Score Article re Sport Moray Accolades

SCORE DEC 18 – Moravian Accolades at Sport Moray Awards

MOR has been affiliated to Sport Moray, the local sports council, for many years and among many things, Sport Moray organises an annual sports awards evening in late Autumn every year.  As a club we have been reasonably successful in getting the right people recognised at this event and not just for competing.  People like Douglas Murray and Mike Rodgers have both twice been awarded awards for their extraordinary contribution to the administration and promotion of Orienteering and last year Lil Kenyon won the Schools Volunteer Award for the excellent work she does in delivering coaching and co-ordinating all the Schools festivals.  This year, however, was very much about performance results and we felt that, because we had had both the British and Scottish Championships close by that we had some pretty strong candidates.  The classes were very competitive, with as many as 10 nominees in each from a wide range of sports; in particular, figure skating seems to be growing.

The awards evening was on Mon 30 Oct, immediately after our Moray MEGA Mix weekend and the nominees plus a few more waited with anticipation.  Early in the evening, Isobel Howard won the Girl’s Junior Sports Award (under 14) having won the British Championships (both individual and relay), Scottish Orienteering League, and had a very impressive debut representing Scotland and not long after, it was time for the Junior Team award (age 12 and over).  As the nominations were being read out, several of our team had already ascended to the stage as part of Athletics and Cross Country teams, so it was left to Isobel walk up again for the MOR Team nomination.  Amazingly, we won that as well and the others slid across the stage to join Isobel for the award.  Once again, success at British and Scottish Championships were also supported by how well the older juniors volunteer within the club and nurture the younger juniors, and that we are getting closer than ever to winning the Jamie Stevenson Trophy……..  At half time, Hannah Miley, the Scottish swimmer gave an excellent 15-minute chat about her experiences competing at the highest level and how important it is that it is YOUR targets that matter, not the outside expectation (especially media).  She is very small for such a successful international swimmer.

In the second half, we had hopes for a winner of the Heather Stanning award for Intermediate Female (14 to 17), which Mairi Weir won last year, but this was won by an excellent Figure Skater.  2 out of 3 wasn’t bad when there are about 12 categories overall!  Generally, we have been successful in getting adults recognised for all round contribution and juniors for performance; however, having seen nominations for the Veterans Performance award this year, I think we will look harder at that area for future opportunities as well.  The awards are always an inspirational evening hearing about so many varying sports and excellence with some people overcoming significant adversity.  Also, one boy, involved in Water Sports and nominated in the Intermediate category, had won his club a £30,000 power boat by winning a competition earlier in the year!

There are many ways to get the sport and your club recognised more widely and events like these really help boost the publicity, so if you are not looking at it already, make sure you nominate the right people this year, especially as the British Championships was nearby.  And don’t just focus on the juniors.