Australian Tom Slingsby has cemented his place as one of the greatest sailors of his generation after winning the male 2023 Rolex World Sailor of the Year Award at the World Sailing Awards in Málaga.
This is the third time Slingsby has taken out the top honour in world sailing, having also won the award in 2010 and 2021. It comes off the back of another successful season with the Australia SailGP Team and his work as skipper of American Magic, who will seek success in the America’s Cup next year.
Slingsby said: “I’m super humbled to be in this position. Previously when I’ve won this award, it’s been after a Laser world title or a Moth world title but this time it was purely sailing with teams.
“American Magic have had a rough journey so far in their America’s Cup campaign, but it feels like we’re really turning a chapter and there are really exciting things to come.
“And then with the Australian SailGP team, these are some of my oldest and best friends in the world and I’m so fortunate to go sailing with them and I’d be nothing without those guys behind me.”
It was another glamour year for Slingsby in 2023. In May he guided the Australia SailGP team to a third consecutive title, maintaining his position as the only skipper to have won the SailGP trophy, and earlier this month he was inducted into the Australian Sailing Hall of Fame.
The Rolex World Sailor of the Year awards are decided by an expert panel and a public vote. Slingsby was separated from his nearest competitor by fewer than 20 votes.
“The Australian sailing community is incredibly proud of Tom and his achievements on the world stage,” said Australian Sailing President Alistair Murray AM.
“This award is richly deserved. It has been such a thrill watching Tom’s journey from a junior sailor in Gosford to his Olympic Gold, and now for a third time reaching the pinnacle of the sport in being recognised as the best sailor in the world.
“Not only has he won so many world championships across a range of classes, but to see Tom leading the Australia SailGP Team so successfully in an event that is capturing the attention of the masses around the globe makes us all very proud.”
South African Kirsten Neuschäfer was named female 2023 Rolex World Sailor of the Year after writing her name into the history books by becoming the first woman to finish first in the solo Golden Globe Race.
Among the other awards, the Magenta Project won the 11th Hour Racing Sustainability Award, the AC40 was named Boat of the Year, 11th Hour Racing won Team of the Year, Dick Rose was presented with the Beppe Croce Trophy and the Andrew Simpson Foundation won the President’s Development Award.
You can read more about the winners here.
Visit the World Sailing website for a full list of World Sailor of the Year winners.