Maroubra

A 17-year-old boy and his father rescued a drunk graffiti artist at the Maroubra's drain, last week, in New South Wales, Australia.

The 27-year-old man was spray-painting in the drain, when a furious storm hit the region.

His two friends - a 21-year-old woman and a 25-year-old man - were swept a mile to Lurline Bay and could not be saved. Fortunately, surfers father and son saw him waving for help and threw their surfboards to save his life.

The 17-year-old teenager said the lucky man was drunk when he finally got to him. Maroubra is one of the best places in the region for bodyboarding and 'sewersliding' in the drain.

Police has already stated that the survivor may be charged for entering enclosed lands. The local community is now discussing if the maps of underground tunnels and drains should or should not be public.

Mick Fanning

Mick Fanning, Stephanie Gilmore and Aaron Hadlow are nominated for World Action Sportsperson of the Year in the Laureus World Sports Awards.

The ninth annual Laureus World Sports Awards is to be held in St Petersburg, Russia, on February 18, 2008.

Laureus World Action Sportsperson of the Year:

Daniel Dhers (Venezuela) – at 21, took gold in BMX Park at the Summer X Games
Mick Fanning (Australia) – won the 2007 Surfing World Tour, taking three firsts during the year
Stephanie Gilmore (Australia) – at 19, first surfer to win a World Surfing Championship as a rookie
Aaron Hadlow (UK) – aged 19, won PKRA kiteboarding world tour for fourth straight time
Ryan Sheckler (US) – dominated Park category in skateboarding on Action Sports Tour
Shaun White (US) – won Winter and Summer X Games golds in snowboarding and skateboarding

Laureus is a universal movement that celebrates the power of sport to bring people together as a force for good.

Laureus is composed of three core elements - the Laureus World Sports Awards, the Laureus World Sports Academy and the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation - which collectively celebrate sporting excellence and harness the power of sport to promote social change.

Source: Laureus

Sally Fitzgibbons

ASP World Junior Champion Sally Fitzgibbons (Gerroa, NSW, AUS) proclaimed her arrival as Australia’s next biggest talent, taking out the 6-Star ASP World Qualifying Series Roxy Surf Festival, at Phillip Island, on Australia Day.

The 17-year-old ‘super-grom’ (young surfer) has not put a foot wrong this year. Winning three out of four events in January alone, Fitzgibbons capped it off with a sensational victory over Bruna Schmitz (BRA), simultaneously shooting to No. 1 on the WQS ratings.

“It’s been a great start to 2008,” Fitzgibbons conceded. “I won the World Junior Championships (in Sydney) which was a dream come true and to win a 6-Star WQS really caps it off.”

A top scorer from start to finish, Fitzgibbons appeared to have met her match in fellow 17-year-old Schmitz. The two surfers exchanged near perfect 9-point rides in the excellent 1-5 meter waves, before Fitzgibbons unleashed a sensational 9.75 to sail home with the win.

“Bruna surfed extremely well and I guess when you’re surfing against someone like that, one high score is never going to be enough,” Fitzgibbons explained. “I put my head down because I knew I had to get another one, and I’m just stoked to come through with the win.”

The result marked a career best for both surfers - Fitzgibbons taking home US$ 4 500 for first place, while Schmitz earned US$ 2 300 and has moved into No. 2 on the WQS ratings.

“I am really, really happy to get this far,” Schmitz beamed. “Sally is a very good competitor; she’s really strong and always gets the good waves. I still scored a 9.00 in the Final so it was close.”

The girlfriend of ASP World No. 8 Jeremy Flores (FRA), Schmitz credited her man for her outstanding achievement today.

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