NEW YORK - North Baltimore Aquatic Club swimming star Michael Phelps has added the American International Trophy to his portfolio of major honors, outpolling an array of global sports celebrities.
Phelps was announced yesterday as the 24th winner of the award, formerly known as the Jesse Owens International Trophy, honoring the top athlete of 2003 in world sports.
In voting by experts representing each continent, Phelps earned 64 points. Trailing him were Tour de France cycling champion Lance Armstrong (59), Swedish golf star Annika Sorenstam (31), and Mexico's Ana Guevara, world 400-meter track champion, and figure skating champion Michelle Kwan (14 each).
In his superb 2003 season, Phelps became the first man to win five titles at the U.S. Summer National Swimming Championships, and was named Swimmer of the Meet at the world championships, where he won six medals, four of them gold, and broke five world records.