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Thread: Britain's Olympic heroes win gongs in New Year's H

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    Default Britain's Olympic heroes win gongs in New Year's H

    LONDON: Britain's Olympic heroes added a fresh haul of gongs to their Beijing medals Wednesday in the New Year's Honours List, also notably featuring Formula One champion Lewis Hamilton.

    Music stars including rock legend and Led Zeppelin frontman Robert Plant were also among the hundreds of Britons from celebrities to housewives to be honoured by Queen Elizabeth II.

    Track cycling star Chris Hoy, who won three gold medals at the Beijing Games in August, received a knighthood.

    In an impressive family double, Hoy -- or Sir Chris as he can now call himself -- can celebrate the top honour with his mother Carol, who became a Member of Order of the British Empire (MBE).

    Britain's Olympic team won 47 medals in Beijing, led by the cyclists, in the best showing for Britain in a century. They came fourth in the overall medals table.

    Those honoured afresh Wednesday included cyclists Victoria Pendleton, Nicole Cooke, Edward Clancy, Jason Kenny and Rebecca Romero; sailors Ben Ainslie, Philippa Wilson, Sarah Ayton and Sarah Webb; athlete Christine Ohuruogu and canoeist Tim Brabants.

    Ohuruogu, the only British athlete to win gold in a track and field event at the Beijing Olympics, welcomed her MBE. "It is nice to be called the Olympic, world and Commonwealth champion and now to be made an MBE is extra special."

    Paralympic swimnmer Eleanor Simmonds, the youngest person ever on the New Year's Honours List at 14, said: "This year has been a real whirlwind and really a fairy tale ...It's just so amazing."

    Hamilton, who stormed into the record books in November as the youngest champion in Formula One history, said he felt "humbled" by his award.

    "It is the most amazing culmination to what has been quite a year for me," said the 23-year-old. "It is a massive honour and incredible privilege for me to receive an MBE from Her Majesty the Queen," Hamilton said.

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