Silver medal winners from Tokyo ahead of Boris Herrmann and Katrina Westphal
The sailors of the year 2021 are Tina Lutz and Susann Beucke. The two 49erFX sailors won the vote of the magazine Segler-Zeitung and the online platform segelreporter.com. The Olympic silver medalists from Tokyo thus prevailed against strong competition. Vendée Globe participant Boris Herrmann came in second, followed by Katrina Westphal in third place.
The silver medal at the Olympic Games put the crown on the duo's long journey. Tina Lutz, Germany's first Opti World Champion (2005), and Susann Beucke met 15 years ago and decided to sail together from then on. Almost straight away, they sailed to the Junior European Championship title in the 420 in 2007. When they switched to the 470, they aimed for the Olympics. But the road was rocky. In 2011, they failed in the internal German elimination to Katrin Kadelbach/Friederike Belcher. When they switched to the 49erFX class, they became world-class skiff sailors in a strong German group. But in 2016, they were again denied Olympic participation in German competition. Victoria Jurczok/Anika Lorenz grabbed the ticket. In the Olympic cycle for Japan, Lutz/Beucke managed to win the European Championship gold twice (2017 and 2020). And with their victory to Kiel Week 2020, the final Olympic qualifier, they left no doubt that they were ready for the Games. Before Enoshima, the southern-northern German combo sailed a consistent series, but for the Medal Race anything was still possible between first and sixth place. It became place five in the final race and thus the Olympic silver for the two 30-year-olds.
This outstanding leadership has now been recognized with the Sailor of the Year award. The result has come from community voting on segelreporter.com and the decision of an expert jury consisting of Hermann Hell (publisher of Segler-Zeitung), Nikolas Woeckner (editor-in-chief of Segler-Zeitung), Carsten Kemmling (editor-in-chief of Segelreporter.com), Mona Küppers (president of the German Sailing Association) and Petros Michelidakis (director of boot Düsseldorf).
"I am incredibly happy about the award "Sailor of the Year" by the Segler-Zeitung and segelreporter.com, as we have practically come full circle. Tina and I met in 2006 at a Kieler Woche press conference of the Segler-Zeitung. Hermann Hell, the former editor-in-chief, brought us together. Now, 15 years later we receive this great award. Especially considering the other top sailing performances last year, I feel especially honored," Susann Beucke said about the honor. "For me it is a great honor to become sailor of the year. A great reward - thank you very much!", Tina Lutz said about the award.
After Max Billerbeck (Contender World Champion) in 2019 and Philipp Buhl (Laser World Champion) in 2020, the award was presented for the third time this year.
As in previous years, the top three finishers in the voting received valuable prizes from Sailor-of-the-Year partners Wempe, Garmin and Steiner. In addition, the award ceremony was supported by the insurance experts from Pantaenius, Bootspunkt, the specialist water sports retailer with retail stores as well as online trading, and by the world's largest watersports exhibition, boot Düsseldorf.
The final result:
1. Tina Lutz / Susann Beucke 2. Boris Herrmann 3. Katrina Westphal 4. Paul Kohlhoff / Alica Stuhlemmer 5. Melwin Fink 6. Michael Berghorn 7. Erik Heil / Thomas Plößel 8. Robert Stanjek 9. Markus Wieser 10. Magnus Simon 11. Heiko Kröger 12. Oliver Schmidt-Rybandt