Ryan grew up with a love for being on the water, spending the summers sailing around Halifax on his parent’s Beneteau. He moved through the Learn to Sail levels at Royal Nova Scotia Yacht Squadron where he sailed the Opti, quickly progressing to the race team where he competed successfully at a national level. From the Opti, Ryan moved to the Radial where he has continued to enjoy success, qualifying for the 2017 ISAF Youth World Championships in China at the age of 15, and then qualifying again in 2019 for the Youth Worlds in Poland.
Ryan finished up the summer of 2019 strong, finishing 3rd Canadian and 41st out of 160 at the Radial Youth World Championship and then successfully transitioning into the Laser Full rig to compete at CORK Olympic Class Regatta & the Sail Canada Senior National Championships. There are no plans to slow down his sailing commitments as he dives into his Oceanography studies at Dalhousie University, with goals to compete at the U-21 level in the coming years, and then at the Olympics as one of the best Laser sailors in the world.
- What motivates you to work hard and to continue improving as a sailor?
I really enjoy being on the water so that gives me the motivation to just go out and sail. I also really enjoy the racing aspect and like the feeling when I race well. The other thing that motivates me is the success Canadian sailors have had that makes me want to work hard and one day achieve great results like they have.
- Who is an athlete that you look up to? What is it about them that inspires you?
Recently I have looked up to Matt Fraser. He has won the CrossFit games 4x. What I like about him is he is so dominant, yet he is a great sport and doesn’t think he is better than everybody.
- What is one piece of advice you’d give to a sailor who’s just starting out in racing?
The advice I give to young sailors is to just have fun and don’t be afraid to train without a coach. I think many times young sailors are hesitant to go out without a coach but in a race, you don’t have a coach to tell you to hike harder or to change your downwind technique.
Join us in recognizing the 2019 Sail Canada Awards recipients at the Sail Canada Rolex Sailor of the Year Awards on Friday, March 6th, 2020 in Toronto, Ontario at The Carlu.
Click here for more information about the Sail Canada Rolex Sailor of the Year Awards night.
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