Canada’s Olympic Successes Dominate CP Athlete of the Year Awards
The successes achieved by Canadian Olympic athletes at the 2016 Rio Summer Games have brought them three top sports awards – in addition to their Olympic medals.
The Canadian women’s swim team has been named the Canadian Press team of the year today, following the media organization’s naming of top male and female athletes earlier this week.
Having dominated in the Olympic pool and having won six swimming medals there, the women’s swim team received 15 votes (23 per cent) from surveyed sports editors and broadcasters across the country. They were ahead of the runner-up Toronto Raptors with 11 votes (17 per cent) and the third-place Toronto Blue Jays with nine votes (14 per cent).
One of the team’s break-out stars, 16-year-old Penelope “Penny” Oleksiak, won freestyle gold, butterfly silver and swam the anchor legs for a pair of freestyle relay bronze medals. The Toronto-based swimmer was named the Canadian Press female athlete of the year Tuesday. The Bobbie Rosenfeld Award is given to Canada’s female athlete of the year.
Meanwhile, sprinter Andre De Grasse, who raced to three Olympic medals in Rio, was named winner of the Lionel Conacher Award as the CP male athlete of the year.
The 22-year-old Markham, ON runner won silver in the 200 and bronze in both the 100 and 4 x 100-metre relay in making his Olympic debut.
Hockey star Sidney Crosby came in second.
CP sports staff first conducted a poll to determine the nation’s top athlete, of either gender, in 1932. Separate polls for the best male and female athletes were conducted beginning the following year. The CP formalized the poll into an award in 1978, presenting the winner with a plaque.
Team Canada at the Rio 2016 Opening Ceremony. Canada’s Olympic successes have also been recognized by Canadian Press and its 2016 Athlete of the Year Awards. Photo courtesy Canadian Olympic Committee.