Winners Announced: ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Awards 2002
Last night in Limassol, Cyprus, the International Sailing Federation announced the winners of the ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Awards 2002, in recognition of outstanding sailing achievement during the period 1 September 2001 through to 31 August 2002.
The Awards Presentation, which was hosted by the 1996 Olympic Gold Medallist Nikos Kaklamanakis of Greece, was attended by more than four hundred guests, including international sailors and leading figures from the sailing world.
On receiving the ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Award from His Majesty King Constantine, ISAF President of Honour, Sofia Bekatorou and Emilia Tsoulfa commented:
“I would like to congratulate everyone for their nomination. Emilia and I feel very exceptional being nominated amongst such important sailors.
For us, being voted as the winners is not only a great honour for us, since Emilia and I represent a country that has a great history in sailing, but it is also a great motive and incentive towards the 2004 Olympic Regatta.
We strongly appreciate your recognition and this award provides us with the strength we need to continue towards our dream.”
Sofia and Emilia were nominated in recognition of their domination in the Olympic women’s double-handed event in the 470 Class. Their opening season result of a win at the ISAF Grade 1 SPA Regatta set the standard, and was followed by wins at virtually every ISAF Grade 1 and Grade 2 event they entered in the past 12 months. They have sat firmly at the top of the ISAF World Rankings during the period of nomination, having successfully defended their World Champion title twice, in September 2001 and again in September 2002 (although September 2002 was outside the period of nomination). Similarly, they defended their European Championship title in July 2002. With a win at the 2002 Athens Test Event, Sofia and Emilia have their sights set firmly on Olympic Gold for Athens 2004.
The winners were each presented with a Rolex Yachtmaster chronometer and an ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Trophy; which is a sphere of soladite depicting the world, crowned by five silver spinnakers representing the continents.
The nominees for the respective female ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Awards 2002 were:
Sofia Bekatorou and Emilia Tsoulfa (GRE)
Christine Briand (FRA)
Adrienne Cahalan (AUS) and Helena Darvelid (SWE)
Sari Multala (FIN)
Alessandra Sensini (ITA)
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