CLASS ABOVE: Whakatane’s Lisa Carrington on her way to victory in the K1 200m. Photo Vera Bucsu

LISA Carrington might need to buy a new trophy cabinet before long.

The Eastern Bay Canoe Club paddler was once again recognised for her paddling ability by being named the Sportswoman of the Year for the fourth consecutive year at the Halberg Awards in Auckland last week.

Carrington, who won two world championship golds in the K1 200m and K1 500m, outclassed a talented field to bag the award.

She overcame challenges from Silver Ferns captain Laura Langman, motocross rider Courtney Duncan and snowboarder Zoi Sadowski-Synnott to claim the award.

It puts her alongside Dame Valerie Adams as one of only two athletes to win the award four or more times and consecutively.

Adams still holds the record with seven successive Halberg Awards, but Carrington will be a good chance to make it five in a row with the Olympics later this year, where she will be favoured to add to her previous Olympic golds.

Speaking from Cambridge where she was preparing for the national canoe sprint championships which were held over the weekend, Carrington said it was an awesome honour to again win the award.

“This award goes out to my team. I am not a one-woman band. I have a lot of team-mates out on the water every day with me.

“I have an amazing group of coaches, and my support crew, there’s so many people that help me to be where I am, and I am really privileged and grateful to have the opportunity that I have to do what I love doing, so thank you all for that.’’

The former Whakatane High School student congratulated all the fellow athletes in attendance at the awards and apologised for her absence as she was preparing for the New Zealand Canoe Sprint National Championships, which were held from Friday to Sunday.

“Sorry I couldn’t be there.’’

“I am so stoked to be part of New Zealand sport again this year.’’

Meanwhile, at the national championships Carrington showed why she’s considered a favourite to go back-to-back at the Tokyo Olympics with a powerful showing at Lake Karapiro in the K1 200m.

She won the race in impressive fashion with her time of 38.50 seconds just half a second outside her world record best.

It was a high-quality final as she led from start to finish to defeat Hawke’s Bay paddler Aimee Fisher and North Shore’s Caitlin Ryan.

The seven-time world K1 200m champion said victory was a good first appearance on the road to Tokyo.

“I turn up every year trying to do my best, and today was all about making sure I got myself in a space where I could perform,’’ Carrington said.

Her unbeaten run is impressive and stretches back eight years.

“What is most pleasing is the depth and quality has improved immensely in New Zealand since I first started paddling.’’

The 30-year-old also retained her K1 500m crown.

brayden.lindsay@thebeacon.co.nz