Golden moment for Peter Burling and Blair Tuke

By Yachting NZ

Today Peter Burling and Blair Tukes four-year goal to win Olympic Gold came to fruition as they stood atop the podium on Rios Flamenco Beach and were presented their medals.

After opening up an unassailable 34-point leading margin on the penultimate day of racing Burling and Tuke had the gold medal secure before sailing the double-points medal race.

Today they sailed a stunning victory lap to win the medal race and close the regatta in style.

Blair Tuke said, "It was awesome sailing conditions of 15 odd knots and flat water, so to have the pressure off and just go and enjoy it was an amazing feeling, but we wanted to put in a good race and put a stamp on the regatta and its just great to do that."

Burling said, "We had a day off and a little bit of a celebration the day before, but we definitely decided we wanted to go and do what we could in this race and try and take another win and to put our best foot forward."

"It has been an amazing week and to be able to do that and in those kind of conditions it was a really special moment coming into the finish there, and know wed done it and we were going to get the medal soon."

"You know, with our coach Hamish on the coach boat afterward was pretty special as well. Weve been working super hard for a long time and for it all to come together so well, its been an amazing week."

Back in 2012 the pair took their time to decide whether they would campaign in the 49er for Rio 2016, but once confirmed they declared that the goal was to go one better and win Olympic Gold.

Since then theyve confounded their rivals, including returning Australian London 2012 gold medallists Nathan Outteridge and Ian Jensen, delivering an unprecedented winning streak that seemed to have no end.

Observers pounced quickly when the pair took 3rd place at the 2016 South American Champs, a two day regatta sailed in July at the Olympic venue, but the kiwis maintained theyve always had their eye on the main prize.

Burling and Tuke announced as co-captains of the entire New Zealand Olympic on 4 August after arriving in Rio and proudly walked together to lead the kiwi contingent, including the majority of the NZL Sailing Team, into Maracana Stadium for the Rio 2016 Opening Ceremony the next day.

"It was awesome for Blair and myself to lead the team into the stadium. It was an awesome experience and you know we just tried to do what we could on the water and lead by example and were happy with how weve been able to do that and it has been a really proud moment for us," said Burling.

25 year old Burling helms the New Zealands 49er skiff and is sailing in his third Olympic Games. In 2008 he became New Zealands youngest ever Olympic sailor when he finished 11th in Qingdao, China in the Mens 470 class at just 17 years of age.

Subsequently pairing with Blair Tuke (26 years-old), and switching to the 49er skiff together they won Olympic silver for New Zealand at London 2012. It was New Zealands 100th Olympic medal.

Since then Peter and Blair have amassed an incredible run of victories in the 49er class including four consecutive World Championship titles in 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016. The pair is coached by Hamish Willcox

Peter and Blair are coached by Hamish Willcox.

NZL Sailing Team Results

GOLD Peter Burling and Blair Tuke (49er)

SILVER Jo Aleh and Polly Powrie (Womens 470)

SILVER Alex Maloney and Molly Meech (49erFX)

BRONZE - Sam Meech (Laser)

4th - Gemma Jones and Jason Saunders (Nacra)

7th - Josh Junior (Finn)

10th Paul Snow-Hansen and Dan Willcox (Mens 470)

Full results are available on the Rio 2016 website: https://www.rio2016.com/en/schedule-and-results

- This story has been automatically published using a media release from Yachting New Zealand

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