2022 Australian Sailing Awards Finalists Announced • Live Sail Die

The finalists for the 2022 Australian Sailing Awards have been announced, with clubs, volunteers and Australian Sailing Team stars all vying for recognition at the country’s top sailing awards.

In the Male and Female Sailor of the Year categories, finalists include world champions, Olympic gold medalists and Kiel Week champions.

Reigning ILCA 7 Olympic champion Matt Wearn OAM is a finalist in the Male Sailor of the Year category after coming second at the Princess Sofia Trophy regatta in Palma in April. Tom Slingsby OAM was also recognized as a finalist, with significant international wins in three classes during awards season. Rounding out the category is 2021 Hansa 303 World Doubles Champion Chris Symonds, who was recognized for his significant accomplishments by being named a finalist in the Male Sailor of the Year and Para Sailor of the Year categories.

Having already won Female Sailor of the Year in 2012, Nina Curtis is no stranger to the Australian Sailing Awards. She was again recognized as a finalist in the category for her winning results at several SailGP events during the season. Zoe Thomson is the second finalist, having placed first in the ILCA 6 class at Sail Melbourne in January and finishing sixth at Kiel Week. Mara Stransky is the third finalist included in the Female Sailor of the Year category, with a current world ranking of three and the Kiel 2022 Trophy of the Week under her belt.

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Albert Park Yacht Club is the first of the recognized finalists in the Club of the Year category, having demonstrated an inclusive and positive culture, led numerous community programs and doubled its number of coaches during the period of Awards. Another club that successfully runs a variety of inclusive community programs, the Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron has held three National Championships and eight State Championships in the past 12 months. Newcastle Cruising Yacht Club is the latest of the finalists in the Club of the Year category, leading keelboat participation in NSW and running a successful Sailing Academy which operates on the water six days a week.

The Volunteer of the Year category is also hotly contested this year, with several incredible nominations having been whittled down to just three – an almost impossible task. Peter Kinsman (VIC), Jennifer Potter (TAS) and Andy and Alison Byne (WA) were all named finalists for the National Award, with their selfless service, passion and optimism for the benefit of their endless local sailing communities.

The winners of each category will be announced during the National Sailing Awards on Friday 4 November at the magnificent Australian National Maritime Museum in Sydney.

Three new inductees to the Australian Sailing Hall of Fame will also be announced at the gala dinner, tickets to attend the evening can be purchased here.

For a full list of all finalists, check out the list below.

Male Sailor of the Year

  • Tom Slingsby OAM (Woollahra Sailing Club, NSW)
  • Chris Symonds (Wynyard Yacht Club/Australian Hansa Class Association Inc/Sailability Tasmania, TAS)
  • Matt Wearn OAM (Royal Perth Yacht Club/Fremantle Sailing Club, WA)

Female Sailor of the Year

  • Nina Curtis (Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club, New South Wales)
  • Mara Stransky (Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron/Queensland Laser Association, Queensland)
  • Zoe Thomson (Royal Freshwater Bay Yacht Club, WA)

Young Sailor of the Year

  • Ben Hinks and Carter Baker (Largs Bay Sailing Club/Brighton & Seacliff Sailing Club, SA 420 Association, SA)
  • Harry Joyner (Fremantle Sailing Club, WA)
  • Evie Saunders (Manly Yacht Club, New South Wales)

Para Sailor of the Year

  • Robert Crofts (Australian Hansa Class Association, WA)
  • Neil Rowsthorn (Southport Yacht Club, Queensland)
  • Chris Symonds (Wynyard Yacht Club/Australian Hansa Class Association Inc/Sailability Tasmania, TAS)

Offshore Sailor of the Year

  • Matt Allen AM (Cruising Yacht Club of Australia, NSW)
  • Lisa Blair (Cruising Yacht Club of Australia, NSW)
  • Rob Gough and John Saul (Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania/Sandy Bay Sailing Club/Derwent Sailing Squadron/Woollahra Sailing Club, TAS)

Coach of the year

  • Carolijn Brouwer & Ben Walkemeyer (Australian Sailing Team/Fremantle Sailing Club, NSW/WA)
  • Ben Durham (Royal Freshwater Bay Yacht Club, WA)
  • Jack Lewis (Sorrento Sailing Couta Boat Club/Victorian International Optimist Association, VIC)

club of the year

  • Albert Park Yacht Club (VIC)
  • Newcastle Cruising Yacht Club (NSW)
  • Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron (QLD)

Volunteer of the year

  • Andy and Alison Byne (Safety Bay Yacht Club, WA)
  • Peter Kinsman (Rye Yacht Club, VIC)
  • Jennifer Potter (Sandy Bay Sailing Club, TAS)

Instructor of the year

  • Scott Davis (Cairns Yacht Club Inc QLD)
  • Holly Hunt (Royal Freshwater Bay Yacht Club, WA)
  • Zoe Morris (Somers Yacht Club, VIC)

Official of the year

  • Andre Blasse (Black Rock Yacht Club/Australian OK Dinghy Association, VIC)
  • Marcus Cooper (Henley Sailing Club, International 505, SA)
  • Hugh Leicester (Middle Harbor Amateur Sailing Club Inc, Manly 16ft Skiff Sailing Club, NSW)

Sports Promotion Award

  • Nick Bez (Windsurfer Class Association of Australia, VIC)
  • Mike Middleton (Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron, Queensland)
  • Melvyn Steiner (Royal Motor Yacht Club Toronto, New South Wales)

Sports Professional Award

  • Hayley Clark (Royal Freshwater Bay Yacht Club, WA)
  • Michael Robinson (Keppel Bay Sailing Club, Queensland)
  • Madeline Salter (Adelaide Sailing Club, South Africa)

SheSails Awards

  • Louise Edwards (Goolwa Regatta Yacht Club, South Africa)
  • Mooloolaba Women’s Regatta (Mooloolaba Yacht Club, QLD)
  • Shelley White (Royal Freshwater Bay Yacht Club, WA)

Sustainability Award

  • Australia SailGP Team (Australia SailGP Team, NSW)
  • Chris Havre (Royal Melbourne Yacht Squadron, VIC)
  • Marine Environment Committee (Fremantle Sailing Club, WA)

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