FISA has just announced the six finalists for the 2012 Thomas Keller Medal, the most distinguished award in the sport of rowing. The finalists are: Constanta Burcica (Romania), Vaclav Chalupa (Czech Republic), Caroline & Georgina Evers-Swindell (New Zealand; the twins are treated as one entity – see photograph above), Manuela Lutze (Germany), Vasileios Polymeros (Greece), and Bryan Volpenhein (United States). Read more about the finalists here.
This year’s Thomas Keller Medal will be presented on 26 May 2012 at the 2012 Samsung World Rowing Cup in Lucerne, Switzerland. It will be presented by Dominik Keller, the son of FISA’s former president Thomas Keller, and Denis Oswald, president of FISA.
About the Thomas Keller Medal
The winner of the Thomas Keller Medal receives an 18-carat gold medal. The Thomas Keller Medal is the highest distinction in the sport of rowing. It is awarded to recognise an exceptional international rowing career as well as exemplary sportsmanship and legendary aspect. The award was named after the late President of FISA, Thomas Keller “Thomi”, who was born in 1924 and elected President of FISA in 1958, at the age of 34. He was then the youngest-ever president of an international sports federation. Following the 1988 Olympics, Thomi Keller spontaneously awarded the FISA Medal of Honour to Peter-Michael Kolbe and Pertti Karppinen to commemorate one of the greatest rivalries in the history of the sport and recognising their exceptional talent and sportsmanship. This shaped the idea of the Thomas Keller Medal which was initiated by the Keller family following Thomi’s passing in 1989 and was first awarded to the great Norwegian oarsman Alf Hansen in 1990. Each year, the winner is carefully selected by the Thomas Keller Medal committee, after a broad international nomination process, to ensure that the true values in which Thomi so strongly believed are represented in this award.
To view the full list of winners to date, please click here.
(Photographs from FISA’s worldrowing.com)