Bay Area sailors named 2019 Yachtsman and Yachtswoman of the Year

US Sailing recognizes Mike Martin, Adam Lowry and Daniela Moroz aboard USS Midway in San Diego.

SAN DIEGO—Three sailors from the San Francisco Bay Area were named as the top racers for 2019, during US Sailing’s annual awards ceremony on Feb. 7. Mike Martin and Adam Lowry of Mill Valley shared the 2019 Yachtsman of the Year award, while Daniela Moroz, from Lafayette, was named 2019 Yachtswoman of the Year.

The US Sailing awards ceremony was held aboard USS Midway in San Diego. US Sailing hosts the Rolex Yachtsman and Yachtswoman of the Year awards ceremony annually and recognizes the best sailors for the previous 12 months.

Martin and Lowry were awarded for their International 505 championship. It is Martin’s first-ever Yachtsman of the Year win – he had been shortlisted for the award six times prior to his win on Feb. 7.

The duo also won the 505 North American Championship and 505 Canadian Championship in August 2019, as well as the Columbia Gorge One-Design Regatta – 505 in Portland, Oregon in July 2019.

It was the International 505 Championship in Fremantle, Australia, however, that put Martin and Lowry on a path to the Rolex Yachtsman of the Year nomination (and eventual win).

“They defeated the large fleet of 89 teams with a dominating performance. Martin and Lowry clinched the regatta before the final day of racing and did not race in the final two races of the championship and still won by 14-points over Mike Holt and Carl Smit,” US Sailing staff said in a statement about the Rolex Yachtsman of the Year winners. “The win for Martin marked his fourth 505 World Championship, and for Lowry it was his second.”

Moroz was named Rolex Yachtswoman of the Year shortly after her 19th birthday – and it’s the second time she’s won the award. She was named Rolex Yachtswoman of the Year in 2016, when she was just 16 years old. Moroz was also the first-ever kiteboarder and younger person (male or female) to win US Sailing’s most prestigious award.

“Moroz once again defended her Formula Kite World Championship with a resounding victory on Lake Garda in Italy, her fourth consecutive World Championship against a growing and increasingly talented women’s fleet of 30 competitors,” US Sailing staff said about the kiteboarder’s second Rolex Yachtswoman of the Year award. “Moroz continued her dominance by winning five of seven races and placing second in the two races she did not win. She won by three points over Russian challenger Elena Kalinina.”

The 2019 sailing resume for Moroz included wins in: Lake Garda, Italy (IKA Formula Kite Class World Championship); Katara Beach, Qatar (ANOC World Beach Games); and, Cagliari, Italy (Kite Foil World Series).

World-renown sailor Gary Jobson served as emcee of the US Sailing awards program.

Sisters Carmen and Emma Cowles won the Rolex Yachtswoman of the Year award last year; Jud Smith stood alongside the Cowles sisters as the Rolex Yachtsman of the Year recipient.

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