The award - also called "the Oscars of sport" - has been won by several sports greats. Usain Bolt, Roger Federer, Serena Williams, Tiger Woods and Lionel Messi have all won the award. Formula 1 drivers Michael Schumacher, Sebastian Vettel and Lewis Hamilton have also won the award in the past. Last year, Verstappen became the fourth F1 driver to receive the trophy.
Verstappen faces stiff competition: besides the Dutchman, footballers Kylian Mbappé and Lionel Messi are also nominated, as well as tennis player Rafael Nadal, basketball player Stephen Curry and pole vaulter Mondo Duplantis.
'My thanks go to the team'
"It is an honour to be nominated," Verstappen responded on his own website. "Winning last year was an incredible moment for me: it is such a prestigious accolade, and it means even more when you’re up against the world’s best athletes. To be shortlisted again is an achievement in itself, so thank you to my team Oracle Red Bull Racing for the support throughout our Championship winning year."
It is not only Verstappen himself who is nominated: his team Red Bull Racing has also been nominated in the 'Team of the Year' category. Red Bull Racing competes in that category against the Argentinian football team, the English women's football team, the French rugby team, the basketball team The Golden State Warriors, and Real Madrid.