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Canadian Mikael Kingsbury celebrates a gold medal at the Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympic Games on Feb. 12, 2018.JONATHAN HAYWARD/The Canadian Press

Freestyle ski star Mikaël Kingsbury has won the 2018 Lou Marsh Trophy as Canada’s athlete of the year.

He’s the first freestyle skier to win the award.

The winner of the Toronto Star award is selected annually by a panel of sports journalists from across the country.

Kingsbury, from Deux-Montagnes, Que., won his first Olympic gold medal at the Pyeongchang Games and dominated the World Cup moguls circuit.

He won two Crystal Globes at the end of the last World Cup season as overall men’s freestyle points leader and overall men’s moguls leader.

He kicked off the current season last week with a win in Ruka, Finland. It was his 50th career World Cup victory.

Other finalists included figure skater Kaetlyn Osmond, golfer Brooke Henderson, Edmonton Oilers captain Connor McDavid and curler Kaitlyn Lawes.

“It is a great honour to receive this award. I have the greatest respect for the extraordinary athletes who have received it before me,” Kingsbury said in a statement. “It is with immense pride and much humility that I accept this award, which has paid tribute to numerous Olympians that have left their mark on the history of the Olympic Games and the world of Olympic sport.”

The Lou Marsh Trophy has been awarded annually since 1936 with a three-year hiatus during the Second World War.

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