The road to Tokyo
Knowing that derailing convention is what it takes to create history, Keith Musto and Tony Morgan, took on the long-held traditions of the sailing world with focussed determination. “The editor of Yachting World told a group of us after one competition that we could be Olympians if we set our minds to it,” Keith remembers.
Having been told he was too light and short for the heavyweight Flying Dutchman they wanted to compete in at the 1964 Tokyo Olympics, Keith and Tony worked tirelessly on their fitness. This, in itself, was cause for derision from a few members of their sailing class. Tony recalls being approached by a senior member who said to him, “’I hear you train… and [the sailing world] simply doesn’t do that.’ Keith and I were regarded as a couple of people below the salt on the table.” Sailing was traditionally seen as an innate talent, yet with every hour spent circuit training and every mile covered on water, Keith and Tony were disrupting the system from within.
These challenges welded the pair together and encouraged them to think about how to approach the sport more creatively than their competition - an intrepid attitude that took them all the way to the Olympics. Aboard their boat, Lady C, at the Tokyo Olympics, this innovative spirit saw the pair leading the way in the last seven days of the competition on the waters off the coast of Enoshima.
It was exhilarating, an unlikely almost-tale of glory against the odds. The pair were so close to Olympic victory, they could feel the weight of the gold medal on their chest, but then New Zealand came up from behind them on a wild flyer, taking their dreams with them. Being defeated by nanoseconds stayed with Keith, “…winning was what it was all about,” he commented after talking about the value he’d extracted from the experience, “but we didn’t win”.