MINSK, 15 February (BelTA) – Italian wheelchair fencer Beatrice Vio was named the winner of Laureus World Sports Disability Award. Among the nominees was eleven-time Paralympic champion and most decorated athlete of the 2016 Rio Paralympics swimmer Igor Boki, BelTA learned from the Belarusian Swimming Federation.
To determine the winners, the Laureus Nominations Panel, composed of professional sports editors, writers and broadcasters from more than 120 countries, vote to create a shortlist of six nominations in five categories. Then, 50 members of the Laureus World Sports Academy, which includes outstanding retired athletes, select the winner by voting in a secret ballot.
The Laureus Nominations Panel shortlisted the Belarusian athlete into the Sportsperson of the Year with a disability category where Igor Boki was one of the favorites. The final vote, however, decided in favor of Italian wheelchair fencer Beatrice Vio, who won the 2016 Paralympic gold.
Eight-time Olympic sprint champion Usain Bolt was named the Sportsman of the Year. He became the four-time winner, joining tennis legend Roger Federer.
Four-time Olympic champion Simone Biles of the United States also won top honors at the Laureus World Sports Awards. Chicago Cubs (baseball) took the Team of the Year award. American swimmer Michael Phelps was recognized as the Comeback of the Year. Leicester City won the Spirit of Sport Award for winning the Premier League.
The awards ceremony was held in Monaco on 14 February. British actor Hugh Grant was a special guest at the event.
The Laureus World Sports Awards is an annual award ceremony honoring remarkable individuals from the world of sports along with the greatest sporting achievements throughout the year.More about Sport