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Ahye, Walcott bag First Citizens awards
Track and Field athletes, Michelle-Lee Ahye and Keshorn Walcott copped the 2016 First Citizens Sports Foundation “Sportwoman of the Year” and “Sportsman of the Year” awards at the annual national awards function which took place at Queen’s Hall, St Ann’s, on Friday night.
The Carenage-born Ahye who will celebrate her 25th birthday on April 10, was a clear favourite among the 30 women athletes that were nominated by the respective national federations.
Just like last year when shot putter Cleopatra Borel and quartermiler Machel Cedenio won to give the National Association for Athletic Administrators (NAAA), a clean sweep, a similar development tok place again with Ahye and Walcott.
During the 2016 season, Ahye came into her own as the top women’s sprinter in T&T when she reached three finals at the Rio de Janeiro Olympic Games in Brazil.
In Brazil, she placed sixth in the women’s 100m sprint final, and also had a similar placing in the 200m women’s final before she helped her team-mates to the women’s 4x100 metres relay final–just the second appearance ever for T&T in this race, along with 1984 – and an eventual fifth-place standing.
Apart from featuring in three finals during the IAAF Diamond League circuit—in Rome, Zurich and Birmingham, Ahye also twice established national records and personal-bests 7.09 seconds clockings in both the first round and semifinals of the 60 metres competition at the IAAF World Indoor Championships in Portland, Oregon, where she eventually finished fourth in the final in 7.11 seconds.
The Toco-born Walcott, the 2012 award winner was T&T’s lone medal winner at the Rio Olympic Games when he got bronze in the men’s javelin final with a throw of 85.38 metres behind Germany’s Thomas Rohler (90.30m) and Julius Yego of Kenya (88.24), adding to his gold medal won at the 2012 London Olympic Games.
The 23-year old Walcott had earlier at the same Rio Games executed his best throw of the season of 88.68m during the first round of the competition.
During the season, Walcott also enjoyed another bronze-medal showing at the Bislett Games in the IAAF Diamond League meeting in Oslo, Norway, where he threw 86.35m to finish behind Germans Rohler (89.30m) and Johannes Vetter (87.11m).
Overall, there are 58 athletes (30 women/28 men) representing 33 local sporting associations who are in contention for the top individual awards along with being among the “Top Ten” awardees.
In addition, the Jeffrey Stollmeyer was which is given to a National Governing Sports Body (Large) and (Small) that has outstandingly showcased initiatives, and made significant improvements in its administration and towards the development of its athletes will be presented along with the Lystra D Lewis award which is given at the discretion of the panel of the First Citizens Sports Foundation to an individual, team or group whose performance has impacted significantly on the national sport landscape.