NAIROBI, Kenya December 15 – Motorcross speedstar Shivam Vinayak’s ground breaking feat at the Annual Safaricom Sports Personality of the Year Awards has received wide acknowledgment including that of top echelons in the country.
It was literally the dawn of a new era in motocross as it was the first time the bike sport received recognition and due respect during the Gala Night full of pomp and pageantry at the leafy Aboretum Gardens.
Information Minister Hon. Samuel Phogisio and his Sports counterpart Dr. Paul Otuoma who graced the occasion paid homage to the indefatigable rider for virtually sweeping all titles that came his way on two wheels and by extension, racking up SOYA’S Most Promising Sportsman of the Year 2011 Award!
“Its quite encouraging to note that the organizers of SOYA have diversified the criterion of selection and acknowledged Motorsports in which participants are making leaps and bounds in their careers,” said Dr. Otuoma.
Ever since the inauguration of SOYA Awards eight years ago, athletics, volleyball and secondary school sports have been riding on the crest of the waves in this particular award category with other disciplines playing second fiddle.
During the colorful occasion, Shivam beat four other nominees including 3000 steeplechase boys world champion William Malel, world 800m world youth athletics record holder Leonard Kosencha, Silas Kipruto and fellow motocross MX125 champion Ivan Guya.
Kenya Motor Sports Federation (KMSF) which has previously won the best Federation accolades proved that it still is a force to reckon with when it was declared among the four nominees in the status.
While holding the coveted trophy aloft amidst clicking cameras from a battery of journalists and millions more watching the proceedings on the Supersport Pay-Tv Channel, a flabbergasted Shivam was all smiles.
“I didn’t expect to win this award. I’m lost for words. This is indeed the most prestigious trophy I have ever received. To be recognized alongside world athletics beaters and volleyballers is a great honor. Next year I hope to defend all my titles and win the regional and Africa Championships,” proclaimed Shivam, who has a burning ambition to emulate crack American rider James Stewart.
Shivam noted that its pretty hard to compete at the international stage given the prohibitive costs it entails.
Shivam- a dentistry student at the University of Nairobi- wants to win the African Championship next year and help young budding riders rise through the motocross ranks and emerge world beaters.
During the colorful year, Shivam won the National Motocross MX1 title with 464points, the National Enduro Championship on 111points, the Cross Country Bike category with 67points and 3rd in the FIM Africa Cross Country Bike and Quad Championship held in Soysambu Ranch of the Delamere Estates.
Shivam who acquired the new Monster Energy Kawasaki 450cc contraption mid-season from down South lost his 125cc Enduro Championship- he won in 2009 and 2010-to Shaun Miller.