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Dublin: 9 °C Saturday 23 March, 2019
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Two more Irish sailors qualify for the 2016 Olympics

Ryan Seaton and Matt McGovern booked their places in Rio earlier today.

Ryan Seaton and Matt McGovern have qualified for the 2016 Olympics.
Ryan Seaton and Matt McGovern have qualified for the 2016 Olympics.
Image: James Kell

TWO MORE IRISH sailors have qualified for the 2016 Olympics, as Ryan Seaton and Matt McGovern booked their places in Rio today at the ISAF Sailing World Championships in Santander, Spain.

Sailing as a pair, this latest success follows the individual qualifications of Annalise Murphy and Ryan Espey at the same event in recent days.

The duo, who also competed together at the London 2012 Olympics, eased the pressure to reach Brazil by securing one of 10 places available from a competing pool of 33, with 50% of the spots allocated for the Olympics up for grabs at the event.

After steady progress over the past week, Seaton and McGovern’s sixth place overall was ultimately enough to earn them a place in Rio.

They have one more Gold fleet race tomorrow before the top 10 boats progress to Sunday’s medal races.

In reaction to the news, Seaton said: “Getting the qualification for Rio is a big boost for us. It’s one box ticked but we still have a job to finish. We’re here to get a medal so we’ve still got to keep pushing hard.”

Meanwhile, McGovern added: “Now we can focus on events in Rio rather than having to compete in Europe at the other qualifiers. From a preparation point of view, it makes things a lot smoother.”

Meanwhile, Ireland’s Andrea Brewster and Saskia Tidey had a disappointing day. They were unable to finish their first race, while they are now 23rd overall, after finishing 25th, 19th and 20th in their other races today.

Nevertheless, the pair, who need to finish in the top 10 overall, have one more chance at Olympic qualification tomorrow.

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