Felix Sanchez wins Laureus Comeback Award

March 11, 2013
Felix Sanchez was celebrating after receiving the Laureus World Comeback of the Year Award, following his remarkable performance in London when he won the Olympic 400 metres hurdles gold medal – eight years after his victory in Athens and with exactly the same time of 47.63 secs.
The Dominican Republic’s Sanchez was presented with the coveted Award by Laureus World Sports Academy Member Nawal El Moutawakal at the globally televised Awards Ceremony in Rio de Janeiro. 
An emotionalSanchez paid a moving tribute to the support of his friends and family on stage, and also said: “Winning the Laureus Comeback Award means the world to me, especially knowing how hard it is to do this in the sport of athletics. Coming back is very rare and for about ten years now I have wanted to win a Laureus Award. Having a legend like Edwin Moses, who also ran in the 400 hurdles, as part of the Laureus Academy, it just means that much more to me.”
Laureus World Sports Academy Chairman Edwin Moses, who also won the Olympic 400 metres hurdles gold medal twice, in 1976 in Montreal and 1984 in Los Angeles, said: “Having trained for and competed in the 400 metres hurdles for over 12 years, believe me I can tell you this is one of the toughest events in track and field. That Felix Sanchez came back at the age of 34 to win a gold medal almost defies belief.
“He had a terrible time with injuries over the eight years since he won his first gold medal in Athens, but it shows amazing tenacity to be able to keep your spirit going and put in all the training you need to be successful. And then to have the perfect race plan and put it into action is a truly unforgettable achievement. He fully deserves this Laureus Award.”
Felix Sanchez added: “My first gold in Athens was very special, obviously it was my first and the first gold medal in the history of my country. But having dominated my sport for almost four years and having not lost a race in 43, it was all but a forgone conclusion. The one from London was different as I had not won a major race in years and was not being considered as a realistic medal hopeful.
“Last year I was more dedicated than ever knowing that it was my last real chance to win an Olympic medal after I had reached a point in my career where no one believed in me anymore. So to go in there against all odds and to run the exact same time as I had eight years before was the best feeling in the world.” 

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