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Friday, 15 June, 2001, 23:04 GMT 00:04 UK
Honour for rising star MacArthur
Ellen MacArthur celebrates her second place in the Vendee Globe race
2001 has been an extraordinary year for Ellen MacArthur
Ellen MacArthur's MBE is the latest landmark in a phenomenal year that has seen her emerge as one of Britain's brightest young sporting stars.

Not content with re-writing the record books by becoming the fastest woman to complete the round the world yacht race, the 24-year-old also becomes one of the youngest people ever to be awarded an MBE.

Ellen, who is currently sailing in the Quiberon Trophy race, told BBC Sport Online she was thrilled with the honour, but was keen not to take too much personal credit.

"It's a great honour for me to receive this award and I'm delighted that the sport of sailing has been recognised," said Ellen from her Kingfisher yacht off the west coast of Brittany.

"However, I am accepting it on behalf of my family, shore team, sponsor and the general public everywhere for their unwavering support and encouragement - I could not have done it without them."

For most people her age, spending 94 solitary days at sea, experiencing some of the most gruelling conditions on earth is beyond the pale.

More awards?

Not for MacArthur. Just three months after finishing second in the 24,000-mile Vendee Globe single-handed around the world race last February, she was off again - in the 3,000-mile Challenge Mondial race.

This time, she was navigator on the Foncia boat, skippered by Frenchman Alain Gautier.

And they clinched a thrilling victory in the Spanish port of Tarragona over French rivals Belgacom.

MacArthur will now concentrate all her efforts on the Quiberon Trophy, which starts on Friday.

She has the opportunity to seek revenge on Michel Desjoyeaux - the man who pipped her to second place in the Vendee Globe race.

If MacArthur keeps going the way she has this year, more awards cannot be far away.

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Ellen MacArthur MBE
"It's fantastic news - great for sailing"
Queen's Birthday Honours

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15 Jun 01 | Sailing
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