2018 Pittman Innovation Awards

Published on January 17th, 2018

Named after Freeman K. Pittman, SAIL’s long-time technical editor who died of Lou Gehrig’s disease in 1996, the Pittman Innovation Awards annually recognizes outstanding new products created by a sailing industry that is perpetually innovative in its thinking. But innovation comes in all shapes and sizes, and nowhere is this more evident than in 2018 honorees.

As has now been the case for a number of years, the latest in electronics is once again very much a part of the mix in everything from safety to racing. However, this year’s winners also include new takes on such basic products as the safety tether and the lowly canvas snap.

Also exciting to see is the trickle-down effect in action in the form of North Sails’ new NORDAC product line: it would be hard to find a better example of this phenomenon than the same cutting-edge technology that powered the Volvo Ocean Race fleet a short years ago now being made available to cruisers.

Finally, kudos to Scanstrut for the new para sailing system it developed in conjunction with RS Sailing to get more handicapped skippers out on the water. Not only does this product more than do justice to the memory of Freeman K. Pittman, it speaks to all that’s good about sailing in general.

Teamo Autolock Tether was deemed the overall winner. Here’s the list of division winners:

CRUISING
• North Sails 3Di NORDAC Sails
• Gill Hydrophobe Down Jackets and Vests
• E-Wincher

SYSTEMS
• DOMETIC – CFX 95DZW Portable Refrigerator/Freezer
• JEFA Modular Steering ‘Cassette’
• SUREFAS CAF-COMPO Snap Studs

SPECIAL MENTION
• Scanstrut Para Sailing System

SAFETY
• Exposure OLAS Float-on multipurpose flashlight

ELECTRONICS
• Vesper smartAIS App
• Garmin ActiveCaptain
• SkyMate Mazu and mSeries all-in-one Satellite Comms

RACING
• Zhik Isotak X Extreme Foulweather Gear
• Racegeek d10
• E-Furler

Full report… click here.

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