Many of the top nominees are past or present J/Sailors from the top J one-design classes (J/22, J/24, J/70, J/80). Of the ten contenders for Yachtsman of the Year, seven (70.0%!) have extensive sailing experience on J’s, including Etchells World Champion Bill Hardesty (San Diego, Calif.); J/70 World Champion Tim Healy (Jamestown, R.I.); Rolex Farr 40 World Champion Terry Hutchinson (Annapolis, Md.); J/80 World Champion Brian Keane (Weston, Mass.); Extreme Sailing Series Champion Morgan Larson (Santa Cruz, Calif.); ISAF Sailing World Cup 470 Men’s Bronze Medalist Stu McNay (Providence, R.I.); and J/24 World Champion Will Welles (Portsmouth, R.I.).
Of the seven contenders for Yachtswoman of the Year, five (71.0%!) have spent considerable time sailing J one-designs; including J/70 Worlds Corinthian Champion Heather Gregg-Earl (Boston, Mass.); ISAF Sailing World Cup 470 Women’s Bronze Medalist Anne Haeger (Lake Forest, Ill.); Etchells skipper Shannon Bush (Refugio, Texas); ICSA Women’s National Champion Deirdre Lambert (Cumberland, Maine); and US Women’s Match Racing Champion Stephanie Roble (East Troy, Wisc.).