Taylor Chace (left) of the U.S. National Sled Hockey Team and Tyler Walker of the U.S. Paralympics Alpine Skiing National Team are both nominated for the International Paralympic Committee Athlete of the Month for December 2012. Chace is also nominated for the United States Olympic Committee's Male Athlete of the Month.
The International Paralympic Committee (IPC) has announced its shortlist for December's Athlete of the Month award, with Americans Taylor Chace of sled hockey and Tyler Walker of alpine skiing making the cut. Through Jan. 14, the public can vote for the winner via the poll on Paralympic.org homepage.
Chace is also nominated for the United States Olympic Committee’s Male Athlete of the Month while table tennis Pam Fontaine is nominated for Female Athlete of the Month. To vote for Chace, who is the only Paralympian in contention, go to http://twtpoll.com/nwbgku by Jan. 10. Vote for Fontaine at http://twtpoll.com/xi64pg.
The public counts for 10-percent of the USOC outcome.
Last month was highlighted by the World Sledge Hockey Challenge, IPC Alpine Skiing Europa Cup and NORAM Cup, Ice Sledge Hockey New Year's Cup, IPC Nordic Skiing World Cup and the Wheelchair Fencing World Cup.
The finalists for December's Athlete of the Month include:
- Alexey Bugaev (Russia): The standing alpine skier won four Europa Cup races and came second in two in December, only being beaten by Switzerland's Thomas Pfyl. Bugaev now tops the men's Europa Cup rankings.
- Chace: The sled hockey star scored the only goal in Team USA's 1-0 win over Canada in the gold-medal game of the World Sledge Hockey Challenge.
- Zsuzsanna Krajnyak (Hungary): The wheelchair fencer won both the women's epee and foil category A events at the Wheelchair Fencing World Cup. She was the top performer there.
- Anna Schaffelhuber (Germany): The sitting alpine skier came first in five races and second in one, beaten by Austria's Claudia Loesch. Schaffelhuber, one to watch, now tops the women's rankings.
- Walker: The sit-skier dominated the IPC Alpine Skiing NORAM Cup in December, winning five out of six races, only being beaten by his teammate Heath Calhoun in the giant slalom to place second.
The public now has until 17:00 (CEST) on Jan. 14 to vote for which athlete it thought had the best performance last month.
The nominations are compiled from submissions by National Paralympic Committees and International Federations.