Olympic windsurfing star Bryony Shaw has capped off her impressive 2013 season by claiming the British Sailing Team’s Athlete of the Year prize:
The 30-year-old was handed the BOA Athlete of the Year trophy for Sailing at a team presentation at Hayling Island Sailing Club on Friday (22 November), having claimed an impressive seven podium finishes from the nine events she’s contested this year, including her first ever RS:X World Championship medal – a silver – from the event at Buzios, Brazil, in March.
After a tough 2012 season, with illness having hampered her Olympic hopes, Shaw was overjoyed with her consistency and success in 2013, and on receiving her award from RYA Olympic Manager Stephen Park, she paid tribute to the team around her who have helped her get back on track this season.
“It’s a complete surprise as I thought Nick [Dempsey] would win this award, but it’s fantastic!” she enthused.
“2012 was obviously a really difficult year for me, but I’m really grateful to my coach Dom [Tidey], the sports science guys, Izzy [Hamilton] and my little training group. We’ve got a good team there all pushing each other on and it’s really paying off with results on the water.”
Shaw’s World Championship silver kick-started her season’s medal-winning streak, which encompassed golds at the ISAF Sailing World Cup in Hyeres, the Brest Open Europeans and the Sail for Gold Regatta, with silver medals also at the Palma World Cup, the EUROSAF Champions Sailing Cup event in Garda, the European Championships and the Santander Test Event.
Shaw’s coach Dom Tidey also picked up the British Sailing Team’s ‘Golden Funnel’ award for coaching excellence, while Alexandra Rickham and Niki Birrell were handed the RYA Paralympic Classes Athlete of the Year trophy for the second consecutive year for their podium-topping performances at the SKUD World and European Championships.
Two of the British Sailing Team’s rising stars – Finn sailor Peter McCoy and Laser sailor Alex Mills Barton – were voted by their peers as the joint winners of the Podium Potential Sailor of the Year Award.
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