Welcoming Steph Gilmore
Surfing superstar, Steph Gilmore, joins Audi as a global ambassador and experiences the new wave of electric mobility first hand.
4 October, 2018
Australian surfing great, Stephanie Gilmore, is happiest when she’s immersed in the natural world – literally. In the water, she is in a class of her own, the six-time world surfing champion having completely dominated the world of women’s professional surfing since exploding onto the scene in 2007 and taking her first world title that very year. She is a rare talent who makes it all look so easy out on the water, which to her is very much a passion as opposed to a sport – what she calls ‘her first true love’, and something she feels truly consumed by.
Clearly that love is reciprocated, her success in the surf is unprecedented. After winning her first world title in that rookie year of 2007, she went on to take a further three consecutive world titles – a feat unmatched in men’s or women’s world surfing. She narrowly missed adding a seventh world title in 2017 to equal the world record holder, Layne Beachley, and there is no telling just what she can achieve with her natural drive to succeed and years of competition still ahead of her. “It’s all about the feeling. That deep satisfaction of having that dream and embracing the journey to get there. It’s a really special feeling that keeps driving me to do what I love,” Gilmore says of her approach to competition.
In addition to her six ASP World Titles (as we publish Gilmore is on track to win her seventh), Steph has amassed more than 30 elite tour wins globally and been recognised as the ESPN ESPY Best Female Action Sports Athlete in 2011 and 2013 as well as being the recipient of the prestigious Laureus World Sports Award in 2010.
She is a rare talent who makes it all look so easy out on the water, which to her is very much a passion as opposed to a sport
As a general rule, water and electricity don’t mix, but in this case it is the perfect partnership
Her style has been described as amongst the best in surfing – male or female. A combination of aggression and an unmatched level of precision born of years spent vying for the best waves from northern New South Wales, right up the east coast of Australia to Coolangatta and then on to the rest of the world.
But while her passion for the water is well documented, Gilmore is equally passionate about the environment and the responsibility we all share to protect and preserve it for those who come after us. She is acutely aware of the effect that each of us has on the environment and the importance of making every effort to lessen our impact as we go through our lives.
As a general rule, water and electricity don’t mix, but in this case it is the perfect partnership. With Audi starting an exciting new era in the brand’s already rich history with the launch of the Audi e-tron, the first fully electric model is the start of an ‘e-offensive’ that will see an extensive range of new all-electric models and plug-in hybrids added to the brand’s range in the coming years. For Gilmore, partnering with a brand committed to developing a whole new, sustainable approach to mobility is perfectly aligned with her approach to life and philosophy for a sustainable future.
As a global ambassador for Audi and in particular e-tron, Gilmore is excited with what the future has in store – particularly now that the e-tron is a series production reality.
The two came together recently for Steph’s first official engagement with Audi as a global ambassador, the event, the eagerly anticipated world premiere of the Audi e-tron in San Francisco, the brand’s first all-electric, series production model.
“It’s really exciting to be working with Audi and to be here at the very start of the e-tron journey,” the 30-year-old Australian said at the launch of the Audi e-tron.
“Sustainability is something that’s close to my heart and it’s something that should be close to everyone’s heart. It’s an important move for the future of the world. For Audi to take be a leader in this direction has the ability to create an impact for the future and I am honoured to be involved in sharing this story, helping consumer make new choices, from the start.”
The city on the bay, San Francisco, is a particular favourite for Stephanie Gilmore, it’s position as a technology and environmental pioneer leader and its proximity to Muir Woods, the ancient Red Wood forrest literally just across the Golden Gate Bridge, is a living example of what Gilmore is so dedicated to protecting.
“I just feel at home when I’m in nature, and I think most humans should feel that way and that’s why we need to look after it … after all, life’s not a dress rehearsal,” she says.
“As a surfer, I really feel that it’s my responsibility to educate people and help people understand the effect we’re having on the ocean and the earth as a whole.”
“Sustainability is something that’s close to my heart and it’s something that should be close to everyone’s heart"
“I feel I spend so much time on the road and my carbon footprint is so huge, that these are the steps I need to take"
Although her trip to San Francisco was brief, fitting in between commitments on the World Surf League calendar, it afforded Gilmore the chance to not only witness the unveiling of the Audi e-tron, but to get a sense of other areas where Audi is leading the way in e-mobility. Catching up with Allan McNish, motorsport great and now principal of Audi’s championship winning Formula E team, afforded another insight into e-mobility at the very cutting edge.
And while San Francisco might not be considered one of the world’s great surf breaks, that didn’t stop Stephanie Gilmore from surfing right under the famed Golden Gate Bridge while she was there.
“There’s a really good left-hander,” she says of the spot right under one of the bridge pylons, and while it might not feature on the World Surf League calendar, that didn’t stop Gilmore from suiting up and surfing under the famous bridge.
“I feel I spend so much time on the road and my carbon footprint is so huge, that these are the steps I need to take to show my own commitment to sustainability,” says Gilmore of her new journey with Audi and e-tron.
“It’s really special to know that humans are now committed to making things that compliment nature and that we’re going back to protecting all of this. And that’s the most important thing.”
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