Wind­surfer Dempsey rocked by Olympic snub

The Peterborough Evening Telegraph - - Etbusiness Daily -

GREAT Bri­tain’s wind­surfers, in­clud­ing for­mer Peter­bor­ough man Nick Dempsey (left), have been left in shock by the decision to drop the dis­ci­pline from the 2016 Rio Olympics.

The In­ter­na­tional Sail­ing Fed­er­a­tion (ISAF) an­nounced at the week­end that it would be re­placed by kite­board­ing af­ter this sum­mer’s Games.

The decision has been met by sur­prise and frus­tra­tion within the wind­surf­ing fra­ter­nity, with an on­line pe­ti­tion even set up to urge the ISAF to keep it as an Olympic dis­ci­pline.

The pe­ti­tion has al­ready ac­crued more than 1,600 sig­na­tures and has been backed by reign­ing Olympic bronze medal­list Bryon Shaw, who posted the link on Face­book and Twit­ter, and said: “Wind­surf­ing is me . . . I am wind­surf­ing!”

Olympic man­ager Stephen Park de­scribed the move as “as­tound­ing” via his Twit­ter ac­count, while Dempsey, who learned to wind­surf at Ferry Mead­ows and who won a bronze medal at the 2004 Games in Athens, took to Face­book af­ter the an­nounce­ment, say­ing: “Wow, un­ex­pected. That was a big decision and a very sad day for wind­surf­ing.

“My heart goes out to all the as­pir­ing cham­pi­ons and kids with dreams of wind­surf­ing at the Olympics.”

RE­TURN­ING HERO: Craig Mack­ail-smith was back in ac­tion at London Road yes­ter­day. More pic­tures on Pages 20 and 21.

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