European Cross Country Champion, Fionnuala Britton (Kilcoole AC) has today been named The Irish Times / Irish Sports Council ‘Sportswoman of the Month’ for December 2012. This is following her outstanding performance at this year’s European Cross Country Championships in Budapest, Hungary.
Britton is the first woman to successfully defend the European Cross Country title which she first won in Slovenia last year. Leading from start to finish, Britton powered through the sub-zero temperatures to hold off another strong challenge from Ana Dulce Félix of Portugal, who finished second to Britton in last year’s race. This is Fionnuala’s fourth time to win the ‘Sportswoman of the Month’ Award.
The 28-year-old from Newcastle, Wicklow along with teammates Linda Byrne (Dundrum South Dublin AC), Ava Hutchinson (Dundrum South Dublin AC), Lizzie Lee (Leevale AC), Sarah McCormack (Clonliffe Harriers AC) and Sara Treacy (Moynalvey AC) also won a team gold for Ireland at the European Cross Country Championships in Budapest. Britton has had a wonderful start to 2013 by winning gold at the Bupa Great Edinburgh Cross Country. Her next major appointment is the World Cross Country Championships in Bydgoszcz, Poland in March.
The accolade of winning the Irish Times/Irish Sports Council ‘Sportswoman of the Month’ means Fionnuala will be the first of 12 Sportswoman to be in the running for the prestigious title of ‘Sportswoman of the Year’.
Established in 2004, the aim of the Sportswoman of the Year awards is to recognize the abilities and achievements of women in Irish sports. The awards run over a 12 month period, with the judges selecting a winner each month for her ability to excel at sport. From the 12 monthly winners, the overall Sportswoman of the Year is selected and announced in December. The winner is decided by a judging panel, which is represented by individuals from The Irish Times, RTÉ, and the Evening Herald.
Further details on the Sportswoman of the Year Awards can be found on www.irishtimes.com/events/sportswoman/.