Olympic athlete returns to waves

Windsurfer Emma Wilson and the rest of the Great Britain sailing team are enjoying a long-awaited return to the waves.

Since the easing of the guidelines, Wilson and her team-mates are allowed to set sail again on a recreational basis, subject to social-distancing rules, which include being restricted to setting out solo or with members of the same household, says the Bournemouth Echo.

For Wilson – sharing her lockdown with her mother Penny Way, who finished sixth for Great Britain at both the 1992 and 1996 Olympics – it means a resumption of the only kind of normality she has ever known.

Wilson told the PA news agency: “It was definitely the longest I had not been able to sail since I was very young.

“I missed the feel of the saltwater, and that ability to get away from everything when you’re on the water. I could see it every day from the window of my house, and I was trying my best not to look at it too much.

“I went out for the first time on Wednesday and it all felt a bit rusty, and I fell in a few more times than I normally would.

“I’m sure it will all come back quickly but for now I am just trying to enjoy more, because I can appreciate what happens when it all suddenly gets taken away.”

“The British Sailing Team remains very mindful of the risks of COVID-19 and the extra burden any accidents might place on the emergency services, so all athletes have received specific guidance to minimise these risks,” says the RYA’s Olympic performance manager, Mark Robinson.

“We intend to heed the Prime Minister’s words that we must take small steps and that this is going to be a long and gradual process to get back to normal.”

Read the full article in the Bournemouth Echo.

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