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Top sailors named

JAN. 13 — US Sailing announced Wednesday that Nick Scandone, of Fountain Valley, Calif., and Sally Barkow, of Nashotah, Wis., were respectively named the 2005 Rolex Yachtsman and Yachtswoman of the Year.

Scandone was recognized for his win of the 2005 2.4 Metre World Championship held in Italy in September, beating seven world champions as well as three Paralympic medalists. Scandone, who is 39 and suffers from Lou Gehrig’s disease, also successfully defended his U.S. Independence Cup/North American Challenge Cup title, and took top honors at the America’s Disabled/Open Regatta.

Barkow was recognized for her string of wins at a number of noteworthy international sailing events in 2005, including the ISAF St. Quay Match Race and the Virtual Spectator ISAF Women’s Match Racing World Championship. During US Sailing’s Rolex International Women’s Keelboat Championship, the 25-year-old Barkow trumped several Olympians, world champions and three previous winners of the Rolex Yachtswoman of the Year award, taking first place.

US Sailing’s Rolex Yachtsman and Yachtswoman of the Year Awards, which recognize outstanding on-the-water achievement during the year, were established in 1961 and have been sponsored by Rolex Watch, U.S.A since 1980. A panel of sailing journalists selected Scandone and Barkow from a list of 12 sailors, including nine men and three women. The awards are to be presented at a Feb. 24 luncheon at the New York Yacht Club.

— Jason Fell