Six of the world´s best Para athletes have been nominated for the 2018 Laureus World Sports Awards in the World Sportsperson of the Year with a Disability category, following a survey of the world’s sports media.
Their names were announced on 16 January, with the winners set to be revealed at the Laureus Awards Ceremony in Monaco on 27 February.
The nominees are:
Marcel Hug (SUI), athletics: The wheelchair racer won world titles over 800m, 1,500m and 5,000m in the highly competitive T54 class at London 2017. He also won World Marathon Majors races in Tokyo, Boston, Berlin, Chicago, and New York.
Yui Kamiji (JPN), wheelchair tennis: In 2017 the 23-year-old reclaimed the number one spot she first held in May 2014. In a year to remember, she claimed 14 singles titles out of 18 including three Grand Slams – Australian, French and US Opens. In doubles she is ranked world number two having won eight titles and two of the four Grand Slam double events.
Oksana Masters (USA), Nordic skiing: Having competed in rowing at London 2012 and cycling at Rio 2016, Masters focused on Nordic skiing in 2017, winning her first four world titles in the sport. The 28-year-old won medals in five of her six women’s sitting events, capturing four golds and one bronze. Masters closed the season at the World Cup final with two gold medals to secure the No.1 world ranking in cross-country and No.3 in biathlon.
Bibian Mentel-Spee (NED), snowboard: After successfully leading the campaign to have snowboard included in Sochi 2014, Mentel-Spee has continued to be at the forefront of the sport. The Paralympic champion won two world titles in 2017 despite having missed most of 2016 due to cancer treatment.
Jezte Plat (NED), triathlon and cycling: At the UCI Para Cycling Road World Championships in South Africa, Plat won gold in the individual road race and time trial events. Twelve days later he took gold at the ITU World Triathlon Grand Final in his native Netherlands. The Berlin marathon was his next port of call, nine days later, topping the podium in the hand-cycle division. In mid-October he won the Para athlete division at the 2017 Ironman World Championships in Hawaii.
Markus Rehm (GER), athletics: Rehm once again showed why he is considered one of the world’s best Para athletes with victory in the long jump T44 at the London 2017 World Para Athletics Championships. His leap of 8.00m was more than one metre clear of the silver medallist. He also took gold in the 4x100m T42-46. In a project with Deutsche Bahn, he also supports children with an impairment through joint training sessions and practice as a part of the German “Youngsters Training For The Paralympics” programme.
More information on the 2018 Laureus World Sports Awards, including the full list of Nominees can be found at the Laureus website.