BESTSELLER ANNOUNCES OLYMPIC HOPE 2020 NOMINEES
BESTSELLER has selected three nominees with immediate Olympic and Paralympic aspirations for its annual Olympic Hope award.
BESTSELLER’s Olympic Hope award will be presented for the 12th time in January, with the winner to be announced as part of the Danish sport awards SPORT 2020.
The nominees for BESTSELLER’s Olympic Hope 2020 are:
- Alexander Aslak Nørgaard (Swimming)
- Stephanie Grundsøe (Shooting)
- Tobias Thorning Jørgensen (Para-dressage)
There is a genuine chance that all three could already represent Denmark at Olympic and Paralympic level next year at the postponed Games in Tokyo. Alexander has already notched an Olympic qualifying time in the men’s 1500m freestyle, Tobias is reigning European champion and Stephanie is a two-time world championship silver medallist.
BESTSELLER’s Olympic Hope award is worth DKK 100,000, including a DKK 25,000 BESTSELLER clothing sponsorship. This financial support will help pave the way for the winning athlete to fulfil their Olympic dreams.
Each of the nominees has been recommended by their respective national sport association. A committee of BESTSELLER colleagues examined the field of suggested athletes and selected Alexander, Stephanie and Tobias as the official nominees. BESTSELLER is in the process of interviewing the talented trio and those interviews, as well as a poll of our colleagues, will help decide the winner.
Throughout our sponsorship of the Olympic Hope award, BESTSELLER has identified a total of five Olympic and Paralympic medallists: Sara Slott Petersen, Lotte Friis, Viktor Axelsen, Rikke Møller Pedersen and Daniel Wagner Jørgensen.
Last year, BESTSELLER’s Olympic Hope was awarded to the young talented swimmer Tobias Bjerg, who is expected to make his Olympic debut next year in Tokyo at the postponed Olympic Games.
Read more about Tobias and other former winners of the award here.
About the nominees
Alexander Aslak Nørgaard
Alexander has experienced a rapid rise from promising national swimming talent to genuine contender on the world stage over the past couple of years. In 2019, Alexander made a strong statement in one of the highest profile events in swimming – the men’s 1500m freestyle. At just 19 years of age, he became the first Dane to qualify for a World Championship final in the 1500m freestyle, subsequently breaking Denmark’s record in the final with an Olympic qualification time.
Now 20-years-old, Alexander has spent this year training hard in the absence of international competition – due to COVID-19 – and with the ongoing hope of making his Olympic Games debut at the postponed Tokyo 2020 event in Japan next year. He trains with Dansk Svømmeunion’s elite partner SIGMA Swim, which is based north of Copenhagen, and is known for his ability to be in ‘the zone’ during competitions. Alexander is also a willing ambassador for Dansk Svømmeunion’s ‘Respect for Water’ campaign, which promotes lifesaving and water safety.
Having won a gold medal in the 10m air rifle event at the 2018 Youth Olympic Games and two silver medals in team events at the World Championships that same year, Stephanie has proven she can compete with shooting’s international elite at both junior and senior level. She also won gold at the 2019 European Championships in the Junior Women’s 10m air rifle.
Stephanie’s commitment to her craft has seen her move to Norway as a 16-year-old to study at Norway’s leading sports high school, before heading to the United States last year to continue her sporting development at Texas Christian University – an elite sports university with a dedicated women’s shooting programme. Stephanie is a natural leader and motivator in a team environment. At the 2018 World Championships, she was the last shooter in Denmark’s team despite being the youngest and most inexperienced member, which required her to take the final decisive shots. The 20-year-old has also developed a reputation for instigating extra running or gym sessions for her team-mates.
Tobias Thorning Jørgensen
Denmark’s story within international para-dressage is long and impressive, and Tobias looks certain to add further chapters. The son of Danish Paralympian and former world champion Line Thorning Jørgensen, Tobias has already made his mark on the world stage. In 2019, Tobias won two individual gold medals at the European Championships, while he was also part of the Danish team that claimed a bronze medal. Ranked number three in the world, he is a strong candidate for a medal in Japan next year.
Tobias takes everything in his stride with maturity and composure. He suffers from muscular dystrophy, which results in very limited energy levels. Despite this, Tobias has shown time and again that he has an incredible will to compete. In February 2018, Tobias fell from a horse and broke seven bones in his body. Defying medical expectations, Tobias was already back riding again three months later.