Lewin-LaFrance sisters named Rolex Sailors of the Year

Published on October 19th, 2022

(October 19, 2022) – Antonia and Georgia Lewin-LaFrance (Chester, NS), were named today Sail Canada’s Rolex Sailors of the Year for 2021-2022, while Sarah Douglas and Tom Ramshaw received the Gallagher Skippers’ Plan Female and Male Athletes of the Year Awards at the Royal Nova Scotia Yacht Squadron.

The awards were handed out during Canada’s Celebration of Sailing, which celebrates performances and experiences of Canada’s high-performance sailors of the past, present and future, and was attended by approximately 110 guests including members from Sail Canada’s National Team and Development Squad as well as from the Canada SailGP Team, and several people involved in sailing in Nova Scotia

Antonia and Georgia Lewin-LaFrance, representing the Chester Yacht Club and the Royal Nova Scotia Yacht Squadron, won the award for the very first time, given annually to individuals who have provided global recognition to Canadian sailing and Sail Canada.

This award has been given out annually since 1986 to renowned leaders that have attained high levels of excellence with significant results and accomplishments in world events or activities. Along with recognition for exemplary sportsmanship, they have held the respect of their fellow sailors.

During the time period ranging from August 7, 2021, to September 14, 2022, the Lewin-LaFrance sisters won the bronze medal at the 2021 49erFX European Championships held in Greece, then took the 6th spot at the 2021 49erFX Sailing World Championships held in Oman, posting the best Canadian performance ever at this competition that has been held since 2013.

They also took the third spot at the 2022 Kiel Week event, while taking part in multiple races with the Canada SailGP Team.

Amongst previous winners of Sail Canada’s Rolex Sailor of the Year award, Canada’s Olympic and Paralympic medalists Evert Bastet (2007), Terry McLaughlin (2001 and 2013), John McRoberts and Jackie Gay (2016), as well as Paul Tingley (2008) are all on that prestigious list, as is Ross MacDonald, who won it three times (1990, 1992 with Eric Jespersen and 2004 with Mike Wolfs).

Details: https://www.sailing.ca/rolex-sailor-of-the-year-award/

Gallagher Skippers’ Plan Female Athlete of the Year Award
The award is for a current Canadian Sailing Team athlete/team with a record of outstanding achievement in national and international competition. The winners are also chosen because they have brought recognition to Canadian competitive sailing, set an example for other competitors through behavior and manner, and have demonstrated leadership and sportsmanship.

This is the third time the 28-year old sailor Sarah Douglas (Toronto, ON) has won the award.
During the time period ranging from January 1, 2020, to December 31, 2021, she took the 6th spot overall in ILCA 6 at her first Olympic Games in Tokyo in July 2021, therefore recording the best Canadian female performance in an individual sailing event at the Olympic Games.

On the road to Tokyo, she also finished 6th overall at the 2020 European Championships in Poland, third at the 2021 Clearwater Olympic Classes Regatta as well as at the 2021 Lauderdale OCR, and first at the 2021 Laser Midwinters East.

Details: https://www.sailing.ca/skippers-plan-female-athlete-team-of-the-year-award-past-winners

Gallagher Skippers’ Plan Male Athlete of the Year Award
The award is for a current Canadian Sailing Team athlete/team with a record of outstanding achievement in national and international competition. The winners are also chosen because they have brought recognition to Canadian competitive sailing, set an example for other competitors through behavior and manner, and have demonstrated leadership and sportsmanship.

This is the third time the two-time Olympian Tom Ramshaw (Toronto, ON) has won the award

During the time period ranging from January 1, 2020, to December 31, 2021, Ramshaw finished in 10th position at the Tokyo Olympic Games, in the last Finn class competition to ever be contested at the Games.

In preparing for the Olympic races, he finished 6th at the 2020 Kiel Week event and 10th at the 2021 European Championships. Following Tokyo 2020, he switched to the ILCA 7 class because Finn will no longer be part of the Olympic program at Paris 2024.

Details: https://www.sailing.ca/skippers-plan-male-athlete-team-of-the-year-past-winners/

Source: Sail Canada

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