Survey shows more Brits will be following sailing's Olympic hopefuls than Wimbledon or test cricket

According to a new survey commissioned by Skandia, Britain is pinning its hopes for a golden summer of sport on the Olympics and is relegating high profile sports to the bottom of the expectation heap. Brits said that they would be more interested in following the Olympic Games than Wimbledon, the British Grand Prix or the Cricket Test Series against South Africa this summer.

Around one in three of those polled believe that Great Britain will win gold medals at the Olympic Games this summer compared to less than one in 10 believing British Number One Andrew Murray will win at Wimbledon.

And when it comes to what we see as the golden Olympic sports, it’s less mainstream sports, such as rowing and sailing, rather than athletics, which Brits believe will bring home the medals.

Greats of the past such as Coe, Ovett, and Christie are being replaced by the likes of sailor Ben Ainslie, as the sports stars who are capturing the nation’s imagination and fuelling optimism that Britain can compete and win in world- class competition.

‘Thanks to the recent success and the rise to fame of British sailors such as Dame Ellen MacArthur and Ben Ainslie, the sport of sailing is enjoying a purple patch at present, which has captured the public and the media’s attention. It’s really encouraging that the British public recognises that the Great hasn’t completely gone out of Britain when it comes to sport,’ says Tim Sewell from Skandia.