Sir Frank Williams
has been named as the winner of the Helen Rollason award during the annual BBC
Sports Personality of the Year event.
The award, named after the late BBC
presenter Helen Rollason, is handed out to a fiugure for 'outstanding achievement in the face of adversity' – with previous winners including paralympic champion Tanni Grey-Thompson and charity fundraisers Jane Tomlinson and Phil Packer.
Williams took the honour for the way in which he has led the Williams
team to 16 championship titles despite being confined to a wheelchair since an accident in 1986 left him with a broken neck.
"It's been a great journey, one I'd love to do again if I was younger,” he said as he accepted the award. “I wouldn't try and do anything different except try and avoid the accidents."
Williams added that the first win, with Clay Regazzoni in 1979, and Alan Jones' title win in 1980 were the main highlights of his career.
"The first Grand Prix win at Silverstone in front of a home crowd [was a career highlight] - it was a really strong demonstration run, by a very superior car," said Williams. "[Another highlight was] in 1980, the first world championship won by Alan Jones, with my fantastic partner Patrick Head who made the world's best racing cars."
The overall Sports Personality of the Year award went to the jockey AP McCoy, who beat darts champion Phil Taylor and athlete Jessica Ennis to top spot.