Kiwi sailor Winther's Olympic snub appeal turned down

New Zealand sailor Sara Winther. Photo / Richard Robinson
New Zealand sailor Sara Winther. Photo / Richard Robinson

Kiwi sailor Sara Winther's appeal of her Olympic snub has been turned down by the New Zealand Sports Tribunal.

The Sports Tribunal is yet to release the official ruling, but in a statement posted on Winther's facebook page today she confirmed her challenge over her non-nomination in the Laser Radial class has been unsuccessful.

"Obviously this is very difficult to come to terms with as my dream of an Olympic medal in 2016 is now over. However, I respect the appeal process and appreciate that I was able to put my case forward and have it considered," Winther wrote on her facebook post.

"My journey over the last four years since the 2012 Olympic Games has presented me with many challenges, but also provided me with great opportunities and I have enjoyed striving for excellence and getting the best out of myself in the sport that I love. I have been proud to represent New Zealand as a sailor and have always given my best."

Winther, who finished 11th at the most recent world championships in Mexico, qualified New Zealand spot in the Laser Radial class for Rio back in 2014, but under Yachting New Zealand's strict selection criteria, the 32-year-old did not receive a nomination to compete at the Games.

Sailors must prove they are capable of medalling at the Olympics to be selected in their respective classes.

Winther said she will take some time to reflect on what her sporting future holds.

"Where I go from here I don't know. I need some time to take this decision onboard and to reflect and think about what's next. My love for sailing remains, my passion for competing is still there and my belief in my ability to compete for New Zealand at the highest level internationally is unchanged."

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