The ESPYs announced the 2017 nominees for all of their categories this week and there are some big name action sports stars on the list. The Best Male Action Sports Athlete and the Best Female Action Sports Athlete are the two big categories for athletes in our realm, with fan voting for each having begun. So you definitely want to vote for your favorite athletes now.
This year, the ESPY Awards celebrate their 25th year and are being hosted by two-time Super Bowl champion quarterback Peyton Manning. Taking place on July 12 at Microsoft Theater in Downtown Los Angeles, they will air on ABC at 8 p.m. EST.
So here’s a rundown of the two action sports categories and who is up for an ESPY Award.
In 2016, surfing prodigy John Florence finally put it all together for an entire year of competition and won his first world title. At only 24, Florence will most certainly be competing for world titles for the next decade and beyond.
At 21, Oystein Braaten took home X Games gold in Men’s Ski Slopestyle this past winter and put every other skier on the planet on notice that Braaten is the new sheriff in town.
Despite finishing second for the second year in a row in the Street League Super Crown, Nyjah Huston took another X Games Street gold in 2016, bringing his total X Games medal count to 13 (with 8 of those being golds).
Canada’s Mark McMorris has battled and overcome a slew of injuries the past couple years. But that hasn’t stopped him from being a force when he is able to put on a contest jersey. This past season, McMorris won three X Games medals, two International Ski Federation (FIS) crystal globes and took gold at Dew Tour and the Burton U.S. Open despite all the injuries.
The past year has been a huge one for skater Lacey Baker. She won her first Street League Super Crown title, she put out a legit part in “Quit Your Day Job”, was featured in Rolling Stone and put out another great part with Thrasher. At 24, she is the new face of women’s skateboarding.
Austrian Anna Gasser showed up in a big way this winter with three X Games medals, a victory at the Burton U.S. Open in Slopestyle and a victory in Big Air at the Snowboarding World Championships. If there’s a favorite for some gold medals in the 2018 Olympics, it’s Gasser.
At only 15, Kelly Sildaru is clearly the future of women’s freestyle skiing. In January of 2016, she became the youngest person to ever win a Winter X Games gold at 13. She is also the two-time defending Women’s Slopestyle champ at Dew Tour, won another gold at X Games in Slopestyle this winter, won two silvers at X Games this winter in Big Air and became the first woman to ever land a Switch 1260 Mute and a 1440 during a competition. Oh, and she’s from Estonia.
After finishing in 4th twice and 2nd another two times, Australian Tyler Wright finally became the first woman since 2006 not named Stephanie Gilmore or Carissa Moore to win the Women’s Championship Tour. Breaking a barrier she wasn’t thought capable, it has completely shifted the power struggle in women’s surfing.
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