Sport

Invictus Sailors Want To 'Show Everyone What Team UK Can Do' In Sydney

The 2018 tournament is the first year sailing will be included.

Invictus Games athletes selected for Team UK's sailing team have been stepping up their training ahead of the competition in Sydney next month.

The 2018 tournament is the first year sailing will be included, and nine British athletes have been spending time out on the water at the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy in Dorset.

The sailing team are training in Elliot 6 boats, a slightly smaller version of what they will use in Sydney, and in Hansa 303s.

In Sydney, they will take on three races, with the top six teams from the Elliot races and the top five from the Hansa fleet qualifying for a medal round.

Among them is former Royal Marines musician, Poppy Pawsey, who won a bronze medal in the 2017 Games in Toronto and is captaining the sailing squad.

"It's a bit of trying to get everyone out learning where they're going to be in the boat, how they move across the boat," she says.

Elliot 6 boats
The Elliot 6 boats the team are using to train in are smaller version of what they will use in Australia.

"Everyone's got different injuries or things that maybe they can't move as easily across the boat, so we're just working as a team to try and make that work.

"As a team captain the goal obviously is to go out there and show everyone what us Brits can do on the water.

"But essentially I want to have a safe boat and a happy boat."

The UK team that will be competing in Australia was officially announced in May, with medal designs for the competition being announced earlier this month.

Spencer Bull served with the Royal Green Jackets and the Rifles for 29 years before he was medically discharged due to multiple sclerosis: "I was getting a bit fed up sat on the sidelines, watching everyone else do stuff, believing that I couldn't for whatever reason, and thought 'no, I need to change my whole approach'," he says.

"Let's see if I can do something that I can be that role model for my kids, be an inspiration for them, and tell them whatever life throws at you, you can deal with adversity."

The Games, which were founded in 2014 by Prince Harry, will take place from 20-27 October involving more than 500 competitors from 18 competing nations.

More: Invictus Flag Tour Marks 50 Days Until Games Begin