The 2017 World Champions were joined by 400 special guests as VIPs from the boating industry, sport, media and business who attended the annual star-studded event sponsored by BUND Holding Group – China, H2O Racing and UNICEF.
The new Powerboat Champions received their trophies in recognition of their performance during the 2017 season in the presence of special guests Sergey Bubka, Senior Vice President of the IAAF and the Ukraine’s Olympic gold medalist and six-time Pole Vault World Champion, and three-time Olympic shooting champion Niccolò Campriani of Italy.
“The annual UIM Awards Giving Ceremony and Gala Dinner is undoubtedly one of the biggest appointment on the international powerboat season calendar,” said UIM President Dr Chiulli. “We believe in celebrating and honouring the achievements of our World Champions and we are proud to share this evening with the distinguished drivers.”
In addition to honouring the 2017 World Champions, the UIM also announced the winners of the Driver and Junior Driver of The Year Awards, Rasmus Haugasmägi and fellow Estonian Stefan Arand respectively.
The most honorable distinction, the UIM Stefano Casiraghi Memorial Trophy, was awarded to Nicolo di San Germano of H2O Racing in recognition of his outstanding and enduring commitment to the sport of powerboat racing. With more than 30 years dedicated to this sport, di San Germano is a familiar figure to everyone in powerboat racing having played a pioneering role in the organization, management and promotion of classes across the board including F1, Aquabike, Class One and the Nations Cup.
The UIM Safety Award was handed over to the Osprey Powerboat Rescue Team, the UK-based powerboat rescue experts who have more than 50 years’ experience as one of the world’s leading rescue teams for watersport activities. They provide a vital rescue service at UK and global powerboat race meetings, while its members also provide expert medical, scuba and boat driving training.
The UIM Gala also offered powerboat racing’s world governing body the platform to announce its new CSR initiative in cooperation with UNESCO. The development of a toolkit to help implement the Kazan Action Plan in sport with focus on the areas of youth, sustainability, inclusion and equality.