2009 has been a difficult year for James Toseland, but the Englishman was reminded of his achievements when he returned home to collect an honorary doctorate from Sheffield Hallam University for services to sport.
"To be here and recognised by the city and Sheffield Hallam is possibly the most humbling thing I've ever received,” said Toseland, who learnt to ride on coal spoil heaps close to his Kiverton Park home.
"It's a great honour and the icing on the cake for me after winning two championships and hopefully another next year."
Toseland became the youngest ever World Superbike champion with Ducati in 2004, at the age of 23, then won the title again with Honda in 2007.
That prompted a move to the elite MotoGP World Championship, where Toseland made an impressive debut with second on the grid and sixth in his first race, on satellite Yamaha machinery.
Further sixth places followed, but his second season in MotoGP with Tech 3 saw his progress stall. The 29-year-old will return to WSBK to seek a third title with Yamaha in 2010.