THE best and most talented sportsfolk in our area were honoured at the annual Wigtownshire Sports Personality of the year awards on Friday.
Junior Female - 1st, Zoe Thomson; 2nd, Hannah McMillan and Sarah McIntyre.
Junior Male - 1st, Ryan Hardie; 2nd, Robbie Thomson.
Junior Team - 1st, Galloway Pony Club Novice Team; 2nd, Galloway Pony Club Open Team; 3rd, Stranraer Stingrays.
Senior Team - 1st, Castle Kennedy Bowling Club Ladies Four; 2nd, Stranraer Ice Rink Curling Club - Maxwell Trophy.
Coach / Administrator - 1st, Janine Spice.
Disabled - Ann Baynes; 2nd, Dave Hesford.
Services to Sport - 1st, Galloway Football Fair.
Senior Female - 1st, Vicki Adams.
Senior Male - 1st, Fraser Wilson; 2nd, David Kelly; 3rd, Steven Broll.
NOMINEES: Hannah McMillan - Showjumping, Zoe Thomson - Baton Twirling and Sarah McIntyre - Showjumping.
Hannah McMillan - Showjumping
Hannah has only been competing at affiliated level (BSJA) since October 2009 when she bought her new pony Laraghmore Martin (Dennis). The Blue Chip qualifiers were the first of the qualifiers Hannah competed in and were held at Rowallan Activity Centre, Ayrshire. The courses were built to BSJA standards and the first round in the Sapphire class was 1m, increasing to 1.10 m in the jump off. Hannah went clear in the first round and was selected to go 3rd in the jump off and went straight into first place. They stayed in 1st place until the very last rider when they were beaten into second by one hundredth of a second. 1st and 2nd placed riders qualified for the BSJA Blue Chip Sapphire Championships in Hartpury last April and Hannah finished 5th after the three round class with the final height being 1.10m.
Hannah also qualified for the BSJA Scope Festival of Showjumping at Stafford County showground 29th August to 4th September 2010. The main event for Hannah was the Newcomers where qualification was held throughout the country and required 4 double clears to be achieved by the end of April with the height being 1m in the first round, increasing to 1.10 in the jump off. Hannah achieved her four double clears in plenty of time and progressed to the second rounds for which you can compete in any 4 out of 10 qualifiers. The 2nd round qualifiers are over three rounds starting at 1.10m increasing to 1.20 in the 2nd round and 1.25m in the 3rd round and she duly qualified at Rowallan Activity Centre. She also achieved 4 double clears in the Foxhunter qualifiers for 2011 (1.10m in the first round, increasing to 1.20 in the jump off) but unfortunately is too old to compete in ponies in 2011.
In the other Scope Championships Qualifiers Hannah also qualified for the 1m Progressive, 1.05m Adventurer and 1.15m Members Cup.
At the BSJA Scope Championships Hannah qualified for the final of the 1.05m adventurer out of over 100 competitors as well as the Newcomers Championship, narrowly missing out on the Members Cup Championship (She did not compete in the progressive championship due to a clash with the other classes).
The highlight of Hannah’s year was the Royal Highland Show. Twelve qualifiers were held throughout the country last spring with the top three qualifying for the Royal Highland Show in June. Hannah qualified for the Liz Fox JC Championship which she won and the 148 cms championship where she finished 4th.She also represented Scotland at the Home Pony Internationals held in Ireland and Wales.
Hannah came second in the Scottish Pony/Young Masters Performance League 2010 in the 148cm section on Dennis last year.
Finally at the end of the season Hannah was awarded the Pat Slack Cup for the most improved Scottish 148cm rider and the rider who in the judges opinion would make the most successful transition onto horses. Since getting her horse Tilly in September 2010 Hannah has already qualified for the BSJA Scope Festival Adventurer and Members Cup and has her 4 double clears for Newcomers which in horses is 1.10m in the first round increasing to 1.20 in the jump off.
Zoe Thomson - Baton Twirling
Zoe is 8 years old and she has been a member of the Mini Major Twirlettes for four years. Sarah has been successful locally. In May 2010 she qualified for the British Baton Twirling Sports Association Individual Championships at Portsmouth having qualified by winning at Cumbernauld. Zoe, who was 7 at the time, won the British Championships for the Poise section in her age group out of a class of 54 athletes. This is the first time that there has been a BBTSA Champion in Wigtownshire since 1994 when Zoe’s trainer, Kirsty McGowan and Keriann Petrie won a Duo Championship.
Sarah McIntyre - Showjumping
Sarah has been riding since she was 6, having progressed through four ponies. All she ever wanted to do was showjumping. After getting Tommy when was only 4 she decided to concentrate purely on bringing him on to showjump and register him with the British Show Jumping Association, better known as the B.S.J.A. She did this in September 2010 and hasn’t looked back since.
t has taken many hours of lessons and training to get him to the level they are at now but with her determination and his ability they have gelled into “quite a pair”.
Her greatest achievement to date has to be in November 2010 when she attended the Scottish Pony of the Year competition at Ingliston Equestrian Centre at Bishopton, Glasgow where she competed over 3 days in classes with over 90 competitors in them. She achieved a 1st, a 2nd and a 3rd in her classes, placing her with the most points over the weekend to win “The leading rider award”. She also won the Scottish Leading rider trophy which had been won previously by Scott Brash.
Since then she has gone on to qualify for various major competitions such as the Blue Chip finals in Gloucestershire, The Pony Club Dengie qualifier in Warwickshire & Scope in September of this year.
At the moment she is concentrating on Qualifying for The Royal Highland Show in June in Edinburgh.
It takes hours of washing, cleaning & polishing to prepare her pony and herself for these competitions which are generally every weekend.
Sarah only has until November of this year on her pony Tommy as she will then be too old to compete on ponies so it’s full steam ahead for the rest of 2011.
Sarah is a member of Stranraer & District Riding Club, Machars Riding Club & Galloway branch of the Pony Club.
NOMINEES: Robbie Thomson - Football and Ryan Hardie - Football
Robbie Thomson - Football
Fifteen year old Robbie who lives in Minnigaff and attends Douglas Ewart High School started playing for Galloway Thistle Youth Football Cub when he was five years old and got his chance to go to a professional Club when he was twelve and signed for Kilmarnock. Following a season and a half training and playing for the Rugby Park youths Robbie then followed his older brother Dean when he transferred to Queen of the South where he is still playing in the under 16 team. The youngster who plays in midfield or on the wing has been selected and has played for Dumfries and Galloway Schools Under 16s for the past two seasons. Robbie’s ambitions are all about football and he would like one day to become a professional football player.
Ryan Hardie - Football
Ryan was asked to have a trial for Rangers in 2009 and was signed to the under 13 team shortly afterwards. Ryan travels for training twice a week to Murray Park, Glasgow. Ryan has a natural ability when it comes to playing football and played for Wigtownshire and Dumfries & Galloway primary teams. As a result of his training at Murray Park with Rangers coaches he has learnt much more about football that would be possible in the local area. Training at Rangers is not just about football skills but includes life skills - how to eat, behave and to work hard on schoolwork as well as football.
Ryan has played for his school, county and district at Primary level. Ryan won player of the year with the Wigtownshire team and helped the Dumfries & Galloway Team win the Scottish Cup. Ryan also played with Rangers in Holland at the United Youth Cup 2009 and they won this tournament playing against teams such as Ajaz, Blackburn Rovers, etc.
Ryan has scored many goals playing each week for Rangers and although he has to travel to Glasgow every week he has still maintained a very high standard with his school work and has remained committed to his training.
NOMINEES: Galloway Pony Club Novice Team, Galloway Pony Club Open Team and Stranraer Stingrays
Galloway Pony Club Open Team
Four senior members of Galloway Pony Club travelled to Ingliston Equestrian centre at Bishopton on Sunday 21st November 2010 to compete in the “Eglinton Hunt Branch” Team Show jumping competition.
The Team consisted of Jenna Stead on Aird Lipstick, Kate McDonald on Peaches, Leah Forsyth on DJ & Sarah McIntyre on Logan Lightening.
The team had to jump two rounds, one round at 1 metre and the next round at 1.10 metres. There were 8 teams in the class and the “Galloway “girls came 3rd.
Galloway Pony Club Novice Team
An early start in the morning meant an over night stay for several Galloway Branch Pony Club members making the long journey to Ingliston Equestrian Centre at Bishopton near Glasgow to take part in the Pony Club Area Qualifiers for the prestigious Pony Club Championships later in the year. This competition is for pony club teams and individuals run over two rounds with a timed jump off for those double clear. Only the best riders are chosen for the teams to have the best chance of qualifying for the championship so the standard of jumping is extremely high and the pressure is intense. This is the ‘Olympics’ of the Pony Club year.
The 90cm novice team consisting of Kate Macdonald on Lady Uleta, Kate McCornick on Esker Diamond, Jenna Stead on Easter Cruise and Katie Marr on The Quiet Man were in equal first place after their first round. Torrential rain greeted the second round but the girls held their nerve and finished on a total of 8 faults to take 2nd place and a championship place. This was a fantastic result and the first time a team from Galloway has made it to the championships.
The members train hard; get up at all hours, early mornings, late nights (unsociable times). Competitors always have to travel far to attend swimming competitions. They fundraise to support themselves. Members of the club have taken part in national competitions - Scottish National Open Swimming Competition at Tollcross in Glasgow - and take part at West of Scotland District level as well as various competitions throughout the Central Belt and elsewhere.
NOMINEES: Castle Kennedy Bowling Club - Ladies Triples and Four, Stranraer Ice Rink Curling Club - Maxwell TrophyCastle Kennedy Bowling Club Ladies Four
The winning of the 2010 Scottish Women’s Fours Championship by Castle Kennedy Bowling Club Ladies was a considerable achievement in that they first of all had to compete against all the other clubs in Dumfries and Galloway and then go on to the finals at Northfield, Ayr, to compete against the winners from all the other districts in Scotland. As Scottish champions they will represent the country in the British Isle Championships later this year. It must be recognised that this is a considerable achievement for Wigtownshire and more especially for a small club like Castle Kennedy and greatly enhances the reputation of this area in the sporting world.
The team members are Patricia Henderson, Moira Cronie, Vivien Taylor and Kathleen Stevenson.
The committee and members of Castle Kennedy Bowling Club would like to nominate the seven ladies of the Club for the award of Senior Team of the Year due to their outstanding success achieved in 2010 - Peggy, Sheila, June, Trish, Kathleen, Vivien and Moira.
Following on from the previous year when the Ladies Triple of Peggy, Sheila and June won the Scottish title they had the honour of representing Scotland at the British Isle Championships at Woking where they again triumphed and returned British Isles champions 2010. Also the ladies team of Trish, Kathleen, Moira and Vivien won through the Regional, the Scottish finals at Northfield, Ayr and won the Scottish Fours Title, and will now represent Scotland at the British Isle Championships this year in June.
Peggy has been selected after a trial for the full Scottish International team and plays in Wales in June. From a small rural club which has eleven lady members the club feel that this is a great achievement.
Stranraer Ice Rink Curling Club - Maxwell Cup
The Maxwell Trophy is a national competition organised by the Royal Caledonian Curling Club played between ice rinks. Each ice rink selects three male teams to play against other ice rinks. Stranraer Ice Rink topped their group of Kilmarnock, Ayr and Lockerbie; dropping just a single game on the way to the Semi-finals. In the semi-final against Forfar, Stranraer won all three games and went on to play the final against Murrayfield on their home ice. In the final, Stranraer won two games, drew the third and lifted the trophy.
Stranraer Ice Rink does not use the same three teams throughout the competition but all twelve players on the finals day had played in the qualifying stages. While other ice rinks are represented in the competition by teams with players from the same club, Stranraer mixes players from different clubs - offering more players the opportunity to play in the competition. The players who lifted the Maxwell Trophy are members from seven different clubs who play their Curling at Stranraer, but when playing in the Maxwell they play for each other as representatives of SIRCC to great effect.
The players were: Hammy McMillan, Philip Wilson, Hugh Aitken, Hamilton McMillan, Fraser Hare, Neil Fyfe, Trevor Harrison, Andy Ross, Hugh Kirkpatrick, John Munro, Paul Soriani and Donald McColm
COACH / ADMINISTRATOR
NOMINEE: Janine Spice - Netball
Janine has been instrumental in setting up the Galloway Netball Club. She coaches the school team at the Douglas Ewart - the Under 17 team - with no help at all from the staff. She coaches the Galloway Fireballs (junior section of the Galloway Netball team) and this year has started up and coached a Dumfries and Galloway U17 team (team members made up from Galloway and Dumfries) to compete in the regional league (a first for Dumfries & Galloway thus gaining recognition in the rest of Scotland). Janine’s efforts were recognised by Netball Scotland for the regional team in their recent newsletter to members. Recently she has also started Saturday morning netball for primary schools in conjunction with Active Schools at the Merrick. In addition to all this Janine coaches and plays for the adult team. All this is in her own time and done with a positive spin on every situation.
NOMINEES: Dave Hesford - Angling and Ann Baynes - Curling.
David moved to Stranraer from Doncaster around twenty years ago. He moved his boat to Portpatrick and joined Sealink Sea Angling Club. After being voted on to the committee he went on to become Vice Chairman and over the seasons until the Club was disbanded in 2008 he won various Club trophies. In two seasons he won all six trophies awarded by Sealink SAC - the Championship Trophy, All Night Trophy, Specimen Fish Trophy and Most Fish Trophy. Dave also won the South West Federation Record and Specimen Fish Awards for fish submitted to the committee.
Fourteen years ago he asked a party from Sealink SAC to travel to Bridlington to take part in a new Fishing Festival over a weekend. This turned out to be a complete shambles and on meeting the organiser of the Council, Paul Rogerman, we had a meeting with one or two of his team and passed on our ideas of how the Festival should be run including a full set of rules, Fish sizes and spaces between competitors.
Paul was sent complete copies of Irish, Scottish and SW Scotland Federation rules and details. We also suggested that he contacted the Angling Press to seek a sponsor. Total Sea Fishing took up the offer and now helps to run the competition and compile final results.
David and Raymond Smith have been at each of the following weekend Festivals which has grown over the years and is now a European Shore Festival with around 2,000 entries and prize money of £25,000 with the overall winner taking home up to £7,000. Prizes go don to 27th place each day.
Unfortunately David was unable to attend in February due to losing a leg in October 2010 but with determination he was out on his boat three or four times before it came out of the water for the winter. Dave was also out on the beaches while on crutches. With a little assistance he was still able to catch a few fish. He is spending his time preparing his boat for the water in the very near future, and with help he will manage to get afloat again. Dave is looking forward to getting afloat again and fishing from the beach when it is too rough to get afloat. A headstrong and determined person Dave is a good candidate for Disabled Sportsman.
Ann is a wheelchair curler and has been curling at Stranraer Ice rink for over 2 years. Although Wheelchair curling began in Europe in the late 1990s, it took Ann’s arrival to have a wheelchair curler playing regularly at Stranraer.
Wheelchair curling is an adaptation of curling for athletes with a disability affecting their lower limbs or gait. Wheelchair curlers play with the same curling stones and on the same ice as regular curlers, though the stones are thrown from a stationary wheelchair.
Most wheelchair curling starts with a curling club being open to the idea of wheelchair users participating in their activities and Ann is a member of Galloway Ladies and Castle Kennedy Curling clubs. She can also be seen playing in many competitions which she enters as an individual player. Ann is a welcome addition to Stranraer Ice Rink thanks to her enthusiasm and obvious love for the game of curling evidenced by her constant smile when on the ice.
She is a great ambassador for wheelchair curlers in general and the hope is that she acts as a vanguard for other wheelchair curlers coming to the fore.
SERVICES TO SPORT
NOMINEE: Galloway Football Fair
This Annual event is celebrating its tenth year in existence and is now regarded as one of the leading, if not in fact the top one of its kind, in the South of Scotland. Following some early teething problems the tournament which is run for youngsters between the ages of six and twelve has enjoyed continued success since it started in 2002 and in fact has evolved over that period to become a very important date on the youth footballing calendar.
The two day event is run at Blairmount Park on the May Bank Holiday Weekend and every year the weather has some bearing on the proceedings one way or another. It seems that in alternate years that those attending the tournament are either hit by a heat wave or extremely wet weather….Fingers crossed…It was nearly a washout on the first day last year.
The success of the event which is run by Galloway Thistle in conjunction with Newton Stewart Football Club has had a total of 6,700 youngsters attending over the years and has had some illustrious people presenting their participation trophies which are of such a high standard that they come back every year to be presented with until of course they are overage.
Professional players Kevin Kyle, Alan Jenkins and Stranraer Manager Keith Knox, Stranraer Chairman Alex Connor, MP Russell Brown and Councillor Andrew Woods are among the many people who have presented the trophies over the years. Many people from both Football Clubs and some even without Club connections have been involved in the event over the years which enjoys tremendous local support.
Three people in particular have played a most important part in ensuring the organisation and running of the event and of its continuation from year to year - Alex Whiteside and Rosie Johnstone, Treasurer, from Galloway Thistle and John McNaught, Secretary of Newton Stewart Football Club.
There will be special celebrations at this year’s event in two weeks time and they will be thoroughly enjoyed by these three people in particular as a proud symbol of what hard work, commitment and dedication to sport can achieve.
NOMINEE: Vicki Adams - Curling
Vicki is coming to the end of the curling season with an incredible record this year. She was in the winning rink, playing second stones, which won the Scottish Junior Ladies title. The rink then went on to represent Scotland in the World Junior curling competition where they won the Gold Medal. This was Vicki’s third Scottish title and also her third World Junior title.
Vicki travelled to Turkey as part of Team GB Curling Rink to take part in the World University Games. She was again playing second stones. The GB team were successful in the round robin stages of the competition, progressing to the final stages, beating the Russians in the final to win the Gold Medal.
Vickie and her rink competed in the Scottish Ladies finals and managed to win the Scottish Ladies title. Three of the players in the winning rink played in the successful junior rink. This record has never been achieved before.
While I am writing this Vicki is in Denmark representing Scotland in the World Ladies curling Championships.
Vicki has achieved so much this year in the sport she loves. She is very fortunate in being able to travel extensively to compete for her country and is an excellent ambassador for the sport and country.
NOMINEES: Fraser Wilson - Rally Driver, Steven Broll - Co Driver, David Kelly - Bowling
Fraser Wilson and Steven Broll
After suffering a serious crash in 2009 Fraser and his co-driver Steven Broll came back into the 2010 season by coming 3rd in the first rally of the Class 2 Scottish Championships at Inverness (the Snowman Rally). Fraser then went on to win the Border Counties in Jedburgh, Jim Clark Reivers Rally in Duns, Scottish in Dumfries and Merrick Forest Stages in Wigtownshire. Breakdowns meant no points in the Granite City in Aberdeen or Speyside Stages in Elgin. This left Fraser going into the last rally of the season needing to finish on the podium, which he did by coming third in the Colin McRae Forest Stages at Perth. This podium finish meant that Fraser won the Class 2 Scottish Championships in 2010. Fraser and Steven do all the work on their Vauxhall Nova rally car themselves.
David won Ayr Open Bowling Tournament in 2010 successfully defending his 2009 success. This was also the third time in four years that he had won the tournament which attracts hundreds of entries from many parts of Scotland. Some years ago David was a member of a local threesome that won the Under 14s Scottish Triples.
David has since represented Scotland at both Junior and Senior level playing some of his international games abroad. Throughout his bowling career David has won many Wigtownshire titles.
SportScotland / SALSC: Local Service to Sport Award
Bobby has been nominated for this award for sporting activates over many years.
Bobby played football for Stranraer FC for a number of years, notching up 541 games for the Club, going on to coach the youth of the Shire and pass on his footballing skills.
In 2010 Bobby organised a Gala Day for all Stranraer FC footballers past and present. A major talking point of the event was a display of photographs of the Club’s players over the years.
Bobby is a dedicated fundraiser, taking part in marathons both near and far.
He is also a keen bowler, currently President of his local Bowling Green committee - Kirkcolm - and a past president of Kirkcolm Community Council.
Bobby is currently involved in organising a visit to Stranraer from the supporters club of the Dutch 2010 League champions - FC Twente. A party of 76 is travelling across to Stranraer on 21st and 22nd May to arrange coaching sessions with over 500 local children.
Bowler, footballer and fundraising marathon runner - a worthy recipient of the sportscotland / SALSC Local Service to Sport Awards.