Cruising World/Sailing World Boat of the Year Awards

For Immediate Release
Contact: Dean Turcol
Communications Director

Cruising World/Sailing World Boat of the Year Awards
More Significant for 20th Anniversary

Newport, RI — The annual Cruising World /Sailing World Boat of the Year Awards have always brought prestige to the winners, but this year’s contest will undergo changes making the awards more significant than ever. The two magazines have raised the already lofty criteria to showcase the best new sailboats introduced to the marketplace.

Advances include more judges involved in the voting, extra testing time on the boats and the addition of a nomination round. Builders must enter their boats by June 27. The magazines will announce their boat nominations during the U.S. Sailboat Show in Annapolis, Maryland, with the Boat of the Year Awards slated for presentation in November. This year marks the 20th anniversary of the awards from Sailing World, while it has been 10 years since Cruising World added its honors. Each magazine will present a Boat of the Year award, already considered the highest honor in the industry, in their respective fields in addition to awards in other categories.

“The new nomination round will give the boats a greater profile and credit for moving beyond the entry phase,” says Sally Helme, Publisher of Cruising World and Sailing World. “It also allows judges more time to inspect the boats both dockside and under way while enhancing consumer awareness and interest in the boats and the awards.” Those boats that are entered but not nominated for the final awards will still be considered for standard boat reviews in Cruising World and Sailing World.

Any model introduced to the North American market between the 2002 and 2003 Annapolis Boat Shows is eligible to enter. The judging panel will scrutinize the boats at the Newport Boat Show, the Sail Expo at Liberty Landing and the opening days of the Annapolis show. The nominations will be announced by category at a special ceremony at Annapolis. Winning boats from that round will then have onboard judging during the show and sail tests the following week.

One major change is the number of judges who will vote. For Cruising World’s Boat of the Year contest, the jury will expand from three members to five with a goal of establishing a well-rounded panel that understands the diverse new-boat market. The panel will consist of at least one sailor with outstanding technical and long-term cruising credentials, a naval architect or boatbuilder with an extensive design background, an industry representative with firsthand customer service or consumer-related experience, a live-aboard sailor who understands a boat’s domestic criteria and a multihull expert well-versed in sails, rigging and systems. Sailing World’s panel of judges will remain at three.

The judges will consider design, construction, seaworthiness, performance, purpose of the boat, fitness for the use intended and cost. Two independent judging panels of five will evaluate and test boats for the respective magazines. The Cruising World awards focus on production boats laid out and equipped for coastal and offshore cruising and voyaging. Judges on the Sailing World panel will concentrate on boats designed and built with racing in mind. Builders can enter boats in both contests.

Cruising World, published monthly by World Publications, is considered the bible for blue-water sailors. Whether their long-range sailing plans center around a Caribbean sabbatical or an open-ended voyage around the world, Cruising World nurtures cruising sailors’ dreams with practical how-to information and stirring real-life adventure articles.

Sailing World is published 10 times a year by World Publications and is the official magazine of US Sailing, the national governing body of the sport of sailing. Advice on the latest boat models and equipment, as well as racing tips, tactics and techniques, make it a must-read for sailors who race to win.