Writer: Alyce Burnett - The Olympic Games is the biggest sporting event on the planet, where the best athletes from all over the world fight for glory. To recognise the achievements of our paddlesport athletes at this pinnacle, the World Paddle Awards will introduce four new award categories to its list, which will be presented once every four years.
In addition to the eight existing awards, the four new awards will be in the categories of:
- Best Male Canoe Sprint 2016
- Best Female Canoe Sprint 2016
- Best Male Canoe Slalom 2016
- Best Female Canoe Slalom 2016
These awards will only be open to paddlers who win a Gold Medal at the concerned Olympic Games, which [for Rio 2016] will result in four boats for slalom (3 male and 1 female) and twelve boats for sprint (8 male and 4 female) being nominated. This would therefore mean that the female athlete who wins Gold in the K1 Slalom automatically becomes the ‘Best Female Canoe Slalom 2016.’
For the remaining Olympic Gold Medalists, the award winners will be selected through consideration of their results from the previous Olympic Games. If none of the athletes medalled at this previous event their historic results at the World Championships in the three years prior will be considered.
Commencing at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, the first set of awards will be presented at the 2017 awards ceremony in February 2017 in Portugal, Montebelo. These four awards will be presented alongside the exisiting categories of: Sportsman, Sportswoman, Sports Junior, Foundation Award, Industry Professional, Lifetime Achievement, Media Professional and the Academy Award.
The addition of these four awards is something the World Paddle Awards is very proud of. Good luck to all athletes in their preparation for the 2016 Rio Olympic Games and beyond.