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Welsh winner of 2019 RYA Regional Youth Champion Awards to be presented at RYA Dinghy Show

by RYA Cymru-Wales 26 Feb 13:09 GMT
Rhys Lewis - RYA Cymru Wales winner of the RYA Regional Youth Champion Awards © RYA Cymru-Wales

Young sailor Rhys Lewis has been revealed as the RYA Cymru Wales winner of the RYA Regional Youth Champion Awards.

The Cardiff Bay sailor had an outstanding season last year, with RYA CymruWales Performance Director Paul Simes saying he has the potential to reach British sailing's Olympic pathway.

Apart from competing at British, European and World championships level, Lewis also regularly helps out with midweek coaching at Cardiff Bay to help the next generation of young sailors.

Lewis, along with crew Drew Wright from Much Wenlock, was the national champion in the 420 boat last year, came 13th at the ISAF World Junior Championships though he is young enough to go again this year, bronze medal at the U17 Europeans and second at the RYA youths.

Each of the regional and home country champions and their families have been invited to the official awards presentation taking place at 13:30 on Sunday 03 March, at the RYA Dinghy Show. The awards will be presented on the Main Stage by double Olympic silver medallist and RYA Director of Racing, Ian Walker.

"We call Rhys the 'Silent Assassin' because he is quiet and unassuming off the water, but very focused in the boat," explained Simes.

"He has also always wanted to give back and he coaches regularly on a Wednesday evening at Cardiff Bay. He is happy to talk to anybody in the Welsh squad or anybody who wants information.

"He was the first boy in the nationals, which meant he went to the worlds in Texas, where 13th was a good result as he still young enough to go again this year.

"He is a talented sailor with the potential to go onto the Olympic pathway. He is one of our most successful sailors at national level, following the likes of Hannah Mills and David Evans.

"He won the Optimsts National Championships at junior and senior level, won the 420 nationals last year and was third in the Europeans in Portugal after travelling straight from the worlds in America."

Launched in 2014, the RYA Regional Youth Champion Awards recognise the outstanding dedication, achievement and performance of talented young people in sailing, windsurfing and powerboating.

RYA Director of Sport Development, Alistair Dickson commented: "We're delighted to recognise the achievements of these individuals who have all shown lots of hard work, sacrifice and commitment. It's fantastic to see so many young role models and true ambassadors for the sport."

For more information about the RYA Regional Youth Champion Awards visit rya.org.uk/go/youthchampion.

For further details about Welsh sailing and watersports, please go to RYA CYMRU Wales page on website or Facebook page or follow on Twitter @RYACymruWales. You can also keep up to date by following RYA Cymru Wales on Instagram.

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