Delphine Besson: inspired by surfing

Delphine Besson is a Swiss surfer. She's special. Not because she comes from a landlocked country, but because she has a rare, incurable disease.

When you go to bed, and you don't know how you'll feel the next day, you must value life. That is the story of Delphine, born in 1983 in Sri Lanka, and adopted by Swiss citizens when she was only 45 days old.

Besson learned to surf when she was able to travel on her own. Rapidly, the sport of riding waves became a passion. Unfortunately, in June 2014, her body started shaking all the time. Doctors diagnosed her with a rare neurologic disease.


Kelly Slater: 11 world titles on his back | Photo: WSL/Kelly Cestari

The World Surf League (WSL) surfers will feature their favorite numbers on their backs. Original idea? Not even close.

Kelly Slater picked number 11 (for the world titles he has won); Gabriel Medina chose 10 (probably the most iconic number in football history), and John John Florence opted for number 12 (ready to beat Slater). The criteria can be date of birth, favorite digit, lucky number, or any other numeric superstition.

The first time numbers were used in football (soccer) was in the 1920s, in England. Back then, numbers were assigned by field location: for example, goalkeeper, full back, center forward, etc.


Zane Schweitzer: power and versatility | Photo: Tony Roberts

Zane Schweitzer is the 2015 Master of the Ocean. The waterman secured the overall title for the second consecutive year, in the Dominican Republic.

The wave rider from Maui, Hawaii, won two divisions (surfing and stand up paddleboarding), finished third in windsurfing and 11th in kiteboarding. The Master of the Ocean committee crowned the winner by tallying up the results from each of the four water sports.

"To me this is probably my all time favorite event because it encompasses the talent on the water of every wave riding vehicle. To be a true waterman you know that no matter what the conditions are, you will always have something to do, there's a right time for everything," expressed Schweitzer.