BARNT Green athlete Becky Straw has been named The Advertiser’s Sports Personality of the Year after she topped our internet vote.
The teenager saw off the challenge of Bromsgrove batsman Ashley Newdick, Droitwich boxer Michael Pardoe, Great Britain hockey star Dan Fox and disabled athlete Glenn Scott to take the title.
Becky enjoyed a fine 2012 as she won the 1,500 metres National Schools Championships and won the English Cross Country Association Championships. She also represented England under-20s.
Mother Sally Straw said: “Becky is thrilled to have won Sports Personality.
“We were on holiday before Christmas so it was a surprise to be included in the shortlist.
“I don’t think she realised that people were aware of her, so it’s extra special to win the vote. Her 90-year-old nan is incredibly proud.”
The 17-year-old is now setting her sights on building on her breakthrough year.
She has been invited to complete in a senior cross country race in Valencia this weekend for club Birchfield Harriers.
The teenager is also hoping to qualify for the World Championships in Poland in March.
She will have to finish inside the top four at the trials, which will be staged at Coughton Park only a few weeks before the tournament.
“The last year Becky made a big breakthrough,” said her mother.
“To win two national titles in cross-country and the track was amazing and she wants to build on that success.
“Her biggest aim is to qualify for the World Championships in a few months’ time.”