Berhane voted Africa's top cyclist
Eritrea's Natnael Berhane was elected African Cyclist of the Year for 2012 on Tuesday by a panel chaired by five-times Tour de France champion Bernard Hinault.
The 21-year-old Berhane, who is set to make his professional debut with French outfit Europcar in 2013, finished ahead of South Africa's Reinhardt Janse Van Rensburg, with Moroccan cyclist Adil Jelloul third in the voting.
"The trophy created this year by the Gabonese (Tropicale Amassa Bongo race) organisers rewards the African cyclist who made the greatest impact during the season especially in events on the African continent," read a statement.
"Natnael Berhane left his mark on people for his consistency," it said, referring to his three titles at the African championships in November, his triumph at the Tour of Algeria and his victory at the Tour de Chablais, a French amateur classic.