Three hundred supporters and athletes from the past and present, congregated at the Vale Resort last night (19 September 2008) to celebrate the successes of athletics in Wales, at The Welsh Athletics Annual Award and Hall of Fame Dinner
The sporting prowess of Berwyn Price, Iwan Thomas and Kirsty Wade was honoured in a ceremony that witnessed the all-time greats of Welsh athletics rubbing shoulders with the stars of tomorrow.
The three athletes became the second wave of inductees to be admitted into the Hall of Fame, which also features Lynn Davies, Colin Jackson, Tanni-Grey Thompson, Steve Jones and John Disley, who were celebrated in last year’s inaugural ceremony.
Dame Mary Peters, the 1970 Commonwealth and 1972 Olympic pentathlon champion, attended the event as guest of honour and presented the Lifetime Achievement Award to Lynette Harries. An international athlete, former Welsh Champion, a top graded judge and referee, and now chairperson for numerous Welsh athletic bodies; Lynette has played a significant part in the development of athletics in Wales for 50 years and exemplifies what athletics is all about.
The star studded event, which also marked the 50th anniversary of the Commonwealth Games being held in Wales, saw Britain’s number one discus thrower, Philippa Roles, rewarded with Female Athlete of the Year and Beijing Olympic 200m finalist, Christian Malcolm, scoop the award for Male Athlete of the Year. Matt Newman, Chief Executive Officer of Welsh Athletics, explained the thinking behind the evening: “After the success of last year’s Hall of Fame event, we wanted to continue to honour the legends of Welsh Athletics, while at the same time acknowledge the stars of today and the unsung heroes working across our club network. Last night saw a celebration of these three areas in a magnificent setting. The stars of the ’58 Commonwealth and Empire Games were also recognised which added a wonderful extra dimension to the evening. “
Two of Wales’ up and coming stars of the future were also celebrated for their achievements this year with Cardiff discus star Brett Morse picking up the men’s junior athlete award and Wrexham’s multi-eventer Megan Rogers the women’s junior award.
The unsung heroes of Welsh Athletics were also recognised in the “Heidsieck & Co Monopole Champagne Club Awards”. The winners were thanked for their behind the scenes efforts, from enlisting youngsters into the sport, integrating disability sport at club level and handling photo finishes and international fixtures.
While 17 awards were presented throughout the evening, just five winners will progress to a UK wide ceremony staged by UK Athletics.
- Swansea Harriers AC for Track and Field Club of the Year. With championship success both on track and across other disciplines of the sport, Swansea has now developed into Wales’ largest athletics club and looks set to dominate in years to come.
- Alex Donald for Young Volunteer of the Year. Having joined Cardiff AAC as a young athlete, Alex has shown an enormous amount of commitment to the club in recent years. In his coaching role in the club he has developed a junior training group as well as advising a number of senior athletes.
- Ken Bennett for Services to Officiating (Swansea Harriers AC). Ken has had a dramatic impact on the development of officiating at club, regional and national levels and continues to encourage existing officials as well as actively recruiting and up-skilling new officials.
- Glyn Davies for Podium Coach of the Year. A Level 4 athletics coach, Glyn dedicates a great deal of time to Wrexham AAC. Predominantly concentrating on sprint events, he has developed a number of athletes who have enjoyed podium success throughout 2008.
- Dyfed Schools Athletics Association & Carmarthen and District Harriers AC for Athletics Partnership of the Year. A relationship that spans all disciplines of the sport including cross country, indoor/sports hall athletics as well as track and field. The alliance has been mutually beneficial and accounts for the unparalleled success enjoyed by both organisations over the last 20 years.
For more information please contact Clive Williams on 07974 176229 or Sarah Mogford at the Sports Council for Wales on 029 2033 8273 / firstname.lastname@example.org
SOUTH WEST WALES
- Track and Field Club of the Year – Swansea Harriers Athletics Club
- Junior Club of the Year – Carmarthen and District Harriers
- Club Volunteer of the Year – George Williams, Swansea Harriers Athletics Club
- Services to Officiating – Ken Bennett, Swansea Harriers Athletics Club
- Coaching Development – Andrew Jenkins, Swansea Harriers Athletics Club
- Athletics Partnership of the Year – Dyfed Schools Athletics Association
- Newcomer to Officiating – Joanne Davis
- Off Track Official of the Year – Terry Alcock
- Welsh Female Athlete of the Year – Philippa Roles
SOUTH EAST WALES
- Inclusivity Club of the Year – Cwmbran Harriers
- Young Volunteer of the Year – Alex Donald, Cardiff Athletics Club
- Club Development – Richard Tidball, Bridgend Athletics Club
- Track and Field Official of the Year – Roger Grindle, Cardiff Athletics Club
- Local Authority of the Year – Cardiff AAC
- Welsh Male Athlete of the Year – Christian Malcolm
- Welsh Male Junior Athlete of the Year – Brett Morse
- Off Track Club of the Year – Menai Track and Field
- Participation Coach of the Year – Steve Walker, Wrexham AAC
- Performance Coach of the Year – Glyn Davies, Wrexham AAC
- Podium Coach of the Year – Arwyn Davies
- Welsh Female Junior Athlete of the Year – Megan Rogers
Welsh Athletics is grateful for the support received from Direct Source (UK) Ltd of Taffs Well; Brecon Carreg; S4C; Cardiff City Council; Tinopolis; BBC Wales; ITV Wales and their marketing partners Blacksheep in the organisation of the dinner.