Updated: Feb 23
Laureus Award Nominee and Surfing World Champ Italo Ferreira about to sign a new endorsement contract
Sebastian Steudtner and Maya Gabeira make a clear statement on the WSL’s safety plan for the Big Wave Contests
Update on Portugals Alex Botelho’s health condition
Leonardo Fioravanti and Italo Ferreira on the Olympics and the Surf Industries sponsorship dilemma
"Laureus is a global organisation that celebrates sporting excellence and uses the power of sport to transform the lives of children and young people.“ - Laureus
The Laureus World Sports Awards is an annual award ceremony honoring individual athletes, sport teams and sport achievements from around the world. Actor Hugh Grant led through the annual sports gala, while British singer and songwriter Liam Payne, performed on stage in front of an audience, consistent of some of the best Sportsmen and -women on the planet.
With three Surfers on the nomination list of Laureus - Surfing World Champs Carissa Moore and Italo Ferreira as well as Bethany Hamilton - WMNSurfmag decided to travel to Berlin and have a closer look at the event also known as ‚the Oscars of Sport‘.
Along with other aspiring Athletes and Sporting Legends such as Dirk Nowitzki, Lewis Hamilton and Leonel Messi - Riss, Italo and Bethany were nominated in the following Categories:
Laureus Action Sports Person of the year: Rayssa Leal (Skateboarding), Chloe Kim (Snowboarding), Mark Mc Morris (Snowboarding), Carissa Moore (Surfing), Nyjah Huston (Skateboarding), Italo Ferreira (Surfing).
Snowboarder Chloe Kim was awarded Action Sports Person of the year.
Bethany Hamilton was nominated for Laureus Sporting Moment of the year, for ‚riding the wave’ and made it to round two but finally lost to Indian Cricketer Sachin Tendulkar for the moment after India’s triumph in the ICC Cricket World Cup 2011, where Sachin Tendulkar was hoisted on the shoulders of his team-mates and paraded around the Wankhede Stadium.
Two days, full of excitement about who was going to actually be there, to not only to join the ceremony, shine at the gala and eventually win an award but also to support the 'Sports for good‘ foundation' and represent what, Laureus stands for today and has stood for the previous 20 years:
Sport Unites Us.
When Nelson Mandela spoke at the Laureus World Sports Awards in 2000, he said:
“Sport has the power to change the world. It has the power to inspire. It has the power to unite people in a way that little else does. It speaks to youth in a language they understand. Sport can create hope where once there was only despair. It is more powerful than governments in breaking down racial barriers.”
In Sports, we care for each other, we help and stand up for each other, we worry about our fellow ones, we encourage each other. We learn to overcome fears, to believe in ourselves and to trust others, to have faith and never give up! We are all individuals but we operate as a team.
German Big Wave Surfer Sebastian Steudtner and world record holder of the largest wave ever surfed by a woman, Maya Gabeira have shown us their team spirit in the 'Surf talk‘ arranged by the Laureus Sport Awards.
Both made a clear statement about the World Surf League’s safety as well as the Leagues respect for their participating Athletes. Sebastian Steudtner was referring to Alex Botelho, his fellow competitor in the WSL’s Nazarè tow in challenge, who nearly lost his life only about a week ago.
Photo: Lisa Weixelbaum
We asked Maya Gabeira, who had a similar accident a few years ago at the exact same spot, to enlighten us about the difficulties of making a come back after such a life threatening accident. She told us how Alex Botelho accident has recently affected her surfing too. Watch here!
With five months to go until Tokyo 2020, Skateboard-Talent Sky Brown is set to become Britain's youngest ever Olympian at the summer games. WMNSurfmag got to interview the 11-year old who, to us, was one of the most inspiring personalities on the red carpet in Berlin!
Photo: Lisa Weixelbaum
Some may say it will be hard for Sky Brown to set further goals in her future if she has already reached 'everything’ she possibly could have wished for at such a young age. For Sky though, it seems like her name is the limit and her plans are to not only enter the Olympics with a different discipline in the near future, but to also encourage young females around the world to not only ‚let the boys have all the fun!‘.
Current World Champion Italo Ferreira revealed to us, that he is about to sign a new endorsement contract with a non-surf-related brand. As the Sponsorship crisis in the Surfing Industry has affected some of the best Surfers on and off the Championship Tour, we asked CT Surfer Leonardo Fioravanti how the Olympics will change the situation and he shared his thoughts! Coming soon!
Photo: Lisa Weixelbaum
Laureus is a global organization that celebrates the excellence of sports and uses the power of sport to transform the lives of children and young people.
As a Surfing publication in print, whose content is fully financed and funded by talented writers, graphic designers, photographers, Surfers and brands who believe in what we do - representing women in surfing - we could not agree more.
Sport not only unites us, it bonds us.
Full list of award-winning Athletes:
Laureus World Sportsman of the Year: Lewis Hamilton und Lionel Messi Laureus World Sportswoman of the Year: Simone Biles Laureus World Team of the Year: South Africa Men’s Rugby Team
Laureus World Breakthrough of the Year: Egan Bernal Laureus World Comeback of the Year: Sophia Flörsch Laureus World Sportsperson of the Year with a Disability: Oksana Masters Laureus World Action Sportsperson of the Year: Chloe Kim Laureus Best Sporting Moment: ‘Carried on the shoulders of a nation’ - Sachin Tendulkar Laureus Lifetime Achievement Award: Dirk Nowitzki Laureus Academy Exceptional Achievement Award: Spanish Basketball Federation
Laureus Sport for Good Award: South Bronx United