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Local sailors impress in National Hobie 16 championship

G. Narasimha Rao
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For 45 days before the competition, AWSA conducted a camp

ON A HIGH: Sailors from Visakhapatnam, who have participated in the National Hobie 16 sailing championship, pose for a photograph at the end of the championship in the city on Tuesday. — Photo: C.V. Subrahmanyam
ON A HIGH: Sailors from Visakhapatnam, who have participated in the National Hobie 16 sailing championship, pose for a photograph at the end of the championship in the city on Tuesday. — Photo: C.V. Subrahmanyam

The training lasted a few days to few weeks but the local sailors have impressed the seasoned participants in the seventh National Hobie 16 sailing championship that concluded at the Ramakrishna beach on Tuesday.

Among the 11 sailors was Amreen Malik, who brought fame to the city by winning medals in the senior National swimming championships and created seven records in the all-India inter-university meet. She was also a probable for the New Delhi Commonwealth Games.

Amreen was crew to experienced sailor Kaushal Kumar from Artillery Water Sports Association of the Artillery Centre, Golkonda (Hyderabad) in the championship and the team finished fifth. “Many are saying this is a creditable performance for a first timer like me”, said Amreen. She says that there is a lot to be learnt in Hobie 16 sailing. She would continue with her swimming while practising sailing.

On Hobie 16 sailing, Amreen said it was a tough sport, one should sail the course judging the wind speed and waves. It is different from swimming. “Lung capacity matters a lot in swimming and here you need a lot of physical strength”, she said.

The local yachting associations, the Yachting Association of Vizag and the Dolphin Yachting Association were happy that their young sailors have participated and earned experience in sailing Hobie 16 sailing. Winners of the championship Brijraj Verma and P. Seshagiri Rao appreciated the local sailors.

For 45 days before the competition, the AWSA conducted a sort of camp at Ramakrishna beach to popularise Hobie 16 sailing and to attract local talent. A good number of youngsters tried their hand at the Hobie 16 boats but not many stayed back because this sport needed a lot of physical strength, said Maj. K.S. Panigrahy of the Artillery Centre and also secretary of the National Hobie Class Association.

Still the few who continued have done well. “We are happy the way they have performed and are glad to see our efforts being rewarded to an extent”, said secretary of the Dolphin Yachting Association N.A. Vara Prasada Reddy and secretary of Yachting Association of Vizag G. S. Reddy.

One of the sailors and a lifeguard Yellaji wants continuous and thorough training to the locals. If they could give us boats and training for two months, we would do wonders, he said.

The participation of locals and their impressive show has thrown up a greater responsibility on district officials. It is now necessary for them to ensure that the Hobie 16 catamarans the SAAP has sent here for the National Games in 2002 are retained and kept in good shape. Five of the boats are still in working condition.

K. Chinna Reddy/G. Raj Srikanth of YAV; Anirudh Vijay/Mohandas (DYA0; Yellaji/VVV Vishnu (DYA); A. Narendra/M. Kiran Kumar (YAV) and Melville/P. Rakesh (DYA) participated in the championship.


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