The Speedo proved mightier than the pedal in a marquee all-Island showdown Thursday night at the 47th Sport B.C. Awards Banquet hosted by broadcaster Brian Williams and held at the River Rock Show Theatre in Richmond.
London Olympics silver-medallist 1,500-metre freestyle swimmer Ryan Cochrane was named 2012 B.C. amateur male athlete of the year ahead of fellow-Victorian and Giro d’Italia cycling champion Ryder Hesjedal, who was also nominated.
The result might be considered a bit of an upset since Hesjedal was named Canadian male athlete of the year in Canadian Press balloting in December.
Soccer star Christine Sinclair of Burnaby, brilliant in captaining Canada to a controversial near massive upset of the U.S. in the semifinals and eventually to the bronze medal at the London Olympics, was named B.C. female amateur athlete of the year. She was also Canadian Press’ Canadian female athlete of the year for 2012.
Balloting for the Sport B.C. Awards is annually conducted by a panel of media members and amateur sports officials from across the province.
Trevor Hirschfield from Parksville, London Paralympic wheelchair rugby medallist with the Canadian team, was named top B.C. athlete with a disability.
Peter Lawless of Victoria, who guided the Canadian wheelchair track team to medals at the London Paralympics, was named B.C. coach of the year.
Rugby player Fergus Hall of GNS, tipped as a future international for Canada, was named male high school athlete of the year.
The Penticton Vees’ overwhelming season was rewarded. The Vees, who set a North American junior hockey record with 42 consecutive victories en route to the 2012 RBC Cup national title, were named B.C. team of the year.
© Copyright 2013