AURORA, Ill. – Following his second consecutive Monster Energy AMA Supercross, an FIM World Championship, title, Ryan Villopoto was nominated for the MTR Western Sports Star of the Year, Seattle’s oldest and most prestigious sports award.
Along with Villopoto, the Sports Star of the Year Nominees include Marshawn Lynch (Seattle Seahawks), Alex Morgan (USA Women’s Soccer), Eddie Johnson (MLS) and Kasey Kahne (NASCAR). Voting begins on Dec. 3, and fans can cast their vote at ssy.seattlesports.org.
“To have a Puget Sound local as the two-time defending Monster Energy Supercross Champion is exciting and a source of pride for all of us. Ryan’s accomplishments certainly stand alongside the top athletes that have called the Pacific Northwest home and we are excited for him to stand alongside them in pursuit of our longest standing and most prestigious award, the Sports Star of the Year,” said Ralph Morton, executive director of the Seattle Sports Commission.
“It is an honor to be nominated for this award,” said Villopoto. “I remember all of the great sports stars from Seattle growing up and now that I am considered one of them it is very humbling. The Pacific Northwest has been a great home for me and it is a privilege to be up against so many talented athletes.”
Villopoto, a native of Poulsbo, Wash., has 24 450SX wins and is eighth on the all-time win list, including the 2009 Main Event in Seattle. He is one of nine riders to win more than one 450SX Championship and one of five riders to do so in consecutive seasons. In 58 450SX Class starts, he has finished on the podium 48 times. He is also the 2001 Western Regional 250SX Champion.
The MTR Western Sports Star of the Year is an annual awards gala that brings the Puget Sound region together once a year to celebrate its sport heroes and legends. In its 78th year, it is one of Seattle’s oldest and most prestigious awards. Former winners include Olympic champions, Hall of Fame football, basketball and baseball players and legends from Seattle’s motorsports history.