His Majesty, Felipe VI, the King of Spain, presented the Camino Real Award of the Instituto Franklin-UAH to tennis player, Rafael Nadal
Don Felipe VI presented the Camino Real Award of the Instituto Franklin-UAH to the tennis player Rafael Nadal in a ceremony held at the Paraninfo of the Universidad de Alcalá. The ceremony was attended by the Minister of Culture and Sports, the U.S. Ambassador to Spain and Andorra, and the Mayor of the City of Alcalá de Henares.
The Selection Committee decided to grant the award to Rafael Nadal for being one of the most outstanding Spanish figures in the North American sports scene and a reference to Spanish values; having zealously preserved the Spanish cultural legacy and always remaining faithful to his origins. The sculpture of the bell that is given to the award winners was made by the Navarre sculptor, Carlos Ciriza.
With this award, Instituto Franklin-UAH recognizes the work of those Spaniards who have spread a positive image of Spain in the United States. The award, which refers to the routes (Camino Real de Tierra Adentro and Camino Real de California) used by the Spaniards to reach the northern territories that are now part of the United States from Mexico, is also a recognition of the importance that Spain had, and still has, in North America. In previous editions, winners included the actor Antonio Banderas, the basketball player Pau Gasol, the cardiologist Valentín Fuster and the tenor Plácido Domingo.
Rafael Nadal Parera is a Spanish professional athlete, considered the best tennis player in history on clay, and one of the best of all time. He is the male tennis player with the most Grand Slam singles titles to date, starting from 22 years of age to the present date. He also won the Australian Open twice, the Roland Garros Tournament fourteen times, the Wimbledon Championship twice, and the U.S. Open four times. He is also the second tennis player in history who has won the most Masters 1000 singles titles. Nadal has also represented Spain at the international level, such as the Davis Cup and the Olympic Games, becoming the second player in history to win the gold medal in both singles and doubles in Rio 2016 games.
This season Nadal has won the Australian Open and Roland Garros.
CAMINO REAL AWARD
The Camino Real Award was introduced in 2012, coinciding with the 25th anniversary of the establishment of the Institute (1987), to recognize the professional work of Spaniards who prominently and exemplary project and enhance the positive image of Spain in the United States.
The Instituto Franklin de la Universidad de Alcalá is the only University Institute for Research on North America in Spain. Founded in 1987, its activity focuses on postgraduate research and education related to American Studies and Bilingual Education through research projects, scholarships and grants, and its dissemination in own publications and scientific events.
The mission of the Instituto Franklin-UAH is to serve as a platform for communication, cooperation and union between Spain and North America, in order to promote mutual understanding.
You can watch again the ceremony here.