American sprinter Allyson Felix was recently named the 2007 Los Angeles Sportswoman of the Year by LA Sports Council, topping a thrilling year in which the 22-year-old won three gold medals at the IAAF World Championships and was named an ESPN ESPY award winner.
Felix, who attended Los Angeles Baptist high school and graduated from the University of Southern California last term, was honoured in January alongside of David Beckham, the men's winner at a black-tie dinner at the Beverly Hilton in Beverly Hills, CA.
“It was nice to be an athlete from an Olympic sport and get that exposure and especially to be from Los Angeles and get that recognition,” Felix stated on an online diary maintained by the International Association of Athletics Federations.
“My only disappointment was not getting to meet David Beckham, who was named Sportsman of the Year.”
Felix's golden performances, along with her incredible versatility from 100m to 400m, also made the LA Sports Council's list of Greatest Sports Moments of 2007, though Los Angeles Laker forward Kobe Bryant was eventually selected the winner.
Bryant won the award for displaying excellence on the court in leading the USA team -- which included stars such as Jason Kidd, Labron James and Carmelo Anthony -- to a 118-81 victory over Argentina in 2007 FIBA Americas Championship in Las Vegas, Nevada.
The win helped the USA complete a 10-0 tournament and qualify them for this year's Olympic Games in Beijing in August, where Felix is also expected to compete on the track in her speciality, the 200m, and both sprint relays.
Felix demonstrated an unbridled excellence in her sport last summer, winning gold medals in the 200m (21,81), 4x100m (41,98) and 4x400m (3.18,55) at the world championships -- only the second time the triple has ever been accomplished on that level.
Marion Jones, who is banned two years from the sport for steroid abuse, was the first to win three gold medals, taking the 100m, 200m and 4x100m at the 1997 World Championships in Athens.
Felix, whose 48,0 split is arguably the best one-lap carry an American woman has ever negotiated in the long relay, also managed last summer to defeat 400m star Sanya Richards at her own distance here in Stockholm, running a lifetime best 49,70 - the sixth-fastest in the world last year.
Richards had attempted to double up at the DN Galan, with the 100m contested before the 400m, but was unable to out-sprint her younger rival down the homestretch.
Richards, who, along with Russian pole vaulter Yelena Isinbayeva, won an equal share of the $1 million Golden League jackpot offered by the IAAF for winning each of a series of select competitions at 400m.
Felix's first senior international championships netted her a silver medal at the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens -- running a world junior record 22,11 in finishing second to Jamaican Veronica Campbell's 22,05.
Since that defeat, Felix, whose personal best of 21,81 helped enable her to repeat as world champion last summer in Osaka, Japan, is equal to the 12th-fastest female all-time, and has collected five gold medals in the five events she has participated in at the 2005 and 2007 World Championships.
Felix has only one defeat in 20 finals dating back to 2004-August-25.
The Los Angeles Sports Council, which is one of America's leading civic sports support organizations, prides itself on its unwavering support of track and field -- a sport which has had 137 IAAF world records set in Los Angeles, the highest total of any city in the United States.
The council held a poll in 1995 to determine the 100 greatest moments of Los Angeles-area sports, with Carl Lewis was voted 24th on the list for winning four gold medals at the 1984 Olympic Games. Felix has the opportunity to conceivably run in three more Olympic Games, with a 400m/200m double a great possibility in the future.
:: Allyson Felix fact-file:
Allyson Felix was born on 1985-November-18 in Los Angeles, and is the daughter of an ordained minister.
Felix, runs for adidas and bypassed the NCAA collegiate system during her years of study at USC, where she majored in Elementary Education. She went straight to the professional levels from high school, where she was a stand-out sprinter following in the shadows of Marion Jones and Angela Williams.
Felix has run the fastest 200m time in world history for girls aged 16-19, and is on course to break into the top-10 on the all-time world list.
Felix is coached by Bobby Kersee, the husband of American- and world heptathlon world record-holder Jackie Joyner-Kersee, and utilises Renaldo Nehemiah, the former 110m hurdle world record-holder, for agent services.
Felix has personal bests of 11,01 (100m), 21,81 (200m), 36,33i (300m) and 49,70 (400m). Allyson Felix's homepage can be found at: http://www.allysonfelixusa.com
__________________________________________________2007 World Top-10 Lists In Events Which Felix Participated
10,89 (+1,0) Veronica Campbell JAM
10,90 (+2,0) Torri Edwards USA
10,95 (+2,0) Me'Lisa Barber USA
10,97 (-0,7) Sanya Richards USA
11,01 (+1,2) Allyson Felix USA
11,01 (-0,2) Lauryn Williams USA
11,02 (+0,8) Mikele Barber USA
11,02 (-0,2) Carmelita Jeter USA
11,03 (+1,0)Kerron Stewart JAM
11,04 (-0,3) Tezdzhan Naimova BUL
11,04 (-0,1) Christine Arron FRA
200m21,81 (+1,7) Allyson Felix USA
22,31 (+1,6) Rachelle Smith USA
22,31 (-0,2) Sanya Richards USA
22,32 (+0,5) Ebonie Floyd USA
22,34 (+1,7) Veronica Campbell JAM
22,38 (-1,6) Muriel Hurtis-Houairi FRA
22,41 (+1,3) Kerron Stewart JAM
22,43 (+0,7) Tezdzhan Naimova BUL
22,46 (+2,0) Lashauntea Moore USA
22,49 (+0,4) Simone Facey JAM
22,49 (-0,1) Debbie Ferguson McKenzie BAH
49,61 Christine Ohuruogu GBR
49,64 Dee Dee Trotter USA
49,65 Nicola Sanders GBR
49,66 Novlene Williams JAM
49,70 Allyson Felix USA
49,84 Natasha Hastings USA
49,93 Natalya Antyukh RUS
50,15 Ami Mbacké Thiam SEN
50,16 Ana Guevara MEX