The spectacular scenery and historic presence of San Francisco’s St. Francis Yacht Club offered the perfect backdrop for the most prestigious competitive sailing awards in the United States.
On Thursday, February 28, Carmen and Emma Cowles (Larchmont, N.Y.) and Jud Smith (Gloucester, Mass.), were joined by family and friends, crew and teammates, coaches and supporters, past winners, sailing dignitaries, and representatives from US Sailing and Rolex, to celebrate US Sailing’s 2018 Rolex Yachtsman and Yachtswomen of the Year.
This year’s ceremony featured a new and interactive format. Emcee Gary Jobson conducted interviews with the 2018 award finalists and winners. These sailors shared stories from their 2018 season and their sailing careers in general, while giving thanks to all their supporters.
At the start of the program, Cory Sertl, President of US Sailing, and Luca Bernasconi, CEO and President of Rolex Watch USA, greeted the audience, congratulated the winners and finalists, and offered their own personal notes to the presentation.
Smith won the 2018 J/70 World Championship and the Cowles sisters won the Girl’s International 420 Youth Sailing World Championship. Last week they were officially announced as Rolex Yachtsman and Yachtswomen of the Year for their remarkable sailing performances in 2018.