TOM Squires is trying not to think about where he should have been this week.

The windsurfer from Kingston Bagpuize was gearing up for the Tokyo Olympics, which would have started on Friday, until the coronavirus pandemic postponed the Games by 12 months.

Squires, who turns 27 next Monday, had been honing his preparations for the Men’s RS:X competition at Enoshima Island since securing his place in the Team GB squad last October.

But those plans were put on hold when the Games were delayed in March and he admitted it still feels strange not being in Japan.

He said: “It’s pretty hard to ignore right now.

“I still can’t quite get my head around it.

“You can’t change it and I’m very good at adapting.

“It’s about the stepping stones and being really conscious of what I’m trying to achieve.

“It’s no longer a sprint to the Games, it’s a longer journey so I don’t need to do anything crazy.”

That feeling was intensified by a distanced gathering of Britain’s Olympic sailing team at their base in Weymouth last week.

Squires spent the start of lockdown in Oxfordshire, but has been in Dorset since returning to training in May.

Whereas the plan for 2020 had been to ramp up performances before peaking at the Games, the windsurfer has instead found himself re-learning aspects of his craft.

He said: “In lighter winds when you’re working the sail it has taken a long time to get the different techniques back.

“I had regressed, so it’s extremely frustrating.

“Part of getting to the Games is about constant progression, so every now and again I get annoyed. But I know I just need to take my time.”

Another test has been the introduction of new equipment, which will come in for the next Olympic cycle.

It means Squires is relying on the goodwill of his training partners as he builds up to the rearranged Games, starting with the RS:X European Championships in Athens this November.

He said: “Everyone’s jumped ship into these new boards building up to 2024, but I’m still slugging it out.

“It’s quite a challenge asking people to train with me on an obsolete surfer for my own benefit.

“But if I do well it’ll push the pathway into the next cycle.”

His place at the Games is secure after the British Olympic Association and Royal Yachting Association decided to keep faith with their squad.

But after some countries decided to re-do their Olympic qualification, some of his rivals are not so fortunate.

In what will already be a tough year, Squires is grateful to avoid another headache.

He said: “I feel really lucky to be in the situation I’m in.

“This extra year is the most unique challenge of any Olympics.

“You have good days and bad days, but to make sure you perform well through the year is going to be really hard.”