Sailor of the Month

Sailors of the Year – Alex Burger & Benji Daniel

by Richard Crockett It is never easy as a judge deciding who is the SAILING Mag Blog ‘Sailor of the Year’ as competition for the top spot is always tight. This year was no different, although two young sailors stood out head and shoulders above everyone else, and were a unanimous choice of the four anonymous judges in this competition. This competition has always been about one individual, not a team, but the judges felt that this year that rule ... Read More »

December 2017 Sailor of the Month – Mike Hayton

Mike Hayton’s Nitro sailing team are now in their fourth year of campaigning in Cape Town, and not only do their results continue to impress, but they’ve now started competing in the offshore races being offered, and their results there are nothing to be scoffed at! In the two offshore races this year, Nitro has taken both line and handicap honours twice, while setting a new record in the Mossel Bay race. They have just won, both on line and ... Read More »

October 2017 Sailor of the Month – Alex Burger

Alex Burger and Benji Daniel have each previously done a 29er Worlds, but earlier this year they teamed up for the 2017 worlds – and ultimately won it in fine style too! Alex was on trapeze and Benji on the helm. They had intense training sessions in both Durban and Cape Town, and were expertly guided and coached by Roger Hudson of RaceAhead. Plus several other sailors trained with them to give them valuable boat-on-boat experience – all of which ... Read More »

September 2017 Sailor of the Month – Benji Daniel

It would be a travesty if Benji Daniel and his crew Alex Burger were not widely recognised for winning the 29er World Championships in such grand style. Well they are now (again!) as Benji is our Sailor of the Month for September – and a very fitting and deserving winner he is too, especially as he is just 16 years old and still at school. He has been sailing since the age of 10, so in just 6 years has ... Read More »

August 2017 Sailor of the Month – Blaine Dodds

One simply runs out of superlatives with which to describe Blaine Dodds and his ability to always be in the hunt for major Hobie titles, irrespective of where he competes in the world. He also has too many podium finishes at world championships to be able to keep count! In the recent Hobie Multiclass Worlds in Holland, Dodds put in a very late charge to end up second in the Hobie 14 Worlds, a title he previously won in 2015. ... Read More »

JULY 2017 Sailor of the Month – Andrew Tarboton

The Musto Skiff World Championships were held in Palma, Spain during June, and Tarboton finished 3rd in a very competitive fleet of 63 boats with 14 races in a good cross-section of conditions. He started his sailing career at the Henley-Midmar Yacht Club in 1993 racing in an Optimist as well as crewing for either his mum or dad in a Miracle. He has raced extensively in both dinghies and keelboats, both as skipper and crew and has won National ... Read More »

June 2017 – Calvin Gibbs

Gibbs started his sailing career at Imperial Yacht Club in Optimists, quickly taking to the sport and working his way up through the ranks to the top of the leader-board. He won the 2012 Optimist Youth Nationals, plus the selection regatta. He competed in the 2013 Optimist African Champs, placing second in the Optimists. Just last month at the Western Cape Championships in Mossel Bay he won 9 out of 10 races in the 20-strong Laser Radial fleet. Interestingly he ... Read More »

May 2017 – Jonathan Ham

Jonathan Ham was recently crowned the Dolphin class National champion. The fact that his crew, Ruth Avierinos, had never sailed before did not seem to bother him at all, and in his own quiet and very cheerful way he managed to teach her the skills of sailing, and together they took gold. This is Jonathan’s second national title for the season as he won the Dabchick Nationals in December. He also holds numerous provincial titles. He just seems to win ... Read More »

April 2017 – Lord Irvine Laidlaw

Lord Laidlaw puts a remarkable amount into sailing in South Africa. He sponsors events, flies in world class race officers to run them and has South Africans on his yachts when he races internationally. Now he has underwritten the new Cape 31. The yacht not only looks sensational, it had also achieved 8 orders within just weeks of launch, proving the pent-up demand for a modern, relatively affordable racing yacht in RSA. Moreover, with the team he has assembled, it ... Read More »

March 2017 – Mikhayla Bader

At just 22 years young Mikhayla has already crammed so much sailing into her life, and done so much to support and administer the sport at all levels. She is a Commerce Student and a staunch member of the UCT Yacht Club, committee member, organiser and planner of numerous successful sailing campaigns. She was the bow-person on the UCTYC Lipton Cup entry last year. She is also a regular member of the Nitro crew, being active on the bow. She ... Read More »

February 2017 – Matt Ashwell

Matt Ashwell (13) learnt to sail at Milnerton Aquatic Club when he was nine. His talent immediately came to the fore, so naturally he advanced in the sport very quickly. During the Youth Nationals at Theewaters in December he won the Optimist title for the second consecutive year. This was no easy feat as he scored two UNFs. Fortunately he received redress on one of those – and went on to win convincingly. He is a very humble young man ... Read More »