Wells wins Cen­tral Otago sports award

Central Otago Mirror - - SPORT - STAFF REPORTER

Wanaka’s Jossi Wells, 26, has been named Cen­tral Otago’s top sportsman for 2016 and the re­gion’s supreme ath­lete.

He adds the awards to the haul he has been col­lect­ing since he be­gan com­pet­i­tive ski­ing as a 9-year-old.

The awards are based on 2016 per­for­mances. The supreme ath­lete wins the Bruce Grant Me­mo­rial tro­phy.

Wells’ stel­lar 2016 started with an X-Game gold medal in slopestyle freeski in Jan­uary and con­tin­ued when he was named Snow Sports NZ’s supreme ath­lete of the year for the third time in Septem­ber.

Wells has spent a decade as one of the world’s top freeski ath­letes and now has six X-Games medals to his name.

He added a bronze at an Olympic qual­i­fy­ing event in South Korea and a fourth in the Dew Tour slopestyle in the USA in De­cem­ber.

Wanaka triath­lete Nicky Sa­muels won the se­nior sportswoman ti­tle for her strong come­back from in­jury to fin­ish 13th at the Rio Olympics, more than 20 places ahead of her Lon­don Olympics re­sult.

Wanaka freeskier Finn Bilous was named top ju­nior sportsman for win­ning New Zealand’s first medals at a Win­ter Youth Olympics, a sil­ver and a bronze.

He also won a gold at the Europa Cup, two golds at the USASA Cham­pi­onships and a sil­ver at the Cardrona Games.

Bilous won the 2016 Snow Sports NZ break­through sea­son award and was a fi­nal­ist for the Emerg­ing Ta­lent Awards at the Hal­berg Awards.

Queen­stown alpine skier Alice Robin­son was named 2016’s top ju­nior sportswoman.

Robin­son’s 2016 re­sults in­cluded a top 10 fin­ish in Italy, be­fore go­ing on to add the un­der16 ti­tle at the USSA west­ern re­gional fi­nals.

That was fol­lowed by a gold in the gi­ant slalom and sil­ver in the Su­per G at the United States Na­tional fi­nals.

She also claimed the under-16 Youth Na­tional Series ti­tle for the sec­ond year in a row.

Top team was the Sky City South­ern Stam­pede, for its backto-back New Zealand Ice Hockey League cham­pi­onships.

The team won 12 of its 16 games.

It thrashed Can­ter­bury in the home-and- away fi­nals series.

Wanaka snow­board coach Sean Thomp­son was named coach of the year.

The Snow Sports NZ coach has guided Car­los Gar­cia Knight and Christy Prior to top re­sults on the in­ter­na­tional stage.

The John Fitzhar­ris Ser­vices to Sport Award was awarded to Wanaka yacht­ing stal­wart Steve Dickey.

Dickey was recog­nised for his 10 year con­tri­bu­tion to the ad­min­is­tra­tion and daily op­er­a­tion of the Wanaka Yacht Club.

The awards were pre­sented at a cer­e­mony in Queen­stown on Fri­day night.

ROBYN EDIE

Jossi Wells was named Cen­tral Otago’s top sportsman for 2016.

JAMES AL­LAN

The Sky City South­ern Stam­pede were named best Cen­tral Otago team.

CLIVE ROSE

Finn Bilous was named Cen­tral Otago’s best ju­nior sportsman in 2016.

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