Emma Wilson from Great Britain has been a rising star of the RS:X fleet having won the RS:X event at the Youth World Championships in 2016 and 2017. Breaking into the senior fleet scene has been almost seamless for Emma where at the 2018 RS:X World Championships she qualified Great Britain for the Tokyo Olympics and came fourth overall. 

Emma has since come third overall at the 2018 and 2019 European Championships as well as earning another fourth place at the 2020 World Championships. Is this the year where she reaches higher up the podium??

You have had some excellent regattas leading up to Tokyo 2020ne, with some podium finishes against the top in the world – what have you been working on to get to the top of the podium over the past year?

Yeah over the winter we had quite a few regattas so I was trying learn as much as I could from each race and then in may and June I have spent it at home in weymouth training hard, putting the little things together. It’s been really good hard enjoyable training and now I’m looking forward to getting to Japan!

How have you been preparing for the conditions in Tokyo? 

I spent most of my winter away in Vilamoura and Cadiz in big waves which we are likely to see in Japan and obviously it was much nicer temperature there than in England in the winter. 

How has COVID affected your training plans and preparation for Tokyo? Do you think the UK lockdown compared to other countries has been a disadvantage?

At the start it was pretty hard because we didn’t even know if the Olympics would happen but then as things started to become clearer, my coach (Barrie) and I put a plan together. I spent all last summer in Weymouth where it is a great place to get time on the water and enjoy all different water sports. 

Who do you consider to be your biggest rivals in the fleet and who would you say could be the surprise sailor in the fleet?

I think the top 10 / top 15 are all really really good sailors, you can see in the results, every event we are all so close. So I think it will be a tight battle, for sure it will be exciting. The Chinese could be the surprise sailor because I’m still not sure who has been selected to represent them and we haven’t seen them compete for over 18 months…..

What would be a happy outcome for you from Tokyo 2020ne?

To really enjoy the experience and have given it everything.

As an Olympic first timer – what support have you got within the team to help you prepare for the Olympics

In the British team it is full of experience, my coach has competed and coached at seven Olympics I think, and then obviously there are people like Hannah mills and Giles in the team that you can pick up little nuggets of information, that’s really cool and can really help me. 

Thanks Emma, we wish you all the very best for the Olympics!

Interview and text by RS:X Class
Photos by Joao Costa Ferreira – Osga Photo