A spectacular year of local sport celebrated at the Suffolk Sports Awards
Posted: Tue, 20 Nov 2018 15:46
The annual Suffolk Sports Awards were held at Kesgrave Hall last week where a number of accolades were handed out to a series of well-deserving recipients.
The event, now in its 13th year, celebrates sporting talent across Suffolk and recognises those who work tirelessly behind the scenes for the love of their sport. This year, over 200 guests attended from clubs, schools, local authorities, charities and other organisations and a number of individuals and groups were honoured for their sporting achievements during the last year.
The Suffolk Sports Awards were delivered by Suffolk Sport in collaboration with Harrod Sport, the UK's leading manufacturer of football goal posts, hockey goals, tennis posts and general sports ground equipment. The event was also supported by BBC Radio Suffolk, with presenters Stephen Foster and Graeme McLoughlin hosting the event.
A total of 10 awards were presented on the night, including two special industry-voted awards: the Lifetime Achievement Award and the Elena Baltacha Award.
British Telemark skier Jasmin Taylor was among the winners at the prize-giving ceremony and was presented with the prestigious Sports Personality of the Year award for her incredible achievements over the last year on the FIS World Cup Circuit. Jasmin finished the 2017/18 season ranked fourth in the overall World Cup standings and with 22 world cup podiums already in her career, she is the best performing Telemark skier to date.
16 year old speedway star Drew Kemp was awarded Young Sports Personality of the Year and trampoline coach Nicki Weller received the Unsung Hero award, while Bill Tancred MBE was bestowed the Lifetime Achievement award for his tremendous contributions to sport as an Olympic athlete, an international discus coach and an academic professor.
Sidegate Primary School and Copleston High School won Primary School of the Year and Secondary School of the Year respectively, for demonstrating innovative use of their PE & Sport Premium and encouraging pupils of all ages and abilities to take part in sport and physical activity. Kesgrave Kruisers, a free all-inclusive running group with over 100 regular members, received the Club of the Year award.
Anna Street, from Bury St Edmunds, received the Elena Baltacha award for her commitment to sport in the face of adversity and guests learned of her remarkable experience in the Challenge Venice Triathlon last year, where she crashed her bike after 68 miles but rode another 44 miles to the finish line with two fractures to her pelvis.
It was also an extremely successful evening for Ipswich Basketball Club, with the club and its representatives shortlisted across five different categories. Head coach Nick Drane was awarded Coach of the Year and the Senior Women's Team took home the Team of the Year trophy after a historic treble-winning season, going undefeated in all games to win the National League, National Playoffs and the National Cup.
Tracey Loynds, Chair of Suffolk Sport Board, said "Every year I am overwhelmed by the achievements of the winners and nominees. The Suffolk Sports Awards aim to recognise the great successes that Suffolk athletes have had on an international, national and local stage as well as those who make a lifetime commitment to local sport. Each and every contribution, in its own way, is vital to the health and wellbeing of sport in our county."
John Clough, Director of Suffolk Sport said: "It was a fantastic evening celebrating the great local sporting talent that we are so fortunate to have here in Suffolk. The Sports Awards provides the perfect opportunity to recognise the achievements of Suffolk's athletes, clubs, schools and coaches, as well as the volunteers who dedicate their hours to support them along the way".
He added: "We are very grateful to our headline sponsor Harrod Sport, our media partner BBC Radio Suffolk and each of the individual award sponsors, without whom, this special event wouldn't be possible. On behalf of Suffolk Sport I would like to congratulate the award winners and nominees, all of whom help to contribute to our vision of making Suffolk England's Most Active County".
The full list of winners and runners up were as follows:
Harrod Sport Sports Personality of the Year Award: Jasmin Taylor (winner), Zoe Newson (runner up), Harriet Welham (runner up)
Places Leisure Young Sports Personality of the Year Award: Drew Kemp (winner), Esther Little (runner up), Ruby Hunt (runner up)
BBC Radio Suffolk Unsung Hero Award: Nicki Weller (winner), Shaun Platten (runner up), Tony Adams (runner up)
Suffolk Coastal and Waveney District Councils Team of the Year Award: Ipswich Basketball Senior Women's Team (winner), Suffolk LTA Men's Summer County Cup Team (runner up), Mildenhall Fen Tigers (runner up)
Abbeycroft Leisure Club of the Year Award: Kesgrave Kruisers (winner), Ipswich Basketball Club (runner up), Bury Bicycle Collective (runner up)
The Hub: Sport Science at the University of Suffolk Coach of the Year Award: Nick Drane (winner), Gareth Carr (runner up), Hayley Rigby (runner up)
Abbeycroft Leisure Primary School of the Year Award: Sidegate Primary School (winner), East Bergholt CEVC Primary School (runner up), Morland Church of England Primary School (runner up)
Ipswich Borough Council Secondary School of the Year Award: Copleston High School (winner), Kesgrave High School (runner up), Farlingaye High School (runner up)
Active Waveney and Sentinel Leisure Lifetime Achievement Award: Bill Tancred (winner)
Elena Baltacha Award: Anna Street (winner)