Frustrated Tobin considers kitesurfing in Rio

FRED WOODCOCK IN WEYMOUTH
Last updated 05:00 09/08/2012
JP Tobin
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FLYING THE FLAG: JP Tobin will be the sole New Zealand representative at the world windsurfing championships.

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Kitesurfing or windsurfing at the Rio Olympics?

A final decision is expected in November, but either way it might not matter for JP Tobin, who is open to campaigning in either class.

Tobin, who will be 39 in 2016, finished seventh in the men's RS:X windsurfer at the Olympic regatta.

The Kiwi world championship bronze medallist was frustrated because he had realistic designs on winning a medal in the same class that Tom Ashley won gold in at Beijing, but then seventh in such a highly competitive class is respectable.

He knows he was capable of better, but had serious issues with his equipment, including breaking six fins.

“Coming in, I was training well and my form was great. My form still is great, but once we had the allocation of equipment, things didn't go well,” Tobin said.

“Standardisation is not quite up to speed. I had one day where it looked like I might pick things up, but I just didn't fire.”

Having finally made it to the Olympics after 16 years of campaigning, when he got the nod over Ashley on form last year, you could have been forgiven for thinking this might be the 35-year-old's swansong. But not necessarily.

Like many windsurfers here, he is hoping for a reversal of the world governing body's controversial decision to replace the class with kitesurfing for Rio. The final call will be made in November.

“We have a world championships there next year, if the RS:X stays in, so short-term I'd like to take a look at that. Venues dictate a lot, especially once you get older, as to whether or not you want to go again. We'll certainly have a look. It's just another board sport. It's just a natural evolution to what we do.” FAIRFAX NZ

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