Croatian Olympic Committee's "Fair play" award for 2008 presented to the Olympic sailing boat team – class 49er consisting of Petar Cupać, Pavle Kostov and the coach Ivan Bulaja
Thanks to Pavle Kostov, Petar Cupać and their coach Ivan Bulaja, the Danish team Warrer/Ibsen has won the Olympic gold medal in the class 49er at the XXIX. Olympic Games 'Beijing 2008'.
In accordance with the Olympic rules format on sailing, the regatta ends with a final race for the medals, in which ten best teams (selected based on so far achieved results) participate. Even though the Croatian team Kostov/Cupać didn't manage to quality for that race, their boat, however, managed to sail on August 17th into that final race of the Olympic regatta. The conditions were very hard – strong wind with quite unpleasant waves. The leading team, the Danes Warer/Ibsen, have pretty much secured the gold medal even before the final race. However, 15odd minutes before the start of the race, the mast of the Danish team's boat broke. At that moment, it seemed that the competition was over for them. There was very little time left until the start, and their boat was in no condition for the race. However, the Croatian team, one of the nine teams that did not qualify for the final race, learned about their problem, acted instantly to their request, and lent their boat to the Danish team. The Danes managed to return to the final race and started the race around four minutes after the other finalists, with only a few seconds left within the starting deadline. In the end, they became Olympic champions.
All the participants of the Olympic regatta in Beijing agreed that the Croatian team has shown a true Olympic spirit and solidarity. The World Olympic Movement responded to their fair-play gesture by presenting them the highest award of the International Fair Play Committee – the Pierre de Coubertin award – World Fair Play Trophy in the category "Act of Fair Play". The award was presented to them on January 26, 2009 in Istanbul.