Nominations Open for World Sailor of the Year Awards

Published on September 5th, 2016

The Rolex World Sailor of the Year Awards, the most prestigious award of recognition in the dynamic sport of sailing, is accepting nominations for the 2016 presentation.

Since the awards inception in 1994, the trophy has accumulated the names of those who have demonstrated unparalleled endurance, performance and accomplishment in sailing. Beginning with Sir Peter Blake and Sir Robin Knox Johnston, the inaugural winners, the trophy reads like the definitive who’s who in sailing.

Rio 2016 Olympic gold medallists from New Zealand, Peter Burling and Blair Tuke won the 2015 male Rolex World Sailor of the Year title for their dominance in the 49er and the golden girl of British sailing, Sarah Ayton, was awarded the female title.

Sailor nominations can be made by any one with the only criterion being an outstanding achievement in the sport of sailing between September 1, 2015 and September 18, 2016.

World Sailing must receive nominations no later than 19:00 UTC on September 18, 2016. For the Official Nomination Form… click here.

World Sailing will draw up a shortlist of nominations with the highest and most inspirational achievers going on to become the Rolex World Sailor of the Year 2016 Nominees.

The announcement of the 2016 female and male Rolex World Sailors of the Year will be made on Tuesday, November 8 in Barcelona, Spain, the host city of the World Sailing’s 2016 Annual Conference. Winners will be presented with a unique marble and silver trophy depicting the globe, crowned with five silver spinnakers representing the continents, together with a Rolex timepiece.

Previous recipients of the Rolex World Sailor of the Year Award:
2015 Peter Burling & Blair Tuke (NZL), Sarah Ayton (GBR)
2014 James Spithill (AUS), Martine Grael & Kahena Kunze (BRA)
2013 Mat Belcher (AUS), Jo Aleh & Polly Powrie (NZL)
2012 Ben Ainslie (GBR), Lijia Xu (CHN)
2011 Iker Martinez & Xabier Fernandez (ESP), Anna Tunnicliffe (USA)
2010 Tom Slingsby (AUS), Blanca Manchon (ESP)
2009 Torben Grael (BRA), Anna Tunnicliffe (USA)
2008 Ben Ainslie (GBR), Alessandra Sensini (ITA)
2007 Ed Baird (USA), Claire Leroy (FRA)
2006 Mike Sanderson (NZL), Paige Railey (USA)
2005 Fernando Echavarri & Anton Paz (ESP), Ellen MacArthur (GBR)
2004 Robert Scheidt (BRA), Sofia Bekatorou & Emilia Tsoulfa (GRE)
2003 Russell Coutts (SUI), Siren Sundby (NOR)
2002 Ben Ainslie (GBR), Sofia Bekatorou & Emilia Tsoulfa (GRE)
2001 Robert Scheidt (BRA), Ellen MacArthur (GBR)
2000 Mark Reynolds & Magnus Liljedahl (USA), Shirley Robertson (GBR)
1999 Mateusz Kusznierewicz (POL), Margriet Matthijse (NED)
1998 Ben Ainslie (GBR), Carolijn Brouwer (NED)
1997 Pete Goss (GBR), Ruslana Taran & Elena Pakholchik (UKR)
1996 Jochen Schümann (GER), Lai Shan Lee (HKG)
1995 Russell Coutts (NZL), Isabelle Autissier (FRA)
1994 Peter Blake (NZL) & Robin Knox-Johnston (GBR), Theresa Zabell (ESP

Report by Daniel Smith – World Sailing

Editor’s note: It’s an Olympic year which will sway the vote. Our prediction for female winner is Hannah Mills/ Saskia Clark (GBR) who have been dominant in the 470 Women, winning gold in Rio before the Medal Race. For male winner, we expect to see Giles Scott (GBR) on the stage. His dominance in the Finn, also winning gold in Rio before the Medal Race, will be combined with his long suffering in Sir Ben Ainslie’s shadow. Standing by…

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