The announcement of the nominees for the Laureus World Sports Awards 2022 sees two of paratriathlon’s most recognised and successful athletes featured.
The Laureus Sportsperson of the Year with a Disability features Jetze Plat (NED) and Susana Rodriguez (ESP) as two of the six nominees.
Wheelchair athlete Jetze Plat is, perhaps, the most dominant paratriathlete in the history of the sport.
Paralympic Games gold medallist in both Rio and Tokyo, his World Triathlon results history shows 28 starts and 26 wins. He’s not been beaten since 2015, and in 2021 added both the European and World Championship titles in his PTWC category, to World Triathlon Para Series wins in Yokohama and Leeds.
Alongside those events, he also raced and won – of course – the Arena Games paratriathlon events in London and Rotterdam.
Plat is also the best in the world in para-cycling, and despite a hectic schedule in Tokyo, he topped the podium in both time trial and road race for the H4 category, to depart Japan with three Paralympic Games gold medals.
This is Jetze’s third Laureus nomination in this category, having also been recognised in 2018 and 2020.
2021 was also an incredible year for visually impaired athlete, Susana Rodriguez.
Gold medallist in the PTVI category in Tokyo, like Plat she also added World Championship victory in Abu Dhabi and topped the podium in Leeds too.
Rodriguez also races across multiple disciplines, and she arrived for the World Paratriathlon Series event in Leeds just days after winning silver at the European Para Athletics Championships in Bydgoszcz, Poland.
Rodriguez also gained international attention in 2021 outside of the sport, when she was featured on the Cover of TIME magazine, who featured her work during the COVID-19 pandemic as a doctor.
The full list of nominations in the Laureus Sportsperson of the Year with a Disability category is:
- Diede De Groot (The Netherlands) – Wheelchair Tennis
- Jetze Plat (The Netherlands) – Para Triathlon
- Marcel Hug (Switzerland) – Wheelchair Athletics
- Sara Storey (United Kingdom) – Para Cycling
- Shingo Kuniego (Japan) – Wheelchair Tennis
- Susana Rodriguez (Spain) – Para Triathlon