The 7th Annual Royal-Thomian Sailing Regatta for the Ranil Dias Memorial Trophy was held on the 23rd and 24th of September 2022 at the Ceylon Motor Yacht Club.
This encounter marked the return of Thomian Sailing after a lapse of nearly 2 years due to the persistent effects of the Covid-19 pandemic. Nevertheless, the Thomians made an unforgettable comeback as they beat the Royalists in a nail biting clash filled with almost all the elements of a wonderful Sailing Regatta.
With the ongoing crisis situation in the country, almost all sports of College were subjected to many unprecedented challenges, with sailing being one of the most heavily hit sports out of them. Therefore, both attending as well as conducting practices over the past few months have been quite challenging for this young side. Nevertheless, even amidst such frustrating times, the sailing crew was well united as a team and they have undoubtedly shown the true Thomian grit throughout their strenuous efforts to achieve greatness. Furthermore, the Thomians came into this encounter after winning 5 out of the 6 past encounters.
The Royal-Thomian Sailing Regatta consisted of 6 races in two boat classes, namely Optimists (Under 16) and Lasers (Under 20), with the individual races and team races taking place on Day 1 and Day 2 respectively. The Regatta commenced with the individual races of the Optimists Boat Category. After an intense boat race, 3 Thomians were placed within the Top 10 positions of the race. Thereafter, the Laser Boat Sailors made their way to the water and from the start itself, the Thomian skipper Jehan De Silva was leading the race by quite a margin. In the end, the Thomians gained a massive victory as they secured the Top 3 positions of the race with Jehan De Silva, Haresh Goonewardene and Dimitri Vitharana finishing on the podium. As a result, at the conclusion of Day 1, the score remained at a tie with both teams scoring 2 points each.
The second day of the Regatta commenced with the Optimists B and Laser B boat category team races. After a scintillating performance by the Laser B Team of S. Thomas’ consisting of Dimitri Vitharana, Enalka De Silva, Sashen Ellawala and Mckyle Karunaratne, the Thomians secured a 2-0 victory over the Royalists, adding one more point to their total points tally. Next, the Optimists A team took to the waters and after a quite intense race, the Royalists emerged victorious with a score of 2-1 which meant that the final outcome of the Regatta was to be decided by the final fixture itself. Accordingly, as the final race for the day, the Laser A team consisting of skipper Jehan De Silva, Haresh Goonewardene, Shashenka Fernando and Kehan Zuhaib made their way to the water and from the start itself, both teams were going head to head with the score standing at 1-1 at the end of 2 laps. Finally, with the race going down to the wire, the Thomians went on to win the final lap of the race and emerged victorious overall.
With that, once again the Thomians regained the Ranil Dias Memorial Trophy for the 6th time during the short history of the encounter, showing their dominance in the sport. Furthermore, the Thomian skipper, Jehan De Silva won the award for the Best Performing Laser Sailor at the encounter for his magnificence in the water. In conclusion, we would like to congratulate Jehan and his team on achieving this magnificent feat and wish them the best of luck for their future endeavours!
“And upon the field of sport,
Thomians yield to none.”