After a year during which he made international news headlines more than once, two-time Olympic gold medallist Alistair Brownlee has been nominated for 2016 BBC sports personality of the year. The 28-year-old, who became the first triathlete to win back-to-back Olympic gold medals, delivered a dominating performance in Rio but received even more attention from news outlets this year when he helped his struggling brother Jonny across the finish line of the ITU Grand Final in Cozumel in September.
— BBCSPOTY (@BBCSPOTY) November 28, 2016
What an honour. Looking forward to the big night already. https://t.co/HlHx35qbSH
— Alistair Brownlee (@AliBrownleetri) November 28, 2016
Brownlee has become a household name as one of the most dominant men to ever compete in the sport. While in contention for the win at the Grand Final this year, he slowed down with metres to go before the finish line to help Jonny — who appeared to be on the verge of collapsing — cross the the line. While many called the moment “selfless” and “inspiring,” it became controversial. Many saw the physical assistance as an obstruction of fair competition. The Spanish Triathlon Federation even submitted an appeal to have both Brownlees disqualified from the competition.
Brownlee is up against 15 other contenders for the award. Among them are famed tennis player Andy Murray and track superstar Mo Farah.