Awards & Trophies

US Sailing’s Rolex Yachtsman & Yachtswoman of the Year Awards

Established in 1961 by US Sailing and sponsored by Rolex Watch U.S.A. since 1980, the Yachtsman of the Year award recognizes one male sailor for his individual outstanding on-the-water achievement within the calendar year; the Yachtswoman of the Year award recognizes one female sailor for her individual outstanding on-the-water achievement within the calendar year.

These prestigious awards are viewed by the sail-racing industry as among the nation’s top sailing distinctions. A slate of nominees, determined by the membership of US Sailing, is presented to a panel of accomplished sailing journalists, who together discuss the merits of each nominee and then vote to determine the ultimate winners.

Additional Information

More About the Awards:

Established in 1961 by US Sailing and sponsored by Rolex Watch, U.S.A. since 1980, the annual presentation of US Sailing’s Rolex Yachtsman and Yachtswoman of the Year awards recognize the individual male and female U.S. sailor who has demonstrated on-the-water excellence at international and/or national events to earn their place in the history of the sport.

US Sailing accepted nominations for these prestigious awards, widely acknowledged as the foremost individual sailing honors in the nation, through November 30, 2017. Each member of US Sailing was eligible nominate the one male and one female sailor they believe turned in the most outstanding on-the-water performance during the 2017 calendar year.

These prestigious awards are viewed by the sail-racing industry as among the nation’s top sailing distinctions. A slate of nominees, determined by the membership of US Sailing, is presented to a panel of accomplished sailing journalists, who together discuss the merits of each nominee and then vote to determine the ultimate winners.

Awards Criteria:

  • Must be eligible to represent the USA under World Sailing regulations, and actually representing the USA at the event(s) for which the nominee is being considered for the award.
  • Awards recognize the individual male and female U.S. sailor who has demonstrated on-the-water excellence in the calendar year. In the past, there have been outstanding situations resulting in a skipper and crew nomination being accepted.
  • Must have won a major international or national event and/or performed at a high level consistently in multiple events against elite competition.
  • There is no minimum age required to win the award.
  • The awards are not based on career racing results (lifetime achievements) or contributions to the sport outside of racing.

Previous Award Recipients

2017 – Peter Duncan/Erika Reineke

2016 – Caleb Paine/Daniela Moroz

2015 – Steve Benjamin/Annie Haeger

2014 – Terry Hutchinson/Stephanie Roble

2013 – Brian Porter/Jody Starck

2012 – Johnny Heineken/Jen French

2011 – Bill Hardesty/Anna Tunnicliffe

2010 – Stan Honey/Anna Tunnicliffe

2009 – Bora Gulari/Anna Tunnicliffe

2008 – Terry Hutchinson/Anna Tunnicliffe

2007 – Jeff Linton/Sally Barkow

2006 – Jud Smith/Paige Railey

2005 – Nick Scandone/Sally Barkow

2004 – Paul Foerster & Kevin Burnham/Jody Swanson

2003 – Augie Diaz/Hannah Swett

2002 – John Kostecki/Liz Baylis

2001 – Steve Fossett/Cory Sertl

2000 – Mark Reynolds & Magnus Liljedahl/JJ Isler & Pease Glaser

1999 – Eric Doyle/Dawn Riley

1998 – Paul Cayard /Betsy (Gelenitis) Alison

1997 – Chris Larson/JJ Isler

1996 – Dave Ullman/Courtenay (Becker) Dey

1995 – Ed Baird/Cory Sertl

1994 – Ken Read/Danielle Brennan

1993 – Cam Lewis/Betsy (Gelenitis) Alison

1992 – Kevin Mahaney/Julia Trotman

1991 – Ed Adams/JJ Isler

1990 – Jim Brady/Courtenay Becker

1989 – Larry Klein/Jody Swanson

1988 – John Kostecki/Allison Jolly & Lynne Jewell

1987 – Ed Adams/Susan Dierdorff Taylor

1986 – Dennis Conner/JJ Isler

1985 – Ken Read/Kathy Steele & Heidi Backus

1984 – Bill Buchan/Betsy Gelenitis

1983 – Dave Curtis/Wendy Thomson

1982 – Randy Smyth/Betsy Gelenitis

1981 – Dave Curtis/Betsy Gelenitis

1980 – Dennis Conner/Lynne Jewell

1979 – Ted Turner/Nell Taylor

1978 – Buddy Melges/Bonnie Shore

1977 – Ted Turner/Jan O’Malley

1976 – Lowell North/Allison Jolly

1975 – Dennis Conner/Joan Ellis

1974 – Ted Hood/Sally Lindsay

1973 – Ted Turner/Sally Lindsay

1972 – Buddy Melges/Jane Pegel

1971 – Ding Schoonmaker/Jane Pegel

1970 – Ted Turner/Jan O’Malley

1969 – Robert F. Johnson/Jan O’Malley

1968 – Lowell North/June Methot

1967 – Bus Mosbacher/Betty Foulk

1966 – Bill Cox/Jerie Clark

1965 – Dick Tillman/Timothea (Schneider) Larr

1964 – Bob Bavier/Jane Pegel

1963 – Joe Duplin/Leggie Mertz

1962 – Bus Mosbacher/Sue Sinclair

1961 – Buddy Melges/Timothea Schneider