FREYA HOFFMEISTER (Germany) - Nominee for 'Sportswoman of the Year'
- Born 10.05.1964, Sports: Touring and Expedition, Record Circumnavigations of Islands and Continents by Sea Kayak, Marathon Ocean-Racing, Surfski Racing, Greenland Style-Kayak Rolling, represents Germany
- September 2011 - (approx.) May 2015: First ever circumnavigation of the whole South American continent by sea kayak (K1), solo and unsupported. Follow her journey here on her website blog
Freya Hoffmeister, 50, also known as "Freya Shakti", "Goddess of Love to the Seas" or "Fearless", is a highly-skilled open ocean-paddler who has undertaken the two world's greatest timed sea kayaking continental circumnavigations, plus has numerous islands records to her name.
- Iceland (2007): K1, with Greg Stamer, ca. 1.300 km, fastest circumnavigation ever in 33 days (less than 10 persons only),averaging 65 km per paddling day, unsupported paddling. The "K2 (mountain)" of Sea Kayaking!
- New Zealand South (2007): K1, solo and unsupported,ca. 2700 km, 70 days, fastest solo-circumnavigation, first woman, third person in 30 years. The "Mount Everst of Sea Kayaking!"
- Australia (2009): K1, solo and unsupported, 13.790 km, 322 days, second person to do so, 28 days faster than the first paddler Paul Caffyn 27 years ago. She has included a 7-nights/ 8-days 567 km crossing of the Gulf of Carpentaria with sleeping in her kayak, three +180 km overnight paddles along unaccessible cliffs with no landings, numerous other overnight paddles, was fightinghuge waves and massive surf on landings, paddled with the dangerous species of salt water crocodiles, venemous sea snakes and jellyfish, survived a shark attack with bite and uncountable shark bumps in her kayak. She dealt with the ever burning sun, loneliness and remoteness with very few food and water supplies in many areas. "She Can Do It!" was her motto for this trip - and she did it!. This trip compares probably to having climbed *all 8000+ mountains* in the world in one year.
- South America (Sep 2011 - May 2015): K1, about 30.000 km and 30 months of solo paddling in four legs. She started this historical "First" in Buenos Aires (Argentine), then rounded the infamous Cape Horn with getting in 60 knots winds and having to do an emergency crash landing on a remote island. The West coast performed with 4 m high swell waves, massive surf and very few safe landing possibilities. The crossing of the Panama Canal put her to the hot Caribbean where she had to fight headwinds and counter currents until Brazil, heat rashes, mosquitoes and the endless shallows and swamps of the Amazon area. She survived an unintentional night side surf on the "Pororoca" tidal wave in the Amazon, which lasted about 20 min and accelerated her up to 30 km/h,all in darkness. She managed numerous massive surf landings, reefs, and whatever else may be on her way until she will finish this epic journey successfully probably in May 2015. "THINK BIGGER!" is her motto for this trip. Freya is convinced no one ever will any time soon do this trip after her...
An all-round paddling athlete, Freya enjoys also surf ski racing, open water marathon and Greenland style rolling. With regards to ocean racing, she won the Arctic Sea Kayak marathon in Norway in 2004, came second in the 2006 300 km circumnavigation of the island of Fyn (Denmark) and she completed the then and now still woman's record of the Isle of Man (UK) in 14.07 hours.
Competitively, Freya also won the overall woman's category at the 2006 Greenland National Championships, taking 8 golds in Greenland-kayak rolling and racing - never had an overseas competitor been so successful.Freya's achievements in endurance open ocean paddling and numerous other sports, below, are nothing short of super-human.
Activities and achievements off the water:
- 10 years of competitive gymnastics
- 5 years of competitive Body-Building
- 6th in the Miss Germany beauty contest
- 10 years of skydiving (1500 jumps, first female tandem pilot with 500 jumps with a passenger), has skydived over North pole and in numerous record-formations
- 28-year business entrepreneur: seven ice cream cafés, a salad bistro, a large Christmas shop
- She gave birth to her son Helge in Jan 1996
This is a 2014 archived nominee. For the 2015 nominees click on the button below.