By Brandon Chia (20S07A), Jacob Sze (20S03B), and Celine Wong (20S06S)
Blue Whale Population: 10,000 (Endangered)
Raffles Sailing Population: 8 (Surviving and Thriving)
- Skip CTs (shh)
- Win Interschool Championships
- Collect Colours Award
Jokes aside, not many students in Raffles know about this low-key CCA called Sailing. The only thing everyone knows: we have been bringing the gilded trophy back year after year for the past decade. But our achievements do not come easily. Under the scorching sun or the pouring rain (apart from when there is lightning) you would see us putting in the hours off the shores of East Coast Park.
The questions we always get from teachers and friends alike are “Wah, going overseas again? Where to this time?” No, we do not take frequent ‘holidays’ to merely skip school or have the time of our lives. Most of us also represent Singapore as part of the National Team in addition to being a part of Raffles Sailing. This requires us to sacrifice even more of our weekends and social lives, but we still do it for both the glory of the school and the nation.
Sailing is an incredible sport that requires physical fitness, sailing technique, tactical knowledge, and racing experience. It encompasses both the physical aspect of most sports and the mental aspect of a game of chess. Not only do we control and manage our own boats out on the water, we are also required to understand the winds, currents and the actions of our competitors to help us gain the extra edge over them. The ability to bounce back from a bad start, mistaking the wind shifts or just being unlucky with wind gusts takes psychological stamina, not to mention the cognitive ability to accurately gauge inconsistent wind shifts. And one mustn’t forget the physical aspects, with sailors hiking with the burn of their legs or mastering roll tacks.
Our team, comprising many National Team sailors, heads down to East Coast Park nearly every day of the week, not to enjoy the sea breeze and take a multitude of sunset selfies, but to consistently battle the tricky conditions of the sea. Apart from our on-water trainings, you can witness us in action every Monday afternoon, at the Cages when we are conducting physical training.
As sailors, we spend a vast majority of our time with our teammates in the open sea, such that we consider it to be our second home. Having the ability to indulge in the views of our sunny island from the sea, and to enjoy the freedom away from the daily grinds of a student, is surely a great appeal to us all.
“So throw off the Bowlines and leave the safe harbour, for you cannot find new horizons without losing sight of the shore.” If you are ready for a new adventure or aim for the mastery of skills, look no further than Raffles Sailing, home of the best.