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Aussies headed for Para-sailing whitewash

AAP logoAAP 17/09/2016 Lucy Hughes Jones

Australian Paralympians Liesl Tesch and Dan Fitzgibbon have become the first sailors to win back-to-back golds as Australia threatens a clean sweep of titles in Rio.

The Brisbane-based duo guaranteed themselves a second straight SKUD18 victory on Friday (Saturday AEST) after posting an unbeatable lead with a day to spare.

With a stunning eight wins from 10 races and two second placings, the veterans made sure they wrapped up gold.

"What a way to retire. Ride off into the sunset for us," Fitzgibbon said.

Given sailing has been removed from the Paralympic program for Tokyo 2020, the win was a fitting end to an extraordinary couple of careers.

Fitzgibbon won silver in Beijing and they both won gold in London, while Tesch competed for Australia in wheelchair basketball at five Games between 1992 and 2008, winning three medals along the way.

Tesch, who was robbed at gunpoint while in Rio three months ago, said they faced several behind-the-scenes hiccups this week.

"But I think our sense of humour and our enjoyment of the sport has probably pushed us beyond what's happened," she said.

"We've done lots of hours on the boat together - it nearly killed me - we've really put in some hard yards before we got here. It pays off."

The pair was one of two Aussie crews to secure gold with one race to go, while a third boat is well placed to snatch the third when the Rio regatta concludes on Saturday.

Sonar trio Russell Boaden, Jonathan Harris and Colin Harrison also posted an insurmountable lead to take the title.

The focus now turns to Matt Bugg in the 2.4mR single-person class as he battles for gold in what could be his maiden Games medal.

The Tasmanian was disqualified in race 10 and now sits in third place behind defending champion Helena Lucas of Great Britain and France's Damien Seguin.

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