Phelps and Franklin Top the 2012 USA Swimming Golden Goggle Awards
NEW YORK – Michael Phelps (Baltimore, Md.) and Missy Franklin (Centennial, Colo.) took home top honors Monday night at the ninth-annual USA Swimming Golden Goggle Awards. Phelps and Franklin earned the Male and Female Athlete of the Year award at the star-studded gala, held at the New York Marriott Marquis.
This year’s event, hosted by Bob Costas of NBC Sports, celebrated the accomplishments of the 2012 U.S. Olympic Swim Team. Team USA dominated the competition in London, earning 31 medals – 16 gold, 9 silver and 6 bronze, nearly 30 percent of the total medals earned by all American Olympians in London.
Phelps’ award for Male Athlete of the Year came in the wake of his historic performance in London this summer. Phelps capped his amazing career by becoming the most decorated Olympian in history. His six medals in London catapulted his career Olympic medals to 22, 18 of which are gold.
Franklin took home two awards Monday, winning the award for Female Athlete of the Year and Relay Performance of the Year as part of the women’s 4x100m medley relay team. At the 2012 Olympics, Franklin earned a total of five medals (four gold medals and one bronze). She won gold and set world records in the 4x100m medley and 200m back. She also earned gold in the 100m back and a bronze medal in the 4x100m free relay.
Katie Ledecky (Bethesda, Md.) also took home two Golden Goggle Awards, earning Breakout Performer of the Year and Female Race of the Year for her American-record performance in the 800m free. Ledecky, who beat the 800m free field by over four seconds, left London as the youngest U.S. gold medalist of the Games.
The Male Race of the Year award went to Nathan Adrian (Bremerton, Wash.) for his gold-medal performance in the 100m free. Adrian, who won the race by just .01 seconds, became the first U.S. man to win the event since 1988.
Franklin and teammates Rebecca Soni (Plainsboro, N.J.), Dana Vollmer (Granbury, Texas) and Allison Schmitt (Canton, Mich.) also picked up the Relay Performance of the Year Award for their gold-medal performance in the women’s 4x100m medley relay at the Olympics. The women’s team broke the world record in the event, winning the final women’s swimming event at the Olympics.
Jessica Hardy (Long Beach, Calif.) was awarded the Perseverance Award for her performance in 2012. Hardy, who missed the 2008 Olympics due to a suspension, bounced back to qualify for the 2012 Olympic Team in multiple events. Hardy left London with a gold and bronze medal from the 4x100m medley relay and 4x100m free relay, respectively.
The Coach of the Year award was presented to Bob Bowman. Bowman was an assistant coach to the 2012 men’s U.S. Olympic Swim Team and is the head coach and CEO of North Baltimore Aquatic Club. In addition to coaching Phelps to his history-making 22 Olympic medals, Bowman also coached Allison Schmitt to four Olympic medals.
Two special awards were also presented at the Golden Goggles – the Impact Award and the Athlete Humanitarian Award. Both awards are only given out during Olympic years. Jim Mulva of Phillips 66 was awarded the Impact Award for his work with USA Swimming through the years while Eric Shanteau (Lilburn, Ga.) took home the Athlete Humanitarian Award, which is awarded to a swimming athlete that gives back to the community.
USAswimming.org will provide highlights and video on-demand from the 2012 Golden Goggle Awards.