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One year on from Burton's Sailing gold

16 August 2017

SAILING: On this day one year ago Tom Burton pulled off a stunning victory in the medal race to claim gold in the men's Laser at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. 

Burton reflects on that amazing moment and what the months following have been like as a newly crowned Olympic Champion. 

 

What are your memories of the Olympics?
Obviously there are some pretty special memories of 1 year ago. The clear winner obviously standing on the top of the podium with an Olympic gold medal. I also like to remember the amount of time and effort that went into that week of competition which is somewhat more inspiring to think about.

What are your memories of your competition?
It was a rollercoaster. The week long competition had its ups and downs. Literally form day to day. I can remember Day 1 was not good. Day 2 was really good. Then back down again on Day 3. With a situation which I thought my chances of winning were nearly over. Then really good from there on to the end. It has a lot of meaning for myself as I am super proud of how I never gave up and kept moving forwards towards the goal at 100%, which I may not have done as a younger athlete.

What did it mean for you to hear the Australian anthem play standing on the podium?
It meant everything. It was the reason I spent so many hours training, pushing myself to the limit, getting frustrated with my performances and then fine tuning and trying again. The thoughts of the flag getting raised and the national anthem being played was what kept me coming back trying harder than before.

What was it like when you returned home to your family and friends?
The first few months were a bit crazy. Getting ready for the Olympics was just trying to make it seem like any other competition, and somehow in my head it has just stayed the same. It was a big deal to me, but somehow was an even bigger deal to everyone else.


Has your life changed much since the Games?
Not really, my goals have changed slightly since then, having some more time off and re-evaluating life. Setting some new goals and moving forwards to try and achieve them.


What have you done in the year since your success?
I have been on a few different types of boats trying to learn some more skills in which can help my career and sailing ability, I have bought a house with my girlfriend and now getting back into competitions in the lead up to 2020 Olympics.

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