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Nick Craig wins the YJA Pantaenius Yachtsman of the Year for 2011

by Fiona Williams 10 Jan 2012 20:17 GMT 10 January 2012
Geoff Holt presents Nick Craig with the YJA Pantaenius Yachtsman of the Year Trophy © onEdition
Today, dinghy sailor Nick Craig won the coveted title of YJA Pantaenius Yachtsman of the Year for 2011. The announcement was made at an awards ceremony held at Trinity House, London. Nick not only won the highly competitive OK World Championship in 2011 but in doing so also became the only person ever, to hold the World, UK National and Inland championship titles. He also won the RS400 National championship. To conclude an outstanding year, Nick went on to secure an overall win of the extremely challenging Endeavour Championship for the 5th time. The Endeavour Championship is an annual invitation only event, held at Burnham-on-Crouch, to determine the overall dinghy champion of champions from the UK's most popular dinghy racing classes. Winning the Endeavour Trophy is and always has been recognised as an ultimate dinghy racing achievement. So to win five times, representing different classes throughout the years, puts Nick amongst the most versatile and talented dinghy sailors in the world.

The other finalists for the YJA Pantaenius Yachtsman of the Year award were Ben Ainslie CBE. Despite having already won three Olympic Gold medals and a Silver, Ben is far from sitting back and basking in the glory of his past successes. In this pre Olympic year he has worked hard to achieve yet more spectacular results including winning the 2011 Weymouth Skandia Sail for Gold Regatta and the Weymouth and Portland International Regatta (Olympic test event). His outstanding performance has once again earned him a place within Team GB to compete at the 2012 London Olympics. Dee Caffari MBE. In the 2010/11 two handed Barcelona World Race 38 year old Dee and her co skipper, Spaniard Anna Corbella finished in 6th place. On completion of this race Dee entered the record books as the only woman to have circumnavigated the globe, non stop, three times.

The trophy was presented by Geoff Holt MBE, the 2010 YJA Pantaenius Yachtsman of the Year winner.

The 2011 YJA Pantaenius Young Sailor of the Year was announced at a separate ceremony held on Saturday 7th January at the Tullett Prebon London International Boat Show. Annabel Vose and Megan Brickwood from Southampton were presented with the award by Skandia Team GBR's Iain Percy OBE. Annabel and Megan started 2011 by winning the Ladies World Title in Buenos Aires, Argentina in the 420 World Championships at just 16 years old and despite having a broken mast in one race. They won Silver and were 1st female crew at the Flanders Youth Regatta and won the Bronze medal at the 2011 Open 420 Junior European Championships.

Annabel and Megan were selected from amongst a strong field of nominees for this year's Award, 13 of which were drawn from the RYA Regional Young Sailor of the Year winners who are voted for by RYA affiliated sailing clubs and who were presented with their awards by Peter Cook, President of the YJA. These young sailors have made a significant impact on youth sailing, ranging from Gold medal winning achievements and overcoming adversity, to the huge amount of hard work and effort they give back to their clubs.

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