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HRH The Princess Royal to present Yachtmaster of the Year at RIN Annual Meeting

by Becky Gilbert-Wood 1 Jul 2019 08:38 PDT 16 July 2019
Hannah Stodel - HRH - RYA Yachtmaster of the Year 2017 © Emily Whiting

Selected from more than 3,000 accomplished and deserving exam candidates, the 2018 RYA Yachtmaster™ of the Year is soon to be revealed.

The prestigious award - which has historically been presented at the London Boat Show - will this year be awarded on Tuesday 16 July 2019, by Her Royal Highness The Princess Royal, President of the RYA, at the Royal Institute of Navigation (RIN) AGM and Annual Meeting in London.

The esteemed accolade, is awarded each year to an individual who has shown outstanding skills and knowledge as a skipper, and successfully demonstrated their expertise and experience during their RYA Yachtmaster™ certificate of competence examination.

Director of Training and Qualifications for the RYA, Richard Falk, said: "The RYA Yachtmaster™ is undoubtedly the world's leading yachting qualification. Not only does the RYA Yachtmaster™ of the Year have to be a first class sailor and navigator, they also have to demonstrate that with an examiner at their shoulder watching their every move.

"To be the best candidate amongst more than 3,000 people who undertake the certificate of competence exam each year is an outstanding achievement."

Director of the RIN, John Pottle, commented: "The RIN is delighted to host the RYA Yachtmaster™ of the Year Award at our Annual Meeting this year. It feels very appropriate to share this event with the RYA, an organisation with whom we have much common ground and whose association and cooperation we value. We extend a warm welcome to the RYA for what is set to be an enjoyable and sociable day for all."

Previous winners include; four time Paralympian, Hannah Stodel (2017); recreational sailor, Angus Watson (2015); and the youngest winner to date, 18-year-old, George Gillingham (2014).

Now a deckhand working on superyachts, George reflected: "Passing my RYA Yachtmaster™ exam gave me the best start in my career, and winning the award was a great experience that I'll never forget."

The RYA Yachtmaster™ qualification is highly respected across the globe and a recognised entry ticket to the maritime industry. More than 3,000 people take the exam each year, with the majority of them then going on to work commercially in the small commercial vessel sector.

Nominations for the RYA Yachtmaster™ of the Year Award are put forward by the RYA's worldwide team of RYA Yachtmaster™ Examiners. In recognition of the achievement, winners receive the RYA Yachtmaster™ Trophy, donated by the Royal Institute of Navigation.

To start your journey, or to learn more about RYA training courses and qualifications, visit To find out more about the RYA Yachtmaster™ qualification, visit

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