Sailor of the Year, local press also rallied to support favorites

Never has participation in the Sailor of the Year, the most prestigious award in Italian sailing, been so “heartfelt” as this year. At least for now, with less than 5 days to go before the first round of voting. Meanwhile, we thank you: at the time of writing, there are already 8727
votes that were cast on our online survey, which will remain open until noon on Feb. 15.


But what amazed us most was the phenomenon of local press endorsement: as you can see from the photo above, there were so many online newspapers that helped their fellow athletes by writing heartfelt articles urging their readers to vote for them.

And the results were not slow in coming: for example, the current leader in the rankings (with more than 1,000 votes), Tony Cili (stage name of Antonio Ciliberto), a Calabrian kite champion, had the Crotonese press on his side. Here are who are, for now, the top five vote-getters in the first round of the Sailor of the Year: we remind you, as you can see in the infographic at the bottom of the article, that in this first round the 50 most voted candidates will pass. You can cast only one vote for the candidate you think is best, and we remind you that starting with the second round the votes will be reset to zero and start from scratch. By the way, if you haven’t voted yet, now is the time to do so!!!

ModelloCantiere CostruttoreLunghezza (M) (LOA)Anno di Progetto
GENESI 43Comar13.11990
GRAND SOLEIL 34Cantiere del Pardo10.181972
GRAND SOLEIL 343Cantiere del Pardo10.41985
GRAND SOLEIL 35Cantiere del Pardo11.11981
GRAND SOLEIL 39Cantiere del Pardo12.51983
GRAND SOLEIL 42Cantiere del Pardo12.651989
GRAND SOLEIL 50Cantiere del Pardo15.241993
GRAND SOLEIL 52Cantiere del Pardo16.31987

1. Tony Cili. Tony, class of 1988, a Calabrian from Crotone (anagrafe Antonio Ciliberto but to everyone he is Tony Cili), is a very strong Strapless kite athlete , but before that a true “waterman” capable of mastering at a high level all board sports from kitesurfing to surfing via windsurfing and sup. This year he won the National Championships in the Wave category (same result as in 2015) and at the world level he is always going strong

2. Giuseppe Fornich / Sagola Biotrading (GS37). Peppe Fornich, owner of the Grand Soleil 37 Sagola Biotrading, is always a protagonist of Italian and international offshore races. This year he won the Italian Offshore Championship in Class 3 Cruising and especially the Overall title of UVAI 2016 Owner of the Year.

3. Gaetano Mura. He made us dream, he failed to complete his nonstop solo round-the-world voyage on the Class 40 Italia, but he made ocean sailing popular here too, thrilling everyone from insiders to laymen. Gaetano will try again; he is as stubborn as a mule. And we will all cheer for him once again.

4. White Smooth (Carol Ketch 36). It would be wrong to name just one name, so we decided to nominate all the members of the Lisca Bianca project, through which the boat of the same name, with which in 1984 Mr. and Mrs. Sergio and Licia Albeggiani, set off on a three-year round-the-world voyage, came back to life after painstaking restoration.

5. Francis William Balzano. Young Francesco, on the strength of the Crotone Sailing Club, is the winner among the Cadets class of 2007 in the Primavela Optimist Cup, and is one of the most promising budding sailors, to be followed closely…


Each of the winners will be awarded a TAG Heuer Aquaracer Calibre 5 high-precision waterproof chronograph (pictured opposite), capable of withstanding depths of up to 300 meters.

For any information regarding the Sailor of the Year, please write to us at



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