Winners Studio - 2013 Laureus World Sports Awards

Usain Bolt named Sportsman of the Year

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London track champ Usain Bolt took top honors at the Laureus sports awards Monday night, earning his third Sportsman of the Year award since 2009.

Bolt, who swept the 100m, 200m, and 4x100m for the second consecutive Summer Games, beat out Tour de France winner and Olympic gold medalist Bradley Wiggins, two-time gold medalist Mo Farah, Argentine soccer player Lionel Messi, and F1 racer Sebastian Vettel for the award.

“This last season was a tough year,” Bolt admitted after winning his award. He suffered setbacks, injuries, and surprising back-t0-back losses to Jamaican teammate Yohan Blake at their country’s national championships just before the Olympics, but Bolt rebounded to beat Blake to the line in London.

British heptathlete Jessica Ennis took home the Sportswoman of the Year after winning gold in front of her home crowd last summer as part of an incredible evening for Great Britain, when Farah earned the 10,000m victory and Greg Rutherford surprised everyone by winning the long jump.

“It’s so surreal to stand here,” Ennis said. “It’s an incredible feeling.”

Ennis beat American gold medalists Allyson Felix, Missy Franklin, Lindsey Vonn, and Serena Williams, as well as Jamaica’s Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, who took home three medals last summer.

Elana Meyers Taylor crashes, brakewoman ejected (video)

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Two-time Olympic medalist Elana Meyers Taylor‘s start to the World Cup bobsled season was both record-breaking and painful.

Meyers Taylor and brakewoman Kehri Jones had the fastest women’s start time ever recorded on the 2010 Olympic track in Whistler, B.C., on Saturday.

But only one of them made it to the finish.

Meyers Taylor crashed the sled during their first run, with the impact causing Jones to eject out the back and slide along the chute before coming to a stop.

Both athletes were able to walk off the track, according to U.S. Bobsled.

Meyers Taylor missed four races last season while receiving treatment for long-term effects from a January 2015 concussion. She returned to win at the last two stops.

MORE: Why Steven Holcomb mulled retirement

Diver Sammy Lee, first Asian-American male gold medalist, dies at 96

NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 18:  1948 and 1952 Olympic platform diving gold medalist Dr. Sammy Lee and Olympic diving hopeful Brittany Viola of the United States attend the Team USA Road to London 100 Days Out Celebration in Times Square on April 18, 2012 in New York City.  (Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images for USOC)
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Dr. Sammy Lee, the first Asian-American man to win an Olympic gold medal and first male diver to repeat as Olympic champion, died of pneumonia at age 96 on Friday, according to the University of Southern California.

Lee was born in Fresno, Calif., of Korean parents.

He unretired from a medical career to compete in his first Olympics in London in 1948, after the Games took a 12-year break due to World War II.

Lee earned platform gold and springboard bronze in 1948 and then retired, unretired and defended his platform title in 1952. Lee and another Asian-American, Victoria Manolo-Draves, who had a Filipino father and English mother, both won diving titles in 1948, with Draves’ springboard gold coming first.

Lee also served in the U.S. Army Medical Corps during the Korean War.

He succeeded despite facing racial discrimination. From TeamUSA.org:

When Sammy was growing up, non-whites could use the pool where he practiced one day a week, on Wednesdays only. And then, as he has told it, the pool would be emptied after the non-whites used it, and fresh water was brought in the next day.

When the pool was off-limits, Sammy practiced by jumping into a sand pile.

Lee went on to coach divers, including Greg Louganis, after his competitive career, and continued his medical work. He graduated from USC’s medical school in 1947.

He is a member of the U.S. Olympic and International Swimming Halls of Fame.

*Correction: An earlier version of this post erroneously reported Lee was the first Asian-American Olympic champion. He was the second.