YOTY 2017

Britain’s top yachting awards
Search is on to find the YJA Yachtsman of the Year 2017 and YJA Young Sailor of the Year 2017
New Young Bloggers Award

YJA Chairman Barry Pickthall, left and Pete Bradshaw, chief executive of Premier Marinas, launch the awards.
All Photos: Sam Kurtul

Nominations for Yachtsman and Young Sailor now closed

Nominations for the 2017 YJA Yachtsman of the Year Awards have opened to start the selection process of finding Britain’s top Yachtsman and Young Sailor of the year.

The new YJA Young Bloggers Competition, intended to give young bloggers, journalists,video and photographers and aspiring radio presenters a chance to get their first break in yachting journalism has also been launched.

Nominations for both awards and the Young Bloggers competition were launched at the Yachtmarket.com Southampton Boat Show, and close on Sunday, October 15, 2017. Nominations may be made online via the YJA website as well as the Boat Show and Premier Marinas websites. Nomination forms were also be available on other exhibition stands, and are available at yacht clubs, and all nine Premier Marinas in the South.

The prestigious yachting awards opened at a reception hosted by Premier Marinas, attended by past award winners and members of the Yachting Journalists’ Association.

YJA Chairman Barry Pickthall said: “Our awards represent the pinnacle of sailing achievement and are a measure of the very best skills and prowess among established yachtsmen and women and the stars of the future. The current Yachtsman of the Year also demonstrated extreme bravery.”

Nominations for the two prestigious awards may be made by the public and anyone within the yachting community and can include those invoved in dinghy sailing, windsurfing, offshore and ocean racing, short-handed and long distance cruising and from the world of power boating. Entries for the Young Bloggers competition are expected to attract interest from young journalists and photographers anxious to break into yachting journalism.

The awards provide an opportunity for the public to make their yachting heroes or rising stars and celebrate the achievements of up and coming talent.

Barry Pickthall encourages the yachting community to make their nominations without delay. “Don’t rely on someone else to nominate successes achieved by British yachtsmen and women or the Young Sailor of the Year award which gives enormous inspiration and encuragement to tomorrow’s world champions. Nominating couldn’t be simpler.”

Nominations can be made online at www.yja.world or by posting back one of the nomination cards distributed throughout the Boat Show to yacht clubs across the country and from any Premier Marinas’ site across the south of England.

Nominations for the Yachtsman and Young Sailor awards are welcome until Sunday, October 29, 2017. Entries for the Young Bloggers competition close on November 30. The winners for each award will be announced on Tuesday, January 9, 2018 at Trinity House, London.

Established in 1955 by Sir Max Aitken, Battle of Britain pilot, chirman of Express Newspapers and himself a leading yachtsman in both sail and power, the Yachtsman of the Year is now established as one of the top yachting honours. Previous winners include Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, Dame Ellen MacArthur and four time Olympic gold medallist, Sir Ben Ainslie. The Young Sailor award was first made in 1983.

The current title holders are Gavin Reid, a 28-year-old adventurer who took part in the 2015-2016 Clipper Round the World Race for amateur sailors, for his heroic mid-ocean rescue of a sailor found trapped at the top of the mast on another yacht with the 2016 boats.com YJA Yachtsman of the Year Award and Elliott Kuzyk, then 15, from Poole, Dorset who won the 2016 Young Sailor award after winning the 2016 Topper World championship.

Current Yachtsman of the
Year, Gavin Reid Current Young Sailor of the Year, Elliott Kuzyk

Current Yachtsman of the
Year, Gavin Reid
Current Young Sailor of the Year, Elliott Kuzyk

NOMINATIONS may be made for the Yachtsman and Young Sailor awards and the new YJA Blogger competition may be made below.