Class: Laser Radial
US Sailing Team AlphaGraphics: 2004 (Europe Dinghy), 2005-2008 (Laser Radial)
Member of: North Cape YC
Education: Perrysburg High School, Old Dominion University (graduated 2005)
Birthdate: Oct. 17, 1982
Birthplace: Doncaster, England
Hometown: Plantation, Fla.
Occupation: Full-time sailor
Significant sailing achievements: 2007 U.S. Olympic Committee (USOC) SportsWoman of the Year/Sailing; Ranked No. 1 in the world in ISAF Laser Radial Rankings (2007), Quantum Sails College Sailor of the Year (2005)
Biography: Every Olympic athlete is determined, but Laser Radial sailor Anna Tunnicliffe has strengthened her will to win like a well-toned muscle. As a senior at Old Dominion University, she came off the water after a first day of racing at the ICSA Singlehanded Nationals disappointed with her finishes. She informed her coach she was going to win every race the next day-and she did.
“I was very focused that morning, and the breeze was up-which helped my case,” says Tunnicliffe. “Once I won the first three, I felt very comfortable and had good starts, good speed, and got seven firsts to open a nice lead.”
While Tunicliffe was honing her talent with an eye on China, so too was another American sailor of equal determination and will. Both Tunnicliffe and Paige Railey proved to be powerhouse talents on a global scale, and the U.S. Olympic Team Trials was a showdown between these two competitors. Tunnicliffe won the opening race of the Trials and kept a leading points edge throughout the regatta, with Railey finishing second.
“Knowing that the other is sailing hard at the same time somewhere else, it makes you push yourself that little bit harder,” says Tunnicliffe of the ongoing contest between her and Railey. “That rivalry that formed over the years has definitely pushed me to where I am today.”
2008 2nd US SAILING’s Rolex Miami OCR/Miami, Fla., 9th Sail Melbourne International Regatta/Melbourne, Australia
2007 1st The Good Luck Beijing – 2007 Qingdao International Regatta/Qingdao, China, 1st Laser Radial Midwinters East/Clearwater Beach, Fla., 5th ISAF Sailing World Championships/Cascais, Portugal