The Mander Yachting Trust “Canterbury Yachtie of the Year” awards were held recently at Naval Point Club Lyttelton. This annual event gives Canterbury clubs and class associations the opportunity to recognise local sailors and volunteers in a number of categories, both on and off the water. As in previous years this fairly informal event proved to be a good preseason opportunity for members of the Canterbury sailing community to get together and enjoy some light refreshments and catch up with old and new friends.


The event is organised by The Mander Yachting Trust, a youth yachting trust that, as the name would suggest, was founded my the late Peter Mander, one of Canterbury’s sailing heroes, who along with Jack Cropp won gold in the Sharpie class at the 1956 Melbourne Olympics. Peter’s vision was that the trust provides ongoing financial support to Canterbury’s youth sailors by way of grants to assist them in events of an educational nature. Something The Mander Trust does to this day.


Clubs and class associations can choose to nominate sailors and volunteers in one of a number of categories ranging from Youth Sailor to Off the Water Administrator with winner of each category in turn being eligible for the supreme award of “Canterbury Yachtie of the Year”. As always the “Youth Sailor of the Year” category was hotly contested and no wonder with so many of Canterbury’s youngsters doing themselves proud on both the national and international stage.


Some of the more notable nominees included Charteris Bay Yacht Clubs pairing of Jayvee Buchanan and Mathew Morrison, 420 National Champions and New Zealand Representatives at the ISAF youth worlds. Charlotte Corston, also form Charteris Bay Yacht Club, who recently finished seventh at the Laser Radial Youth Worlds, topping of a season that included representing Canterbury at the Starling match racing and finishing as second girl at the nationals in the same class. Naval Point Club Lyttelton’s Xanthe Bowater who represented New Zealand at the World Techno regatta and keel boat sailor Anthony Leighs who’s recently launched his new Elliott 35 Super Sport “Crusader” and is taking on Auckland’s best.


Also new this year was the best photograph category, with the winner decided by people’s choice on the evening. There was huge interest in this category with many photos being submitted. The winning photo was aptly named “Titanic” with the photographer being Thysje Arthur from the Pigeon Bay Boating Club.


Whilst the peoples choice best photograph category was not eligible for the supreme award, all other categories were. The supreme award of “Canterbury Yachtie of the Year” was taken out this year by Charlotte Corston of the Charteris Bay Yacht Club. Joan Mander presented Charlotte with the “Canterbury Yachtie of the Year” trophy.