Home-grown international sailing sensation Kirsten Neuschäfer has won one of the sport’s premier accolades – the female 2023 Rolex World Sailor of the Year award.

Neuschäfer was honoured at a glittering ceremony in  Málaga, Spain, on November 14, much to the delight of the local South African sailing  community.  

Commenting on the award in a video message Neuschäfer said: “It’s such an incredible honour to be a nominee among such amazing, acclaimed and iconic sailors, but to win this award, to be given this recognition by such an esteemed panel of judges and by the public means so, so much to me. Thank-you to everyone who has believed in me and cheered me on.”

Earlier this year Neuschäfer became the first woman to win the solo Golden Globe Race, which she did without any modern technology as per Race rules. Along the way she rescued of a fellow sailor in the South Atlantic Ocean. 

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