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Sailor of the Year Shortlist Announced


ISAF and Rolex are proud to announce the male and female sailors shortlisted for the ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Awards 2005.

The criteria for nomination for the ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Awards 2004 is “outstanding achievement” in the period 1 September 2004 to 31 August 2005. In 2005, a fascinating mix of sailors present outstanding achievements from across the spectrum of the sport and will set the race for some close voting.

The nominees are:

Female

Claire LEROY (FRA)
Ellen MACARTHUR (GBR)
Blanca MANCHÓN DOMINGUEZ (ESP)
Paige RAILEY (USA)

Male

Fernando ECHAVARRI ERASUN and Antón PAZ BLANCO (ESP)
Peter GILMOUR (AUS)
Finian MAYNARD (IVB)
Bruno PEYRON (FRA)
Vincent RIOU (FRA)
Rohan VEAL (AUS)

The 117 ISAF Member National Authorities (MNAs) – the national governing bodies for sailing – around the world will now be invited to vote for the one female nominee and one male nominee whom they feel deserve the honour of receiving the ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Award 2005.

The winners will be unveiled at the ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Awards Dinner and Presentation on 8 November 2005 at the Grand Copthorne Hotel in Singapore. Each winner will be presented with the prestigious ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Award Trophy and a Rolex timepiece.

The achievements of the sailors are:

Female

Claire LEROY (FRA)
Claire LEROY has been competing on the ISAF Graded match racing circuit for more than five years, and her results in 2004/2005 illustrate that she has progressed to the very top of the game. Claire has won four of the eight ISAF Graded women’s events she has entered and has only twice not made the final. Her results saw her reach the top spot of the ISAF Women’s Match Race World Rankings in May 2005 and she has held firm in pole position since. She can also be found racing on the open circuit and is no stranger to victory there either, ranked at 96 and with the accolade of being the highest ranked female skipper on the Open Rankings.

ISAF Women’s Match Racing World Ranking at the end of the nomination period (24 August 2005) – 1 ISAF Open Match Racing World Ranking at the end of the nomination period (24 August 2005) – 96

Women’s Circuit
7th – Bermuda Women’s International Match Race Championship, October 2004 – ISAF Grade 1
1st – Rolex Osprey Cup, October 2004 – ISAF Grade 1
1st – JPMorgan Fleming Women’s Challenge, February 2005 – ISAF Grade 3
1st – Spring Cup in Quay, April 2005 – ISAF Grade 3
2nd – International Women Match Race Criterium, April 2005 – ISAF Grade 1
2nd – BoatU.S. Santa Maria Cup, June 2005 – ISAF Grade 1
1st – Women’s Antibes Cup, June 2005 – ISAF Grade 2
3rd – Swedish Match Cup, July 2005 – ISAF Grade 1

Open Circuit
7th – Championnat de France Espoirs de Match Race, November 2004 – ISAF Grade 3
1st – Selective de Ligue St Quay, January 2005 – ISAF Grade 4
2nd – Finale de Zone Manche St Quay, February 2005 – ISAF Grade 4
10th – JPMorgan Fleming Winter Challenge Final, March 2005 – ISAF Grade 2
11th – Championnat de France de Match Racing 2005, March 2005 – ISAF Grade 3
6th – April in Antibes, April 2005 – ISAF Grade 3

Ellen MACARTHUR (GBR)
The single-handed round the world record was smashed in 2004 by Francis JOYON (FRA), but Ellen and her team always believed they could do better and, on 28 November 2004, Ellen set off on her maxi-trimaran B&Q on what would be the fastest single-handed circumnavigation ever. Ellen faced the full range of the ocean’s conditions and a nail biting final few days as she endured light winds which forced her to watch her lead on JOYON’s time gradually diminish. Sailing a total of 27,354 nautical miles, Ellen took 1 day, 8 hours, 35 minutes and 49 seconds off JOYON’s record, completing her voyage in just over 71 days. After a short rest Ellen was back out on the race course with a crew competing in the St. Nazaire to St. Malo race and the Plymouth to Roscoff Brittany Ferries 100 Mile Trophy.

WR – Around the world, non-stop, single-handed record, 27,354nm – 71 days, 14 hours, 18 minutes, 33 seconds – average speed 12.66 knots, 28 November 2004 – 7 February 2005 St. Nazaire to St. Malo (SNSM) – set new record for Maxi class category (not overall record), 284nm – 1 day, 3 hours, 23 minutes and 29 seconds, May 2005 (crewed) Awarded ‘Alternative Sportsperson of the Year’ at Laureus Sports Awards, May 2005 Plymouth to Roscoff Brittany Ferries 100 Mile Trophy (crewed), Time: 6 hours, 20 minutes and 33 seconds, June 2005

Blanca MANCHÓN DOMINGUEZ (ESP)
Blanca MANCHÓN DOMINGUEZ had already begun to make a name for herself on the windsurfing circuit when she became the youngest sailor at the 2004 Olympic Sailing Competition and 2005 has been another phenomenal year. With wins at four of the five ISAF graded events she has contested in the nomination period, her achievements speak for themselves. The 2005 ISAF Grade W Mistral World Championship took place in Italy in May and in an event beset by difficult conditions, Blanca blitzed the competition to take the gold medal with a 13 point margin. The Mistral European Youth Champion ran concurrently with the Worlds and Blanca won this title 120 points clear from the next youth sailor. It was therefore little surprise later in the year at the Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World Championship in Busan, Korea that Blanca should top the podium again. This time she did so with a day to spare, after winning six of the eleven races. Her results have seen her steadily climb the ISAF World Sailing Rankings to end the nomination period at number three. This young windsurfer is certainly one to watch for the future.

ISAF World Sailing Ranking at the end of the nomination period (3 August 2005) – 3

3rd – HRH Princess Sofia Trophy, March 2005 – ISAF Grade 2
1st – Mistral World Championship, May 2005 – Grade W
1st – World Festival on the Beach, May 2005 – ISAF Grade 3
1st – Mistral European Youth Championship, May 2005
1st – Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World Championship, July 2005 – ISAF Grade 2

Paige RAILEY (USA)
Paige RAILEY has exploded onto the Olympic circuit during the last nine months and firmly established herself as the force to be reckoned with in the Laser Radial. In January, Paige took victory at her first ISAF Graded Laser Radial event which was also the first ISAF Grade 1 event for the new Olympic women’s one person dinghy equipment. She followed up that victory with three more to end the nomination period with wins at five of the seven graded events she has entered. In July, Paige returned to an event she had contested three times before, and from which she had walked away with two medals, the Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World Championship which took place in Busan, Korea. Paige faced the cream of young talent from around the world, and a clear favourite to win the gold she produced another impressive performance, winning six of the eleven races and ending the Championship on top of the podium. This victory is another first as she is the only female to ever win more than one single-handed dinghy title at the ISAF Youth Worlds Championship. A few weeks later she was back on the water at the ISAF Grade CI Laser Radial European Championship in Split, Croatia where she topped the podium again and in doing so, boosted herself back to the top of the ISAF World Sailing Rankings, despite counting points from fewer regattas than those ranked behind her.

ISAF World Sailing Ranking at the end of the nomination period (3 August 2005) – 1

1st – Rolex Miami OCR, January 2005 – ISAF Grade 1
1st – Laser Midwinters East, February 2005 – ISAF Grade 1
1st – HRH Princess Sofia Trophy, March 2005 – ISAF Grade 2
7th – Holland Regatta, May 2005 – ISAF Grade 1
2nd – Kieler Woche, June 2005 – ISAF Grade 1
1st – ISAF Youth Worlds, July 2005 – ISAF Grade 2
1st – Laser Radial European Championship, August 2005 – ISAF Grade C1

Male

Fernando ECHAVARRI ERASUN & Antón PAZ BLANCO (ESP)
Tornado sailors Fernando ECHAVARRI ERASUN and Antón PAZ BLANCO have had quite a year. They finished off 2004 with a second place at the Christmas Race in Palamos, Spain and began 2005 with victory, taking five bullets from the nine race series at the ISAF Grade 2 Barcelona Olympic Sailing Week in March. Their performance through the season was consistent and really took off with a bang in May when they claimed the gold medal at the ISAF Grade 1 Holland Regatta. They followed up this result with the ISAF Grade W Tornado World Championship title in June and then did the double in August claiming the European Championship title as well. Their achievements also paid dividends in their ISAF World Ranking position and through the nomination period they climbed steadily up to the top spot which they claimed on 29 June.

ISAF World Sailing Ranking at the end of the nomination period (3 August 2005) – 1

2nd – Christmas Race, Dec 2004 – Ungraded
1st – Barcelona Olympic Sailing Week, March 2005 – ISAF Grade 2
4th – Princess Sofia Trophy, March 2005 – ISAF Grade 2
4th – Hobie Tiger World Championship, April 2005
9th – Semaine Olympique Française, April 2005 – ISAF Grade 1
1st – Holland Regatta, May 2005 – ISAF Grade 1
1st – Tornado World Championship, June 2005 – Grade W
1st – Tornado European Championship, August 2005 – Grade C1

Peter GILMOUR (AUS)
Peter GILMOUR has been a formidable opponent on the match racing circuit for many years, having raced with five America’s Cup syndicates and notching three ISAF World Championship titles to his belt. After a break from the ISAF Graded match racing circuit, the Australian has returned on superb form this season. Peter has entered eight ISAF Grade 1 events between October 2004 and August 2005 and claimed victory in three consecutive events. The first win was at Match Race Germany in May, where he defeated Jesper BANK (DEN). Later that month he was in Croatia wining his fifth ACI H1 Match Race title against Philippe PRESTI (FRA), before heading north again to Sweden for the Swedish Match Cup which he won for the sixth time in his career. Peter’s consistent performance also saw him taking that coveted top spot on the ISAF World Match Race Rankings on 22 June 2005.

ISAF Open Match Racing World Ranking at the end of the nomination period (24 August 2005) – 1
5th – King Edward VII Bermuda Gold Cup, October 2004 – ISAF Grade 1
4th – 15th Nippon International Match Race, November 2004 – ISAF Grade 1
2nd – Toscana Elba Cup, May 2005 – ISAF Grade 1
1st – Match Race Germany, May 2005 – ISAF Grade 1
1st – ACI H1 Match Race Cup, May 2005 – ISAF Grade 1
1st – Swedish Match Cup, July 2005 – ISAF Grade 1
3rd – Portugal Match Cup, July 2005 – ISAF Grade 1
6th – St Moritz Match Race, August 2005 – ISAF Grade 1

Finian MAYNARD (IVB)
Finian MAYNARD became sailing’s fastest man on water when he broke the 500 metre course record in November 2004 sailing on The Canal or the “French Trench” near Saintes Maries de la Mer in France with an official speed of 46.82 knots. Breaking the record, which had been set by the innovative asymmetric trimaran Yellow Pages in 1993, and bringing it back to windsurfing was not enough for Finian and he continued to chase his dream. In April, the conditions on The Canal were perfect and he broke his own record by nearly two knots recording a speed of 48.70 knots, tantalizingly close to that elusive 50 knot barrier. It took almost two years of preparation from when Finian and the Masters of Speed team began the rebuild of The Canal to make it the perfect venue for speed sailing record attempts and there is little doubt that Finian will be back on the “French Trench” and the 50 knot barrier will tumble.

Finian’s talents are not restricted to speed sailing and he is a regular competitor on the Formula and Slalom circuits and, proving his skill, he took the European championship title in July with a race to spare.

WR – 48.70 knots – WSSRC 500m course record, outright & 10sqM, April 2005
WR – 46.82 knots – WSSRC 500m course record, outright & 10sqM, November 2004
1st – IFCA Slalom Europeans, June 2005
3rd – IFCA Slalom Worlds, July 2005
3rd – ISA Speedsurfing Grand Prix, July 2005

Bruno PEYRON (FRA)
The Jules Verne Trophy is the ultimate target for the offshore speed sailor and Bruno PEYRON is a man who has more miles than most to his credit. Despite the disappointment of abandoning his record attempt in March 2004, it was not long before Bruno and his team were back on the start line. In September 2004 the team broke the Marseille to Catharge Record, before they returned to base in Lorient, France to prepare for their main goal. On 24 January 2005, the Maxi-catamaran Orange II began another attempt to win the Jules Verne Trophy and the outright round the world record. Just over seven weeks later, skippered masterfully by Bruno, Orange II was back, having swallowed up the oceans and broken the record by more than seven days – an unbelievable achievement by an outstanding sailor.

Between May and July, Bruno was in action in the Nokia Oops Cup, a combination of offshore races and city races sailed in Sweden, Finland, Poland, Denmark, Norway and Russia using the Formula 60 trimarans. Bruno and his Stena Sovcomflot team did not finish below third in any of the stages and won the overall prize with a race to spare.

WR – Around the World, non-stop, crewed record – 50 days, 16 hours, 20 minutes and 4 seconds, Orange II, average speed 17.89 knots, 24 January-16 March 2005
WR – Marseille to Catharge outright ‘The Transmed record’, crewed – 17 hours, 56 minutes and 33 seconds, Orange II, 458nm, average speed 25.53 knots, 24-25 September 2004
1st – Nokia Oops Cup – Stena Sovcomflot, May-July 2005

Vincent RIOU (FRA)
The Vendée Globe is one of the most demanding round the world yacht races and through that race Vincent RIOU came out from the wings onto centre stage. Vincent sailed a spectacular race in a highly competitive field in which the lead changed numerous times. As the finish approached the three leading boats, Vincent’s PRB, Boundelle skippered by Jean-Pierre LE CAM (FRA) and Mike GOLDING’s (GBR) Ecover played a cat and mouse game of psychological warfare as they pushed themselves and their boats to the very edge. The final result went down to the wire and Vincent spent his last few days of the race keeping a very close eye on the progress of second placed Boundelle who had held the lead as close as three days before he finished. On 2 February 2005, Vincent returned to Les Sables de’Olonne to a hero’s welcome for winning the Vendée Globe 2004/2005. Alongside victory came another prize, a new single-handed round the world monohull record which took more than five days off his friend Michel DESJOYEAUX’s (FRA) record from 2002.

1st – Vendée Globe 2004/2005, PRB, 7 November 2004-2 February 2005
WR – Round the world, non stop, single-handed monohull record, 12,760nm, PRB, 87 days, 10 hours, 47 minutes and 55 seconds – average speed 10.37 knots and beating the record by 5 days, 17 hours, 9 minutes and 37 seconds, 7 November 2004-2 February 2005

Rohan VEAL (AUS)
Rohan VEAL is considered by many to be the most highly skilled hydrofoil sailor in the world. Rohan’s talents were set in stone at the 2005 International Moth World Championship where he blitzed the competition, winning every race in a variety of conditions by anything from two to 17 minutes. Rohan’s performance was the most dominant in Moth Class history and he is the first sailor to ever win the World title using hydrofoils. Rohan’s talents on the water are matched by a drive to achieve off the water. His pursuit of the best designs and collaborations and his dedication to his sport is further illustrated by his commitment to the younger sailors in his class and yacht club who regularly benefit from his advice, experience and equipment.

1st – 2005 International Moth World Championship, January 2005
1st – 2004/5 International Moth Australian Open Championship, December 2004
2nd – 2004/5 International Moth Australian Championship, December 2004
3rd – 2005 International Moth European Championship, August 2005
1st – 2005 South Pacific Moth Champion, January 2005

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