Rolex Yachtsman and Yachtswoman of the Year
The sailing accomplishments of Terry Hutchinson, Annapolis, Md., and Stephanie Roble, East Troy, Wis., were honored when they were chosen as US Sailing’s 2014 Yachtsman and Yachtswoman of the Year in an awards ceremony held at the New York Yacht Club’s Model Room in February. The honorees were formally announced in January after being chosen for their outstanding on-water sailing accomplishments in 2014.
The event was emceed by Gary Jobson and included multimedia retrospectives of each winner’s sailing life followed by presentations of specially engraved stainless steel and platinum Rolex Oyster Perpetual Yacht-Masters — symbolic of achievement in excellence — by Rolex Watch U.S.A. President and CEO Stewart Wicht.
Roble, 25, a first-time winner of the Rolex award, secured the 2014 Etchells World Championship as crew and the U.S. Women’s Match Racing Championship as skipper while working her way to the top of the latter discipline’s U.S. rankings.
“I feel so lucky to be a part of a lot of teams; teamwork is what I’m in love with right now,” said Roble, whose current goal is to win the Women’s Match Racing World Championship in July with crew Janel Zarkowsky and Maggie Shea. “You need your team to be successful; this award is for all of them.
“I’m beyond the moon excited right now. This is such a special award, and to see all the sailors who’ve won this before and to join this list means so much to me. It’s extremely motivating.”
Yachtsman Terry Hutchinson, 46, also won this honor in 2008, taking overall and class victories with Hap Fauth aboard Bella Mente in the Caribbean 600. He recognized several sailing mentors in the audience, among them his father, Gary Jobson, Doug DeVos, coach James Lyne, Alex Roepers and Jim Richardson. He credited them for helping him develop the instinct for doing the right things at the right time.
As the current Rolex Farr 40 and TP52 World Champion, Hutchinson said winning the Rolex Yachtsman of the Year Award this second time around was “different because of how it all happened.”
“It was quite a hard thing emotionally not going all the way through with the last America’s Cup,” said Hutchinson, who “bounced back” to have an exceptional 2014 racing season on the water. “In some ways, it’s not how you get knocked down but how you get back up that’s going to be the measure. It’s a testament to the owners and their faith and trust in the process that we apply to win races.”