Tue | Sep 26, 2017

Grateful Bolt, Fraser-Pryce top RJR Sportsman, Sportswoman awards

Published:Friday | January 15, 2016 | 1:01 PM

Sprinters Usain Bolt and Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce were on Friday night presented with the 2015 RJR Sports Foundation National Sportsman and Sportswoman of the Year awards at the Jamaica Pegasus.

Bolt was winning his sixth Sportsman of the Year award, after copping titles in 2008, 2009, 2011, 2012 and 2013, while Fraser-Pryce, who also won in 2012 and 2013, was winning her third Sportswoman of the year award.

"I want to thank my fans, who supported me this season, I really needed it. I want to thank my coach, I put him through a lot of stress, he has stood by me this season ... I want to thank God and I promise I will try to do my best this season," said a grateful Bolt.

Fraser-Pryce, who won gold medals in the 100m and 4x100m at last year's World Championships in Beijing, China, as well as the Diamond League 100m title, was also presented with the Sagicor Iconic award. The sprinter has won two Olympic gold medals and seven at the World Championships level since her 'arrival' at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing.

"Everything I have done is attributed to how much God has blessed me," said Fraser-Pryce. "I am honoured to be here collecting this award a third time. I want to thank my coach for believing in me and putting up with me; and for me putting up with him sometimes."

Bolt's award, which now puts him second in the all - time list behind boxer Michael McCallum (7) came after another dominant season by the powerful sprinter, who won three gold medals at the World Championships (100m, 200m and 4x100m).

World Championships 100m hurdles gold medal winner Danielle Williams was the runner-up to the Sportswoman of the year, with shot put bronze medal winner O'Dayne Richards took home the male equivalent.

The first award of the evening went to veteran quarter-miler and cancer survivor Novlene Williams-Mills, who was presented with the Chairman's award.

The People's Choice Award for 'Performance of the Year' went to Jamaica's senior women's 4x400m relay team, which won gold at the World Championships, while former Netball Jamaica president Marva Bernard received the Lifetime Achievement Award.