Irina Shayk beats 17 Models for Sports Illustrated 2011 Swimsuit Issue Cover

February 15, 2011

The Russians are coming! Irina Shayk won the cover of Sports Illustrated 2011 swimsuit issue. 17 models competed for the honor of SI’s swimsuit issue cover this year. The announcement that Irina had won was made on David Letterman’s show last night. She beat out the likes of Brooklyn Decker, last’s year cover-girl, Bar Refaeli who appeared on the 2009 cover and Julie Henderson. The very first Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue appeared in 1964 as a response to a sales slump. Babette March graced that edition, was one of the top models of the time, partying her way through New York City with Mick Jagger and Andy Warhol. But much has changed over the decades as this year’s edition of the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue features some models in just body paint.

irina shayk 2011 sports illustrated swimsuit issue
Irina Shayk is the cover model for the 2011 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue. Image Credit: HRC/WENN.

Irina Shayk is no stranger to the limelight, nor to Sports Illustrated. She appeared in the layout for the 2007 edition. Her ‘big break’ came in 2004 when she won the ‘supermodel’ title at a beauty pageant in Chelyabinsk, Russia. Since 2007, Irina has been the primary model for the lingerie brand Intimissini, being named their ‘ambassador’ last year. She has also promoted Guess and Armani lines. Last year, Miss Shayk was named ‘Best International Model of 2010′ by Glamour Spain.

Life has not always been a beach to Irina Shayk. Born and raised in Yemanzhelinsk, her father, a coal miner, died when she was 14. But success has not gone to her head as she does charity work for Pogomi, which provides hospital care for children in Russia. Irina and her sister even assisted a new maternity and children’s wards at her hometown hospital. In her spare time, she is dating Cristiano Ronaldo, a soccer player who also shows off his abs regularly for Armani, during which Irina met him last year.

But for the Sports Illustrated 2011 swimsuit issue, Irina Shayk is the cover girl. The announcement was made of ‘Late Nite with David Letterman’ yesterday. Irina beat out 17 models including Brooklyn Decker and Julie Henderson. The SI swimsuit editions began in 1964 in response to a sales slump and has become an annual tradition, setting trends for the year and making new stars.

2011 sports illustrated swimsuit issueirina shayk SI swimsuit coveririna shayk swimsuit issue

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3 Responses to “Irina Shayk beats 17 Models for Sports Illustrated 2011 Swimsuit Issue Cover”

  1. 1
    Sandy Says:

    She’s a nice tall drink of water!

  2. 2
    Stacy Says:

    Her and Cristiano sure make one hot couple!

  3. 3
    Rachelle Says:

    She is beautiful