Who will be the Sailor of the Year 2023?

sailor of the year
Caterina Banti, 35 from Rome, is, along with helmsman Ruggero Tita and coach Ganga Bruni, the reigning Sailor of the Year. Tita-Banti won the award in 2022 after winning Olympic gold in Japan in the Nacra 17 mixed catamaran.

We have already received messages and emails. For the docks, the question that “crawls” is just one: “Who will be the Sailor of the Year 2023?”

Sailor of the Year 2023. Lots of news

You will find out soon, we are working on the 32nd edition of the most prestigious award in Italian sailing: this year, we are already announcing, it will be an unforgettable edition with great news.

Sailor of the Year

We are selecting candidates for you to vote for as you do every year online. It is not yet time for “spoilers,” but we can anticipate that among the categories in the competition will be the Digital Sailor, or dedicated to youtubers and content creators who use sailing as a medium and do it a great service by opening it up to a wider and more diverse audience.

At “work in progress,” we enjoyed scrolling through the roll of Sailor of the Year: a true snapshot of recent Italian sailing, where a lot has happened. Here’s what we found out.

The club of “multi-revealists of the Year”

In addition to the (for now) unattainable Alessandra Sensini, a four-time winner (as many as the number of Olympic medals she has won), there are only four “Multiple Winners of the Year.” Vasco Vascotto (2000 e 2006), Ambrose Beccaria (2018 and 2019…by the way certainly among the candidates in 2023 as well for the splendid second place at Route du Rhum), Max Sirena (2013 and 2021) and Peter Sibello (2010 e 2021).

Alessandra Sensini has won Sailor of the Year four times

It’s never too late

Who was, we wondered, the competion to win with the most years of experience behind him? Patrizio Bertelli, “Mr.” Luna Rossa, who won the award in 2021 at age 75 after leading the Italian syndicate once again to the America’s Cup final.

Patrizio Bertelli “had to wait” 75 years before he was elected Sailor of the Year…

The other “old sea wolves”: Vincenzo Onorato, patron of Mascalzone Latino, who was 50 years old when he won in 2007; solo sailor Andrea Mura; and Dario Noseda, also 50 in 2018, when he won the prize after a daring Atlantic crossing in Star.

Zandoná the younger

The Sailor of the Year is an award you win after proving so much. Rare, then, are the “enfant prodigies”-in recent years, in fact, we have established the Young award dedicated to the very young.

Gabrio Zandonà (here at the helm of his 470) was the youngest winner of the Sailor of the Year

For the record, the youngest person to win it was Gabrio Zandonà, Roman Olympic 470 coxswain who was “only” 27 years old when he won it in 2004.

Great sailors away from the sea

Is it necessary to be born on the sea or on a lake to become a great sailor? Absolutely not.

sailor of the year 2023
GIovanni Soldini (child here) was born far from the sea. Yet.

As many as 16 Sailors of the Year were born far from the sea. Clamorous are the cases of Giovanni Soldini and Ambrogio Beccaria from Milan, the many Romans(Zandonà, Miceli, Banti), Nannini from Turin and Bissaro from Verona, just to name a few. The region that has won Velista of the Year the most times is Tuscany, with 7 titles (Sensini four times, Bertelli, Pedote, Chieffi), followed by Lombardy with 6 (Zuccoli, Beccaria twice, Soldini, Noseda, Favini) and Lazio and Campania with 4.

Eugene Ruocco

All the winners of the Sailor of the Year and their stories


Caterina Banti, Ruggero Tita, Gabriele Bruni

2021 Checco Bruni, Max Sirena, Pietro Sibello, Patrizio Bertelli
Ambrose Beccaria

2019 Ambrose Beccaria
2018 Dario Noseda
2017 Gaetano Mura
2016 Giancarlo Pedote
2015 Vittorio Bissaro and Silvia Sicouri
2014 Andrea Mura
2013 Max Sirena
2012 Marco Nannini
2011 Alexander Di Benedetto
Peter Sibello

2009 Alessandra Sensini
2008 Matthew Miceli
2007 Vincenzo Onorato
2006 Vasco Vascotto
2005 Alessandra Sensini
2004 Gabrio Zandoná
2003 Flavio Favini
2002 Lorenzo Bressani
2001 Alessandra Sensini
2000 Vasco Vascotto
1999 Paul Cian
1998 Tommaso Chieffi
1997 Alessandra Sensini
1996 Francis De Angelis
1995 John Soldini
1994 Roberto Ferrarese
1993 Paul Cayard
1991/92 George Zuccoli





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