The Lymington sailor has been propelled to fourth place after enjoying a solid start to the Skandia Sail for Gold Regatta

Nick Thompson says he is keeping his friends close and his London 2012 rivals closer as he looks to seize the upper hand for Olympic qualification at the 2011 Skandia Sail for Gold Regatta.

The 25-year-old has enjoyed a solid start to this year’s competition, ending the opening day with a second-place finish, only to follow that up with finishes of 11th, sixth and first 24 hours later.

That has propelled the world silver medallist into fourth place, and more importantly four places ahead of his rival for the solitary British London 2012 Laser spot – Paul Goodison.

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