18th December 2017
SIR MO FARAH WINS BBC SPORTS PERSONALITY OF THE YEAR
British athletics starred on a fantastic evening at the BBC Sports Personality of the Year 2017. Sir Mo Farah added his name to the famous trophy as he won the top prize on the night.
Elsewhere, T44 100m World Champion Jonnie Peacock finished third in the public vote whilst Dame Jessica Ennis-Hill received the Lifetime Achievement award, and Stephen Maguire, Benke Blomkvist and Christian Malcolm won Coach of the Year.
Farah finally won the top honour on the evening with over 83,000 votes from the public. In a year that he added his sixth world title to his collection at the London Stadium this summer and received a knighthood. As he bowed out from the track to focus on marathon running in 2018 and beyond, it was apt that Sir Mo received the famous award.
Despite a technology issue prevented the viewing public from hearing Fara’s acceptance speech he did return briefly to say:
“I didn’t ever imagine I would win this….I want to thank everyone who has supported me; I’m excited for the future and what it holds.”
Also in the top three was the marvellous Jonnie Peacock, the double Paralympic, world and European champion who claimed third spot by just 18 votes ahead of heavyweight boxer Anthony Joshua. The para athletics star has enjoyed a remarkable 2017 as he returned to the scene of his breakthrough triumph in 2012 to win a second World Para Athletics title this summer.
There was a delight as the triple world gold medallist and 2012 Olympic heptathlon champion, Dame Jessica Ennis-Hill received the Lifetime Achievement award. After bringing her wonderful career to a close after the Rio Olympic Games last year, the Sheffield-star received the huge honour of joining the greats to have received this prestigious award.
World titles in 2009, 2011 and 2015 – her last just over a year after giving birth to first child Reggie – were standout achievements in a prosperous career, but as highlighted on the night, the expectation on her shoulders at the London 2012 Olympic Games was immense. Her gold-medal winning moment will stay with a generation of sports fans forever, and for that reason she is a worthy recipient of the Lifetime achievement award.
To cap off an incredible night of celebrating the athletes on the track and in the field, the BBC awarded Maguire, Blomkvist and Malcolm with the prize of Coach (es) of the year. Their work with men’s 4x100m relay gold-medal winning team at this summer’s IAAF World Championships saw receive the honour, The quartet of CJ Ujah, Adam Gemili, Danny Talbot and Nethaneel Mitchell-Blake were guided to the world title by the trio, along with a hardworking set of support staff behind the scenes.
Head Coach of the Paralympic programme Paula Dunn was also nominated for Coach of the Year, whilst the British Para Athletics team, who won a staggering 39 medals including 18 golds at the Worlds in London this summer, were shortlisted for the team of the year, ultimately won by the Women’s England Cricket team.