Ballyclare rider Rea won the World Superbike championship for a record-breaking sixth time in a row in October.
After sports pundit Liam Beckett described the SPOTY awards as having “lost all credibility,” Mrs Foster told the BBC’s Good Morning Ulster programme she backed that assessment.
“Can I just say how much I agree with Liam Beckett on the Jonathan Rea issue,” she said.
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“I think it’s an absolute disgrace and, like him, I shall not be watching Sports Personality of the Year this year.
“For me, Jonathan Rea is the sports personality of the year.”
The shortlist of six contenders has been announced as: cricketer Stuart Broad; jockey Hollie Doyle; boxer Tyson Fury; Formula 1 driver Lewis Hamilton; Liverpool footballer Jordan Henderson and snooker star Ronnie O’Sullivan.
Voting will be open to the public during the SPOTY programme which is being broadcast live from the Media City studies in Salford on Sunday, December 20.
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