23 June 2020
FISA, World Rowing, announced yesterday that the organisation will not present any awards for the year 2020. Instead, the public is asked to nominate individuals who have ‘acted with courage, helped others or created new ideas on how to handle the difficult situation caused by the Covid-19 pandemic’. They will be celebrated by FISA later this year.
With few international regattas this year, FISA has reviewed the situation with its awards and the FISA Executive Committee has come to the conclusion that it would be ‘inappropriate’ to hand out awards. Instead, FISA, writes on its website, November will be a month of celebrations of ‘an individual or individuals who have acted with courage, helped others or created new ideas on how to handle the difficult situation caused by the Covid-19 pandemic’. The organisation will ask the public to nominate these individuals, who will be featured on FISA’s communication channels.
‘This is a most unusual year for sport with so many events being cancelled or postponed,’ says Jean-Christophe Rolland, FISA president. ‘We wanted to show that through the year there was still much happening in the rowing community, whether it was rowers innovatively adapting their training to be indoors or rowers helping on the front lines, especially in essential services.’
Normally, the FISA awards, including the Thomas Keller Medal, Filippi Spirit Award, Distinguished Services Medal and Sustainability Award, are presented at the annual Coaches Conference in November. With no awards ceremony this year, it will be a celebration of the sport of rowing.