2014 Pittman Innovation Awards

Sail Magazine’s annual innovation awards with some interesting new products.

The BG-Zeus MFD can show laylines.

The BG-Zeus MFD can show laylines.

Sailing has always been a technology-driven activity, and the spirit of innovation that prompted the first Stone Age sailor to cast off and let the wind do the work remains as vibrant today as ever. Of course, many of today’s innovations harness the now commonplace “miracles” that are part and parcel of the modern era. Nonetheless, a surprising number are the product of good-old common sense, the kind of thing that prompt you to wonder, “Now why didn’t I think of that?”

Named after Freeman K. Pittman, SAIL’s long-time technical editor who died of Lou Gehrig’s disease in 1996, the Pittman Innovation awards recognize outstanding new products created by a sailing industry that remains forever fresh in its thinking. As in years past, our team of judges—executive editor Adam Cort, cruising editor Charles J. DoaneJay Paris is a veteran naval architect and SAIL‘s long-time technical editor, Ben Ellison is SAIL‘s electronics editor and owns the marine electronics web site, www.panbo.com and editor-at-large David Schmidt—roamed many boat shows, both in the United States and abroad, to uncover the best of the best in the realm of sailing gear. We think Freeman, once again, would have been impressed by what his fellow sailors have come up with.

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