Four-time gold medalist Ben Ainslie of Great Britain says he is retiring from Olympic sailing in order to focus on the America's Cup.
In a statement released early Tuesday, Ainslie says he wanted to take some time after the London Olympics to make his decision.
The 35-year-old Ainslie became the most successful Olympic sailor ever when he won the gold medal in the Finn class at the London Games. It was his fourth straight gold medal and fifth games medal overall.
Following the Olympics, Ainslie began sailing in the America's Cup World Series with Ben Ainslie Racing. He will sail with defending America's Cup champion Oracle Racing in the 34th America's Cup, set for 2013 in San Francisco, with the goal of launching a British challenge for the 35th America's Cup.
Great Britain has never won the America's Cup, which began in 1851 when the schooner America beat a fleet of British ships around the Isle of Wight.