With regret the YJA MS Amlin Gala Awards dinner 2020 has been cancelled alongside a difficult decision taken not to present the Yachting Journalists’ Association’s Yachtsman of the Year, Young Sailor of the Year or Young Blogger of the Year Awards in September.
With consideration to the fact that Coronavirus is still spreading around communities, as well as the current social distancing guidelines in force, the committee have decided that hosting a dinner with several hundred prominent figures from the leisure marine industry is not possible. If an event were to have been held, it would not have been the relaxed, jovial and celebratory event intended.
In what should have been a fantastic year for sailing, with the inclusion of the Tokyo Olympics, Coronavirus has created an unprecedented situation. The postponement and cancellation of so many sailing events has made the 2020 YJA MS Amlin Awards unfeasible. 2021 looks set to be an action packed year with many events already in the calendar and even more rescheduled from 2020 so the competition for the 2021 Awards will be more intense than ever.
Paul Knox-Johnston, Business Development Manager – MS Amlin Boat Insurance said, “It is disappointing that the awards have had to be cancelled in 2020, but the safety of the YJA members and guests has to come first. Looking at the positives however, despite the curtailment of international sailing events, it has been great to see a resurgence of grass roots sailing and increased participation in wider water sports with the easing of lockdown and a population keen to get out of the house to breathe fresh air and get fit. Hopefully positives can come from this challenging year and we will see future Yachtsmen and women of the Year awarded who took up sailing in this post lockdown period.”
Cliff Webb, Chairman of the YJA said, “After the fabulous success of the YJA MS Amlin Gala Dinner last year, it is of course a huge disappointment not to be able to proceed this year, as we expected to build on this further, using the lessons learnt from this ‘new edition’ of these famous awards. Bringing together the ‘great and the good’ of the industry and the top stars from around the world of boating, was without any doubt, a glittering night enjoyed by all, and with MS Amlin‘s support, we were looking forward to setting a new standard, but that will just have to wait until next year now given the circumstances.”
2020 has been a difficult year for so many around the world and our thoughts are with all of those who have suffered due to Coronavirus. Both the MS Amlin Boat Insurance team and the YJA committee would like to thank everyone working tirelessly to care and protect those who are vulnerable and also those working on cures and vaccines for Coronavirus. We look forward to the YJA MS Amlin Awards returning in 2021, but stay tuned for a major announcement early next week about a new and exciting initiative from MS Amlin Boat Insurance and the YJA.