Ceremony at Trinity House London

Solo circumnavigator, Sam Davies has been crowned The 2009 YJA Pantaenius Yachtsman of the Year today (Tuesday 12th January), at an awards ceremony at

Trinity House, London.

The award was presented by Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, himself a previous winner.

Sam thanked her team at Roxy Sailing for all their hard work in getting her third across the line (fourth overall) in 2008-09’s Vendee Globe race. She also congratulated Paul Goodison and Ian Williams, the other nominees.

Sam was the first placed Briton in the race, competed in the

Transat Jacque Vabre and was also

nominated for the ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Award.

Download PBO’s ‘Super Sam’ article from May 2009 FREE! Click here

The presentation began with a review of the year’s boating highlights including Hilary Lister’s record-breaking round Britain solo sail and a special presentation by Sir Robin Knox-Johnston to Lloyd Hamilton, racing manager at the veterans’ sailing charity ‘Toe in the Water’ for his dedication to the cause of getting wounded British servicemen and women on to the water and in to competitive sailing.

Rod Carr, who steps down as CEO of the Royal Yachting Association in March this year, accepted a YJA award for his years of service to the RYA.

The two other finalists were:

  • Paul Goodison, World Laser champion, Olympic Gold medal and five times European champion. Paul is the only sailor worldwide to hold all three awards at the same time and was nominated for the ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Award.
  • Ian Williams – two times World Match Race champion. Ian became the first British National to be crowned Match Racing World champion in the event’s 19 year history.

The YJA Pantaenius Yachtsman of the Year Award is open to any British resident or passport holder who has made an outstanding achievement under sail or power during 2009.

The award was initiated in 1955 by Sir Max Aitken and now bears the names of the greatest achievers in British yachting circles over the past five decades.

Previous winners include Eric Hiscock, Sir Francis Chichester, Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, Sir Chay Blyth, Sir Edward Heath, Tracy Edwards MBE, Dame Ellen MacArthur and Ben Ainslie CBE.

The winners of both the Young Sailor and Yachtman of the year awards are nominated by the public and elected by the votes of the Yachting Journalists’ Association (YJA).

Pantaenius is one of the leading yacht insurance intermediaries in Europe and took over sponsoring the awards from Raymarine last year.