Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Clay Johnson and Andrew Campbell

Congratulations to Litoralis for correctly guessing the answer to yesterday's photo quiz. The two boys in the picture are indeed the American sailors Clay Johnson and Andrew Campbell, both born in 1984.

The photo was originally published in the Summer 1987 edition of the E-Scow class newsletter, the Reporter. (It's on page 11.) Andrew and Clay's parents were very active in the E-Scow Class back then and only lived a few blocks away from each other in Toms River, New Jersey. I suspect the fact that Andrew's mother was the class secretary and treasurer and publication business manager had something to do with how this family vacation photo ended up in the newsletter. Andrew's family later moved to San Diego. Thanks to Baydog for originally sending me a copy of this newsletter.

After successful college sailing careers (Andrew at Georgetown, Clay at Harvard) both young men campaigned to compete in the Laser class in the Olympics for the USA. In the trials for the Laser slot at the 2008 Olympics, Andrew won and Clay was third, so Andrew sailed for his country in China. For the 2012 Olympics, Clay returned to the fray and was thought by many observers, including me, to be the clear favorite to win the Laser trials and go to Weymouth. But an amazing performance by Rob Crane on the last day of the Worlds in Perth (part of the US qualification system in this cycle) gave Rob the Olympic place.

Both Andrew and Clay have been mentioned before on this blog.

I wrote quite a lot about the 2008 Olympic campaign, but this photo of Andrew was in my more recent post Damn You Andrew Campbell.

I've also written several posts about Clay. This photo of him was published in the post encouraging you to Vote for Clay Johnson as the US Olympic Committee's Male Athlete of the Month.

Thanks to everyone who had a go at the quiz. Hope you enjoyed it.


Joe said...

Duh, of course they're Laser sailors. Great contest! (Did Lit get insider info? Does he have a better algorithm than Mr. Google?)

Tillerman said...

Lito didn't get any help from me - other than the hints that I posted publicly on the original quiz post this morning.

Litoralis said...

I found them by looking for well known Laser sailors who are similar in age and who would have had the opportunity to know each other during their childhood.

I also notice that Clay Johnson had commented that he knew who was in the photo. However, thinking that Clay wouldn't give it away that easily, I first guessed Ainslie and Goodison.

Joe said...

Kudos Lito, you're a smarter man than I am. Great detective work!

Baydog said...

Apple and the tree

Tillerman said...

I had an email exchange with Clay after his comment. I think he was a bit surprised to see that photo on my blog as only this past weekend he had seen that same picture in a frame at his grandparents house.

Did Ainslie and Goodison know each other as children? They were from roughly the same area of England and I suspect that they must have met up at a fairly early age on the Opti circuit. But I have seen no evidence that their families were as close as the Campbells and Johnsons were.

Litoralis said...

Ben Ainslie was born February 5, 1977. Paul Goodison was born November 29, 1977. I don't know if they knew each other at age 3, but I saw this photo of them together and saw some possible resemblance to the kids in the photo...thought it was worth a guess.