Members of the Trinidad and Tobago men’s 4x400-metre relay team Jereem Richards and Renny Quow were elated that the entire team received the Sportsman of the Year Award, when the 23rd Annual TT Olympic Committee Awards Ceremony was held at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Port of Spain, on Friday night.
In an unorthodox decision, the men’s 4x400m team of Richards, Quow, Lalonde Gordon, Jarrin Solomon and Machel Cedenio won the Sportsman of the Year award rather than an individual. The men’s 4x400m relay team won gold at the 2017 London World Championships in a national record and world leading time of two minutes, 58.12 seconds (2:58.12) – the first ever gold for TT in that event at a major international meet.
Richards, who also earned bronze at the World Championships in the men’s 200m event, said the entire team deserved the award.
“I kind of expected we would have won it as a group. It was the best performance of 2017, so as a group performance, I think everyone on the team deserved it,” he said.
Quow, who competed in the preliminary round of the World Championships, said it was an incredible team effort which created history.
“It feels really good to actually to win this award because we all came together as a team and we could not have done it without the five of us. It is just teamwork, unity, and I just want to say thanks to my team because we had some ups and downs but in the end we prevailed. “What we did out there that was impressive, so for just one person to win it would be kind of embarrassing because what we did in the 4x4 that was phenomenal,” Quow said.
Among those in attendance were President Anthony Carmona, his wife Reema, and TT Olympic gold medallist Hasely Crawford.
Michelle-Lee Ahye won the Sportswoman of the Year award for the second consecutive year after a creditable year which included a sixth place finish in the women’s 100m final at the World Championships.
Collecting on behalf of her daughter was Raquel Ahye. Raquel said Michelle-Lee has been training hard in tough conditions at her base in Houston, Texas.
“This felt good (to collect the award) because hard work really pays off. I saw how my child trained in the cold in the winter, because we just came back last night (Thursday) from Houston. I am a proud mother to see my daughter working hard,” she said.
Raquel said the TT public must support the athletes and not make negative comments. “People don’t realise that these athletes work very hard to accomplish what they want in life, so people must stop talking and bashing these athletes,” she said.
Sportsman of the Year – Jereem Richards, Jarrin Solomon, Lalonde Gordon, Machel Cedenio, Renny Quow
Sportswoman of the Year – Michelle-Lee Ahye
Junior Sportswoman of the Year – Khalifa St Fort
Junior Sportsman of the Year – Adell Colthrust
People’s Choice Award – Jereem Richards
Sports Personality of the Year Award – Akeem Stewart
Future is Female Award – Merissa Aguilleira
Alexander B Chapman Award – Anthony “Dada” Wickham