Friday, 10 May 2013

Andrew Simpson Olympic Yachtsman 1976-2013

Simpson on the right with Iain Percy
Andrew Simpson was the crewman who along with Iain Percy won gold in the Star class at the Beijing Olympics and silver in the same class last summer.

He was a competitive sailor in the Finn class before teaming up with Percy, winning silver in the 2001 European Championships and bronze in the 2003 worlds. But of course that was a class where fellow Brit Ben Ainslie ruled supreme so the chance to crew for Percy allowed him to take part in two Olympics.

With the Star class cut from the 2016 Olympic regatta Simpson's eyes turned towards the America's Cup, like those of his teenage training partner and rival Ben Ainslie. Yesterday he was training with the Swedish crew Artemis Racing in San Francisco Bay for who he was the strategist. The catamaran flipped over and he was trapped underneath for 10 minutes and efforts from doctors out in the bay and onshore were unable to revive him.

Speaking after missing out on gold only in the medal race last summer when the wind shifted Simpson said,

"It's a lottery at times. That last run proved it. We didn't get it right. Sorry for everyone who's watching. We tried our hardest." 

Sadly that lottery of water, wind and men trying to control both claimed his life yesterday.

Thoughts are with his wife Leah, their young son Freddie, the rest of the Artemis crew and all his friends and family.

Andrew Simpson 17 December 1976 - 9 May 2013

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