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Matt Wearn wins gold in sailing mens laser event

It was only a formality, but Matt Wearn has his gold medal in the men’s single laser sailing event, and Australia has its fourth of the day.

It’s the most ever by the nation on a single day of any Olympics.

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Wearn’s program began a week ago, and there were ten races leading up to the ‘medal race’ today – but since accumulation of points from the entire week matters, he only had to start and complete the race today without being disqualified to be locked in as champion.

But there was no taking the foot off the gas as Wearn crossed the line in second, behind Frenchman Jean Baptiste Bernaz, who finished first on the day and sixth overall.

The big mover on this final day was Croatia’s Tonci Stipanovic, who began the day in third and ended up in silver.

Bronze went to Hermann Tomasgaard of Norway.

“The goal was just to go out and have a clean start and be able to race from there. To be able to do that and just enjoy the race was awesome,” Wearn told reporters.

The 25-year-old, who was competing in his first Olympics, was cheered on by a healthy Australian team contingent, who then chaired him and his vessel from the water as he celebrated with an Australian flag.

“It was a great experience – nice wind, good waves. When the wind’s like this the sport is just amazing and you really start to enjoy it,” he said.

Australia now has 14 gold so far at the Games, rapidly closing on their best-ever showing across an Olympics.

The number is now equal third all-time with Beijing, and just four more are needed to pass Sydney (16) and Athens (17).

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