Ben Ainslie wins Finn gold in pre-Olympic test event

Ben Ainslie underlined his favouritism for Olympic gold with victory in the pre-Games test event in Weymouth.

The three-time gold medallist sealed the title in convincing fashion by winning the final medal race after dominating all week.

Olympic champions Iain Percy and Andrew Simpson clinched silver in the Star after also winning their medal race.

In the 49er class, Britain's Beijing Olympians Stevie Morrison and Ben Rhodes finished fourth.

Ainslie's gold and the silver won by Percy and Simpson boosted Great Britain's total medal tally to six at the conclusion of the event.

Ainslie has now won back-to-back events at the 2012 venue having also won the Sail for Gold Regatta two months ago.

"It's been a great week for me personally but from a team standpoint it has as well," said the three-time Olympic champion.

"We've got six medals, which is fantastic and if we can keep that going for next year that will be great for us as a team."

Percy and Simpson started the day in fourth place, needing to beat their Polish and Irish rivals to win silver, and were given an immediate boost when their rivals crossed the start line too early and found themselves back in ninth and 10th place.

The British duo won the race by 31 seconds, and Percy said: "We never like getting beaten, but given where we were after six races we were happy to claw back and get the silver."

The pair suffered equipment breakages during the week, with this event being the last time they will race the boat which they won Olympic gold in.

"The boat has done us proud - she's won us the Worlds and the Olympics but she's a bit on her last legs with the mast breakage and the boat falling to bits, but she got through in the end," said Percy.

Morrison and Rhodes had a chance of a bronze medal, going into the day in fourth place, but were unable to get in front of the New Zealand crew who they needed to beat by two places if they were to reach the podium.

"It's been a pretty good learning experience," said Rhodes. "Last (Olympic) cycle we won the test event but we felt we like we didn't come away from that with as much as we probably have learned from this event."

Team manager Stephen Park said: "We had a goal to try and win four medals at this event so to come away with six is fantastic - it could quite easily have been seven."

Top Stories