Sarah Douglas named Rolex Sailor of the Year

September 2, 2021

Sarah Douglas named Rolex Sailor of the Year

She earned an historic 6th-place result in ILCA 6 (Laser Radial) at Tokyo 2020

Kingston, September 2, 2021 – Sarah Douglas was named today Sail Canada’s Rolex Sailor of the Year for 2020-2021.

Following her 6th-place finish at Tokyo 2020, Sarah Douglas received this award for the second time in a row at Canada’s Celebration of Sailing held by Sail Canada and the Royal Canadian Yacht Club today in Toronto. The event, attended by approximately 100 guests including members of the Tokyo 2020 Canadian Olympic Sailing Team and past Olympians, celebrates performances and experiences of Canada’s high-performance sailors of the past, present and future.

Sarah Douglas achieved Canada’s best individual performance in women’s sailing in Olympic history in Tokyo by finishing in 6th position overall in Laser Radial. She also became the first Canadian to take part in the Medal Race of the Laser Radial class since this event was introduced to the Olympic Games program in 2008 in Beijing. The previous best Canadian result in Laser Radial was 16th position in Rio in 2016. In 2020, she also took 6th spot at the Laser Radial European Championships.

“I am incredibly honoured to win the Rolex Sailor of the Year award for a second time,” said Sarah Douglas. “Training through the pandemic was very challenging and I can’t thank my support team enough, as well as the entire community, for being there for me for the last five years and especially through the last 18 months; this award wouldn’t have been possible without them.”

“Thank you to Rolex for continuing to support our sport in Canada. I hope that I inspired the next generation to chase after their dreams and that we will all continue to work together to support those dreams.”

Sail Canada’s Rolex Sailor of the Year award has been given out annually since 1986 to individual(s) who have provided global recognition to Canadian sailing and Sail Canada, and who are renowned leaders that have attained high levels of excellence with significant results and accomplishments in world events or activities. Along with recognition for exemplary sportsmanship, they have held the respect of their fellow sailors. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, this year award is based on performances achieved between December 2, 2019 and August 6, 2021.

Amongst previous winners of Sail Canada’s Rolex Sailor of the Year award, Canada’s Olympic and Paralympic medalists Evert Bastet (2007), Terry McLaughlin (2001 and 2013), John McRoberts and Jackie Gay (2016), as well as Paul Tingley (2008) are all part of the prestigious list of winners, as is Ross MacDonald, who won it three times (1990, 1992 with Eric Jespersen and 2004 with Mike Wolfs).

More information is available on Sail Canada website at: https://www.sailing.ca/rolex-sailor-of-the-year-award/.

About Sail Canada
Established in 1931, Sail Canada is the national governing body for the sport of sailing in the country. Sail Canada is a leading international sailing nation, proud of its world class athletes, lifelong participants and inclusive culture. The organization and its members are committed to excellence by developing and training its leaders, athletes, sailors, instructors, coaches and officials. With the valued support from our partners, the Provincial Sailing Associations and our member clubs, schools, organizations and stakeholders, sailing is promoted in all its forms. By setting standards and delivering programs from home pond to podium for Canadians of all ages and abilities, from dinghies to keelboats, cruising to navigation, windsurfing to powerboating and accessible sailing, Sail Canada sets sail for all, sail to win and sail for life.

A sport in the Olympic program since the first Games in 1896, except in 1904, the pursuit of success in these Games is what fuels the focus of Sail Canada as Canadian athletes have so far achieved nine Olympic and five Paralympic medals.


  • Rolex
  • Helly Hansen
  • Gallagher Skippers' Plan
  • BMO Sail Canada MasterCard
  • Government of Canada