERIDGE) and Goobs (Iain JENSEN) have already got the medal hung round their neck if you read their papers, but there can be plenty of bogies to be found on race courses as well as golf courses."
On a possible home advantage:
"Ben and I have grown up doing a lot of sailing in Weymouth and always done quite well. You see a 100m track and it's the same whether it's in Beijing or London, so Usain BOLT (JAM) has got a pretty good idea of what he's got to do. A racecourse in Beijing is massively different to Sydney, which is massively different to here. We've 15 to 20 years of experience that's telling your gut to make a decision. The 49er is fairly random racing and the long-range forecast suggests it could be fairly fresh next week so you'll see some snakes and ladders racing. The Nothe course is really short and sharp and quite gusty, shifty wind. But we also have 16 races so that should mean the cream will rise to the top.
On the name of their boat:
They had to rename the Beijing 2008 boat because organisers deemed it unsuitable (it was named after a song by The Kooks) :
"Prince Charles came and christened our boat Lovely Rita. Unfortunately, we didn't love all of Lovely Rita, so we've had to take the wings off Rita and put them on Raindance Maggie, so we're sailing a mongrel; Raindance Rita. It shouldn't get us into any bother because there are no rude words in it.
On whether flipping over a boat 100m from the gold medal fills them with hope or fear:
"You always back yourself to get to the bottom mark, the finish. But it happens so quickly and it can be so random. That race in China is a prime example. We gybed for the finish and having seen everyone fall over in front I said to Stevie: 'We've just got to get to the finish' and I didn't even get the sentence out and we were end over end."
On whether that experience is relevant to their London 2012 preparation:
"It is relevant. It was our first real setback. We'd never really had to face adversity up to that point. It was a shock and it took a year and a bit for our sailing to get beyond that. Since then we've been chasing the ball. It's made us a lot tougher, a lot more ruthless. We're stronger as a team. We've learned a lot about each other."