Mumbai, Oct 24: The Yachting Association of India (YAI) Senior National Championship – 2015, concluded on Saturday.
Admiral RK Dhowan, Chief of Naval Staff and President YAI, was the Chief Guest for the closing ceremony and witnessed the final races and gave away the prizes. Nethra Kumanan from Tamil Nadu, who is vying for Olympic 2016 qualification, scheduled at Oman in mid November 15, walked away with a gold medal in Laser Radial Class of boat.
In the Laser (Standard) the results were predictable with Upamanyu Dutta, the No 1ranked sailor from INWTC, Mumbai winning the Gold medal. The Silver medal was grabbed by Gitesh also from AYN.
In the Laser (Radial), TNSA was the name to go by! In Laser (Radial) Nethra Kumanan was won the Gold Medal. Ananya Chouhan from EMESA had to be satisfied with a second place with Silver.
In RSX, Dyne Coelho from GBSA won sealed his Gold medal and was closely followed by Jerome Kumar S from AYN winning the Silver medal.
In the 470 Class, the pair of P Muttu and Narender Rajput from AYN sizzled throughout and won all the races, and also the Gold Medal. Ayaz Shaikh and Shubham Patel from AYN maintained their second position with very steady sailing.
Sandip Jain and Pawan Kumar from Shekhar Singh Yadav and Rahul Yadav won the Gold and Silver respectively in the Enterprise Class. India has won more than 10 medals at the Enterprise Class World Championships in the past with Homi Motivala and Pushpendra Garg being conferred the coveted Khel Ratna award and Aashim Mongia,R Mahesh, Girdharilal Yadav the Arjuna awards.
In the Hobie 16 catamaran, it was a tight contest till the end with Samal Pradhan and Rahul Rai from INWTC, Mumbai winning the Gold, closely followed by Brijraj Verma and Pankaj Kumar from INWTC, Mumbai winning the Silver and Bronze medals respectively.
The President, Yachting Association of India and the Chief of the Naval Staff Admiral RK Dhowan witnessed the final races of the event and later interacted with the sailors, team leaders, parents and the officials.
Speaking on the occasion after the Prize distribution ceremony, he said “Intrinsically, the importance of sports has been in promoting an active healthy lifestyle, creating a culture of sportsmanship and team spirit and helping in the overall development of an individual. To a nation, however, promoting sports brings in the spirit of the game, the national pride, a sense of social inclusiveness and of course employment opportunities. With increased government spending on local and global sports events and Indian athletes winning international acclaim, the sport is on a steady footing but there is still lots that needs to be done.”
The final day of the YAI Senior National Championship 2015 once again saw delightful sailing conditions, a steady wind averaging 10 knots with moderate swell which made the course challenging.
The Principal Race Officer was precise with the course and prompt with race starts and managed to hold 5 races today and made up for the time lost yesterday. With10 races completed the sailors got the advantage to discard 2 of their worst scores, exactly what they had hoped for!!
The championship was hosted by the Indian Navy Watermanship Training Centre (INWTC), Mumbai. The YAI Youth National Championships will be hosted by the Tamil Nadu Sailing Association at Chennai during 25 to 29 November 2015 and more than 200 young sailors are expected to participate in the Optimist, Laser 4.7, RS One, 29er and 420 classes.