Our first Rio trip

  • Posted on: 29 January 2014
  • By: Sophie Ainsworth

Neither of us had ever been to Rio before but we absolutely loved it. We went for 3 weeks before Christmas and 2 weeks after Christmas and didn’t miss a single day’s sailing. Our biggest problem was trying not to get the heat grump…!

On our first trip we had one day off and thought it best to do all the tourist attractions in one day, sugar loaf, Christ the Redeemer and Copacabana beach. We then competed in the Intergalatic Championships for the 49ers and 49er FXs which we won. There was a crew race to finish the event, I don’t think either of us have ever been so scared.


We were at home for Christmas then went back out to Rio for New Year, which we spent on Copocabana beach. The fireworks were incredible and there were millions of people on the beach; it was quite an experience! On our second trip in Rio there were two competitions, one club regatta which we couldn’t complete due to Sophie being injured and the second Olympic classes regatta - Copa Brasil De Vela.

The Conditions in Rio were baking hot and the water certainly had a few obstacles to avoid. One of Sophie’s favourite moments was when we were sailing out to the race course and we sailed through dead fish, one got caught on our rudder, to get it off Charlotte accidentally ended up poking it the mouth, errrrgh! The BBC were out in Rio interviewing us about the Olympic waters.

Copa Brasil De Vela definitely had some highs and lows for us; we sailed incredibly well at times.

However, we made some silly mistakes and ended up going into the medal race close enough on points to the second and third placed boats such that it all depended on this race. Unfortunately, this was not our race and we finished third overall.

From Rio we headed straight to Miami, where we've had a range of conditions to train in building up to the Miami OCR regatta. Follow our results at http://mocr.ussailing.org