U.S. sailor named best in the world

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The ISAF and Rolex are proud to announce that the male and female winners of the ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Awards 2009 are Torben Grael of Brazil and American Anna Tunnicliffe.

"I'd like to thank Rolex for their continued support - it's great what they do for our sport," said Tunnicliffe, upon being named the female ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year. "I've had great fun competing in a variety of classes, I love doing it, and I'd like to thank my sponsors, my teams, my parents for being my managers, and my husband for always allowing me to sail."

The ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Award is the highest award a sailor can receive in recognition of his/her outstanding achievements. The awards are presented annually based on a worldwide selection process that incorporates an open invitation to nominations, followed by a vote amongst the 130 member nations of the International Sailing Federation.

The awards have been held every year since 1994 and past winners include Peter Blake, Ellen MacArthur, Robert Scheidt and Russell Coutts. In 2008, the awards were presented to four-time Olympic medal winners Ben Ainslie and Alessandra Sensini.

Visit the ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Awards site at www.sailing.org/worldsailor.