The 75th ARAE-FEARA Rowing Championships was held from the 10th to the 18th of January 2017 in Chennai, India. The regatta was hosted by the Amateur Rowing Association of the East (ARAE) and the Far East Amateur Rowing Association (FEARA). The Colombo Rowing Club crew participated side-by-side with crews from countries such as India, Dubai, Indonesia, Singapore, Hong Kong and Pakistan.
A 16-man crew led by Shehan Muthugala participated at the regatta and had performed exceptionally well in the categories of both genders. The men of the crew won the Hoogly Cup for the men’s overall while the women swept off the overall category, retaining the Adyar Cup for the 3rd consecutive year.
One of Sri Lanka’s finest scullers, Hashen Hettigoda won a silver medal in the Macklin single sculls event. Hettigoda, along with his partner Lasaru Kudaligama clenched gold in the Phadnis Salver Double Sculls while Sajeev de Silva and Shehan Muthugala came in second place in the same race. De Silva managed to take his share of gold with partner Ruven Weerasinghe in the Venables Bowl men’s coxless pair race while Manilka Guneratne and Prathap Perera followed in third place. The big-made coxed four comprising Ruven Weerasinghe, Shehan Muthugala, Prathap Perera, Manilka Guneratne and Lasaru Kudaligama (cox) won gold in the race for the Willingdon Trophy. Ruven Weerasinghe emerged third in the ergometer championship winning his third medal. The men thus won the overall Hoogly trophy with a total of 39 points.
In the women’s race, the Colombo Rowing Club crew won gold in every race, whitewashing the trophies with a total of 44 points. Ishara Abbey won gold in a hard fought race, in the single sculls. Samaakhya Gajanayake and Janethri Marapana in the double sculls, and Ishika de Silva and Amani Tissera in the coxless pairs won their respective races easily. The MBC trophy for the coxed fours was won by Ishara Abbey, Amani Tissera, Ishika de Silva, Dilki Wijesekara and Peter Christy (cox). Ishara Abbey also won the ergometer championship. The women will keep the Adyar Trophy for the third consecutive year in Colombo.
In the FEARA masters regatta, Nalin Premaratne came in fourth in the Paketvaart Wisselbeker Trophy for the single scull. Varuna de Silva, Maheel Gamage, Prasantha de Silva, John de Niese and Nadun Hettiarachchi (cox) came fourth place yet again in the coxed fours for the Interport Challenge Cup.
The Colombo Rowing Club went as the first crew to win the women’s category for the third consecutive year thus setting a mile stone at the 75th ARAE-FEARA Rowing Championship.