Mark Cavendish Voted 2011 BBC Sports Personality of the Year

Cav-David Davies-The Guardian

World Road Race Champion and Tour de France green jersey winner, Mark Cavendish won the 2011 BBC Sports Personality of the Year award by a landslide with nearly 50% of the 342,147 votes cast.

The other nominees included Oakley teammate and US Open winner, Rory McIlroy, track and field star Mo Farah, cricketers Alastair Cook and Andrew Strauss, golfers Luke Donald and Darren Clarke, hurdler Dai Greene, boxer Amir Khan and tennis player Andy Murray.

The 26-year-old is only the third cyclist to win after Tommy Simpson in 1965 and Sir Chris Hoy in 2008.

“[The BBC Sports Personality of the Year] award is a landmark for cycling,” Cav said at the ceremony. "For cycling to be recognized in a non-Olympic year is unheard of.”

“I am absolutely speechless – some of my team-mates here will say that is a rare thing,” Cav continued. “Just to be nominated was an incredible feeling.”

Cavendish is a fitting winner for a new era with the award providing recognition not only for his outstanding achievements, but for his exuberant and unapologetic personality as well as.

In 2011 Cavendish won five stages of this year’s Tour de France – including the final stage in Paris – to clinch the green jersey. He had 15 stage wins to his name prior to this year’s Tour, but had yet to finish at the top of the sprint standings.

The Manxman followed that success by confirming Britain’s emergence as a major nation in road as well as track cycling by taking gold at the World Championships in Copenhagen in September.

In November, Cavendish was awarded an MBE for his services to cycling and won the Sports Journalists’ Association sportsman of the year award in December.

Congratulations to Cav for an incredible 2011!

As a favorite in London and high expectations for next year’s Tour, 2012 promises to be equally exciting!

Author

Elishia Matta; Photo: David Davies, The Guardian

Date

December 30, 2011