ISAF names Sailors of the Year for 2005 - Soundings Online

ISAF names Sailors of the Year for 2005

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The International Sailing Federation and Rolex on Nov. 8 named Dame Ellen MacArthur of Great Britain and Tornado World Champions Fernando Echavarri Erasun and Antón Paz Blanco of Spain as winners of the ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Awards 2005.

The International Sailing Federation and Rolex on Nov. 8 named Dame Ellen MacArthur of Great Britain and Tornado World Champions Fernando Echavarri Erasun and Antón Paz Blanco of Spain as winners of the ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Awards 2005.

At an awards ceremony in Singapore, the three sailors were honored for their outstanding sailing achievements between Sept. 1, 2004, and Aug. 31, 2005, when MacArthur completed her record-breaking solo sprint around the world in her maxi-trimaran B&Q and Echavarri and Paz were crowned Tornado World and European Champions after a string of outstanding results.

This is the second time (2001) that Ellen MacArthur, 29, has won the female ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Award. On Feb. 7, 2005, MacArthur carved a place in history by crossing the finishing line off the coast of Brittany, France, to set a new single-handed round the world non-stop record. She sliced more than a day off Francis Joyon’s time set in 2004, to finish in 71 days, 14 hours, 18 minutes and 33 seconds, achieving an average speed of 12.66 knots over the 27,354 nautical mile course.

Tornado sailors Fernando Echavarri Erasun and Antón Paz Blanco continued in 2005 where they left off the previous year, starting with victory at the ISAF Grade 2 Barcelona Olympic Sailing Week in March where they won five of the nine races. In May, they took the gold medal at the ISAF Grade 1 Holland Regatta, then followed it up the next month by winning the ISAF Grade W Tornado World Championship.

In August, they reinforced their credentials on the Tornado circuit by adding the European Championship title to their portfolio and as a result accumulated more points to boost their ISAF World Ranking position. Through the nomination period they climbed steadily to the top spot, making it theirs on June 29.