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Events

Sep 29, 2016

Lorenz Holder Announced Overall Winner of Red Bull Illume 2016

The winners of the world’s greatest action and adventure sports photography contest have been unveiled at a spectacular Winner Award Ceremony in Chicago, USA.

WRITTEN BY

Alyssa Fowler

The best action and adventure sports photographers from around the globe were celebrated in Chicago on September 28 as the Red Bull Illume Image Quest 2016 Overall Winner, 11 Category Winners and Top 55 finalist images were unveiled.

Photographer: Daniel Vojtech Red Bull Illume 2016 Category: Sequence Athletes: Miroslav Krejci, Jan Rudzinskyj, Stanislav Cejka and Jan Tvrdik Location: Jaromer, Czech Republic

Next to winning the Masterpiece by Yodobashi and Playground categories, German photographer Lorenz Holder also took the top spot for the second time running. His atmospheric shot of athlete Senad Grosic riding his BMX across a bridge in Germany received the most votes from the panel of 53 respected judges. In addition to the Overall Title, Lorenz’s winning image also took home the coveted Athletes’ Choice Award.

Mr Holder, who works as a staff photographer for Nitro Sports, explained how he got the shot to The Outdoor Journal, “I discovered this lake in Germany by accident and decided that this was the perfect spot for a shooting with an athlete. The bridge mirrors in the water and this is the perfect circle. The day of the shooting we had to clear the lake of all autumn leaves before we have been able to do the shooting with Senard Grosic. Today I am just feeling overwhelmed!”

Photographer: Denis Klero Red Bull Illume 2016 Category: Close Up Athlete: Rustam Gelmanov Location: Fontainebleau, France

The Outdoor Journal Founder and Editor-in-Chief Apoorva Prasad who was also a Red Bull Illume 2016 judge said, “Congratulations to Lorenz for the win, and to everyone who participated! It was overwhelming to receive so many incredible entries, depicting the spirit of adventure in such naturally beautiful environments. I have always maintained that adventure and action sports photography represents a kind of pinnacle of human spirit and achievement. Most photos did just that. It was an honour to play a part in this.”

Lorenz Holder's Bio
I grew up in Munich, close to the Bavarian mountains, and it is those mountains that have always played a major role in my life. I was a semi-professional snowboarder back in the day, until I injured myself badly and I pretty much had to quit snowboarding for a whole season in 2003. In that time I discovered the pleasure of photography. In my photos, I like to show the viewers the beauty of the environment where athletes perform. I’m a huge fan of landscape and architectural photography and I try to combine those genres with action sport. I think a great location is one of the key elements for a great action picture. Right now I work as a staff photographer for Nitro Snowboards.

The Winner Award Ceremony was held at the Art Institute of Chicago and hosted by television personality Tina Dixon and snowboarder Louie Vito. It also celebrated the 10-year anniversary of the prestigious contest with many guests from the photography industry and sports scene, such as BMX athlete Senad Grosic, freeskier Johnny Collinson and Red Bull Illume founder Ulrich Grill.

Red Bull Illume Image Quest 2016, Category Winner: Wings Photographer Credit: Micky Wiswedel / Red Bull Illume Athlete: Jamie Smith Location: Cape Town, South Africa This image is free for editorial purposes (“Communication Use”) only when used in relation to Red Bull Illume. Please note that the above Photographer Credit always needs to be applied.

The tour will stay in Chicago until October 9 where visitors can enjoy the world’s best action and adventure sports images for free. To showcase the amazing imagery in a unique way, the exhibition will only be open after the sun goes down, between the hours of 6:30pm and 10:30pm. After Chicago, the tour will head to Toronto, Canada, Yonkers, NY and San Francisco, CA. Further tour stops will be announced on redbullillume.com shortly.

The Category Winners

Close Up: Denis Klero, Russia with his black and white shot of climber Rustam Gelmanov showing his chalk-covered hands in Fontainebleu, France.

Energy: Luke Shadbolt, Australia for his black and white image showing the power of nature. Surfer Renan Faccini is set against a huge swell in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil.

Enhance: Dean Treml, New Zealand and his image of cliff diver Jonathan Paredes jumping from the 28 meter platform on the roof of the Copenhagen Opera House during the Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series, 2013.

Lifestyle: Jody MacDonald, Canada with her mesmerizing image of her brother Ken MacDonald sitting atop a train during their adventure through the Sahara Desert.

Masterpiece by Yodobashi: Lorenz Holder, Germany showing Senad Grosic ride his bike over a bridge in an autumnal Gablenz, Germany.

New Creativity: Ale Di Lullo, Italy for his fun shot of Aaron Chase riding his mountain bike on the windshield of a NYC cab.

Playground: Lorenz Holder, Germany showing BMXer Senad Grosic ride a rusted viewing platform in Senftenberg, Germany.

Sequence by Sony: Daniel Vojtêch, Czech Republic with his shot of Flying Bulls pilots Miroslav Krejci, Jan Rudzinskyi, Stanislav Cejka and Jan Tvrdic in Jaromêř, Czech Republic.

Spirit: Dean Treml, New Zealand for his image showing kayaker Josh Neilson being supported by fellow paddlers Barnaby Prees, Sam Sutton, Tim Pickering, Ben Brown, Jamie Sutton and Jaren Seiler after a bad landing off Matze’s Drop, Storulfossen, Norway.

Wings: Micky Wiswedel, South Africa with his shot of climber Jamie Smith mid-fall as he attempts a new route on Table Mountain, Cape Town.

New for 2016 was the Mobile Category. It was won by Vegard Aasen, Norway for his black and white mountaineering image taken in Hakuba, Japan.

As the Overall Winner, Lorenz Holder received a €40.000 voucher from Yodobashi, a Sony iLCE-A7RII camera with a full set of lenses, a Broncolor Sirus Kit and a G- Technology G-Drive ev RaW SSD.

Feature Image: The Overall Winning shot of athlete Senad Grosic riding his BMX across a bridge in Germany (Image © Lorenz Holder/ Red Bull Illume)

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Events

Jul 10, 2018

The 2018 Whitewater Awards: Nouria Newman and Benny Marr take the spoils.

The Whitewater Awards is a gathering of the world’s best kayakers to show off the biggest and best things that have happened in the sport over the past year.

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WRITTEN BY

Brooke Hess

 To be considered for an award, athletes, photographers, and filmmakers submit media taken over the past year that they believe showcases the best progression in the sport.  

There are sixteen different categories for submission, including separate male and female categories within the “Best of” kayaking categories. Categories include Photographer of the Year, Film of the Year, Expedition of the Year, Best Trick, Best Line, River Stewardship, Grom of the Year, Rider of the Year, along with several others.  Awards are decided upon by a voting process done by the Association of Whitewater Professionals.

This year’s Whitewater Awards was held in the Egyptian Theater in downtown Boise, Idaho. It was hosted on June 14th, the same weekend as the North Fork Championships, which takes place on the North Fork of the Payette River just outside of Boise.  The North Fork Championship is regarded as one of the hardest kayaking races in the world.

The race takes place on Jacob’s Ladder rapid, which is a rapid so difficult and consequential that most kayakers feel accomplished simply by surviving the rapid, much less racing the rapid. Nouria Newman, a 3-time NFC racer and winner of this year’s Whitewater Awards Female Rider of the Year describes it well,

“The NFC is the hardest race in whitewater kayaking. [Jacob’s Ladder] is a scary, consequential rapid. Running it is challenging, and it only gets harder to race it and make the gates.”

In order to minimize the risk involved in the race, event organizers have developed a strict qualification process for racers. 30 racers will qualify to race Jacob’s Ladder. Ten of them are pre-qualified from placing top ten at the event the year before. Those ten then read numerous athlete applications and vote on the next ten racers who will join them.  The last ten racers are decided through a qualification race on S-Turn rapid, another one of the North Fork’s infamous class V rapids.

Every year on this same weekend in June, kayakers, photographers, and filmmakers from around the world flock to Idaho to celebrate quality whitewater, progression of the sport, and the community that surrounds it. Both the North Fork Championship and the Whitewater Awards had great turnouts of athletes and spectators this year.

John Webster

The finalists of each category in the Whitewater Awards were presented in film format at the Egyptian Theater for the entire audience to view, with the winner being announced live. Winners were presented with an award and expected to give a short speech at the event. The big winners of the night were Nouria Newman and Benny Marr, who were awarded with Line of the Year and Rider of the Year in the female and male categories. Nouria says that voting for the “best” in each category is a challenging process, “…voting is always tricky, (look at both French and U.S. presidents, not too sure if they are really the best available option). And it is also very hard to compare lines and rapids. What’s bigger? What’s harder? I got voted Best Line of the Year with a good line down Parque Jurassic, a long technical rapid, but Rata’s line down Graceland, which is a huge slide, was equally as good, if not better.”

No matter how tricky the voting process can be, Nouria agrees that the Whitewater Awards plays a large role in the progression of the sport, “I think it’s super cool to see what people can do in their kayak, how they push the limit of the sport and how they open new possibilities.”

For more information about the Whitewater Awards, you can visit whitewaterawards.com, you can also follow them on Facebook and on Instagram.

You can follow Nouria on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

You can follow Benny on Facebook and Instagram.

Cover photo courtesy of Ari Walker

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