Bedford Sports Awards 2013 nominees - part 1

Bedford Sports Awards 2013 have atttracted a big entry with more than 130 nominees.

By The Newsroom
Monday, 9th December 2013, 10:05 am
Bedford Sports Awards 2012
Bedford Sports Awards 2012

A panel of judges have had their say and the winners will be announced at the awards night at Bedford Corn Exchange on Monday, December 9.

The evening, a celebration of Bedford sport, will feature guest appearances by Olympic gold medal winner Etienne Stott, Team GB handball captain Bobby White and Bedford Blues captain James Pritchard.

The event is staged by Sport Bedford and Bedford Borough Council Sports Development Unit.

The nominees are as follows:

Sports Club of the Year

Bedford and County Athletic Club

Bedford and County Athletic Club have increased membership to 574 and have seen new officials and new coaches join the club. The club offers opportunities to all levels of performer and has representation from athletes at local, regional, national and international level. The club memebers currently include a Senior GB Athlete, an U20 European 100m finalist, three England U20 athletes, one England U20 Champion and have won 13 medals at the national championships with 14 athletes ranked in UK top ten.

Bedford Athletic Rugby Union Football Club

The squad enjoyed a successful season culminating in a promotion and return to National League Rugby. Their junior (colts) side were crowned undefeated champions of the Hertfordshire Middlesex League. The Colts have built a strong partnership with the Blues, providing professional coaching qualifications and a pathway to Senior League Rugby.

Bedford Mighty Eagles – Dodgeball

The club had a successful first season in the UK National Dodgeball Leagues. The men’s first team made an undefeated debut to the season, winning Division Two and gaining promotion into National League one. The Ladies team gained promotion to the Women’s Premier League and won the UK National Championships. The Eagles have established good links with the local university and schools which offer exit routes for students.

Bedford Hockey Club

Another successful season in 2012/13 saw both the ladies and men’s 1st teams finishing 2nd in their East Premier divisions, narrowly missing out on promotion to the National leagues by the nearest of margins. The club’s thriving ‘Back to Hockey’ scheme has helped to growth in membership this year, which has contributed to a 25% increase in memebership since 2010. The academy continues to grow and helps support new coaches, enabling youngsters to fulfil their potential and provide a pathway to senior league hockey.

Bedford Multi Sport Club

The club gives one to one support and training to each individual member of the club. This year the focus has been on running in road racing and cross country multi terrain events with some obstacle events. Many of its members have been supported in every aspect of their preparation and training for races from 5k to the half marathons and marathons in the UK and abroad. Bedford Multi Sport Club was strongly representative in the para category at the Virgin London Marathon.

Bedford Tigers – Rugby League

2013 saw the 1st team finish 2nd in the newly formed East Premier Division. The 2nd team finished top of the East Entry League and went on to be crowned champions winning the East Entry Grand Final against Cambridge Lions. The club continues to support and grow rugby league amongst the juniors, running 10 weeks worth of coaching sessions. They have played a vital role in the formation and running of the first minis rugby league ever in Bedford.

Bedfordshire Roller Girls

The club reached the Semi-finals of the Heartlands East Series Roller Derby and an increase in membership means that there is now an A and B team competing. This growth in membership is a testament to the hard work and management by volunteers from the team. The Bedfordshire Roller Girls are in the process of raising funds to become part of the Women’s Flat Track Derby Association, which is Roller Sports World Wide Governing Body.

Chand Institute of Taekwondo

It has been a strong year for Chand Insitute of Taekwondo and due to their hard work and dedication four students represented the club at the European championships, returning home with four medals, including Gold for Reuben Sokhi for Patterns. For three of these students it was their first European Championships/medal and the club can now boast five European medallists that train with them.

Bedford Modernians – Swimming

A successful year in the pool saw Bedford Modernians represented at local, county, regional and national competitions. Notable club successes include an 85 medal haul (32 golds) at the Biggleswade Open meeting. At the Luton Trophy Gala, Modernians competed against Cambridge, Luton, Aylesbury, Watford and Hemel, coming first overall with 231 points. The club continues to develop which was most strikingly highlighted by the number of competitors qualifying for the Nationals from one in 2010 to seve in 2013!

Priory Sailing Club

It’s been an amazing 2013 year at Priory Sailing Club with the Club having a resurgence of windsurfing. The Club held an instructors training course with seven people obtaining their Windsurfing Instructor (level 2) qualification. This has enabled the Club to offer learning to windsurf opportunities to 6 schools with 72 young people taking part through a 6 week programme. Summer holiday programmes in conjunction with the Borough Council Sports Development Team and free windsurfing coaching on Saturday mornings are offering young people and adults an opportunity to take part in a 12 week programme of activity.

Queens Park Youth Cricket Club

Formed in 2005, the club was established by volunteers from the Mosque, Church and Gudwara to help provide opportunities to bring people together through cricket. This year the club designed and delivered its own “Chance to Shine” schools cricket programme working with three local schools. The Queens Park Youth Cricket Club club held weekly summer training sessions engaging 130 young people ranging in age from 5-16 years. The club has eight junior sides including the only discrete girls’ team in the Beds Youth Cricket League.

Riverside Tennis Club

It’s been a fantastic 2013 for Riverside Tennis Club. The Senior Teams enjoyed a clean sweep in the Summer and Winter County Mens & Ladies Leagues with the Mens A Team side Regional Finalists in AEGON team tennis champs. The Junior teams won six from seven AEGON County Team Tennis and the club were well represented in Mini Tennis with Regional Finalist across all categories. The Club secured Disability Tennis Network status in 2013 and is now running five disability tennis sessions per week, seeing 40 new players.

Trust Gymnastics

Trust Gymnastics trains in Acrobatic Gymnastics and has many County and Regional Champions from 2012/2013 and 5 members that represented the club at National level. The club took a team of 13 gymnasts to a competition in Germany where they gained 3 bronze medals and every gymnast made the to in Germany where they gained 3 bronze medals and every gymnast made the top 10. Trust Gymnastics are looking into starting a Cheerleading class and are currently training coaches.

Rising Star Award

Blake Allsop – Canoe Slalom

Blake is the rising star of Viking Kayak Club. His progress this year has been exceptional, winning five races and gaining promotion from Division 3 to Division 1 in just six months. Blake will train with the GB southern region squad this winter and hopes to join the full UK junior canoe slalom squad next summer. Blake is working hard for an opportunity to try for GB junior selection for 2015.

Laura Dorrell – Rowing

Laura has been working hard on her rowing in 2013, and her hard work has paid off with her being accepted onto the GB Rowing team’s ‘start’ programme which is for athletes with potential for the 2016 and 2020 Olympic Games. Laura trains five times a week on average, two hours each session. Laura aims to attend the GB senior squad trials in November 2014 with a view for competing for a place in a team in summer 2015.

Aston Grant-Williams – Handball

Aston has progressed incredibly well in the space of a short time in the sport of handball. 13 months ago Aston had never played handball and he now represents England at U16 level. Aston is hoping to be selected again for England U16’s and also for the England Handball Academy. As well as studying, Aston trains regularly at Biddenham Upper School under the guidance of senior England internationals including Bobby White, current GB Handball captain.

Nathan Grant-Williams – Handball

Nathan has had quick success in the sport of handball having gone from never playing the game to being selected for England at junior level. As well as studying, Nathan trains at his school, Biddenham Upper School with help and guidance of senior England Internationals including Bobby White, current GB Handball captain. Nathan has aspirations to play for England again and also to be selected for the England Handball Academy.

Saimir Guri – Golf

Saimir has only been playing Golf for five years, but this season has been making waves in international events. Saimir’s rise from club player to a leading-amateur golfer is unprecedented. In the last two years he has dropped his handicap from 28 to 2. Playing in his first televised event, Saimir was one of eight players from England (initial field of thousands) to make it through to the Golf Care Matchplay Championship at the Els Club in Dubai where he finished 3rd.

Joseph Lynton-Green – Taekwondo

Joseph has had success in Taekwondo this year, taking part for the second successive year in the United Kingdom Global Taekwondo Championships in Hertfordshire. For the second year running Joseph won two silver awards for patterns and continuous sparring. Joseph is still aiming to achieve his long term goal of becoming a black belt in the sport.

Luke Saunders – Judo and Sombo

Luke started Judo and Sombo in January 2012. Since then Luke has come on leaps and bounds and is extremely committed to his sports. Luke won gold for Sombo and Judo in the Dutch Open as well as silver in the British Openin Sombo and a bronze in Judo. Luke’s dream is to become a professional martial arts fighter and he aims to continue to travel and compete in Britain and Europe following his recent success in the sport.

Bea Skingsley – Netball

Formerly of the Bedfordshire Netball Academy and Bedford Modern School pupil, Bea Skingsley has been selected for the U19 National Performance Academy. Bea trains hard for her success, putting in 15 hours a week in training. Following her successful trials in Sheffield, Bea (17) will now go on to train and build up momentum in preparation for England U19 Netball match-play in 2014.

Luke Smyth – Canoe Slalom

Luke joined Jackson Kayak Coaching in 2012 and since then has gained a lot of achievements and qualifications. In June 2013 Luke entered the national canoe slalom league, and after much success won the ‘best junior’ trophy. Luke’s amazing season was capped by being awarded ‘Peak Junior’ for the highest ranking male newcomer to the Division one slalom. His dedication and success has seen him selected for the GB canoeing squad for Autumn/ Winter 2013/14.

Sporty Mites Club – Multi Sports

Sporty Mites started in November 2012 as a multi sports coaching programme for young children. It aims to introduce basic skills of agility, balance and coordination to children in a fun way. Initially it provided extra curricular sports for children aged 4-7 years which soon developed to pre-school classes as well for 2-5 year olds. Katherine is a qualified football and hockey coach and works with early years professionals to understand the pre-school physical development requirements.

William Summerfield – Football

From the age of 7 years old William has continued to be selected as an MK Dons Academy player. Last year, aged 16 he signed on as a full time scholar for the club on a 2 year apprenticeship scheme. The club recently recognised his ability by selecting him for a pre-season game against a Tottenham team that included England International Andros Townsend. William is committed to his training, strict diet, and all the responsibilities that come from being a professional player.

Sporting School of the Year

Bedford Academy

Bedford Academy has had a successful year, a pupil being awarded the National Sky Sports Living for Sport Award, the Academy Dodgeball team winning every a county event and winning gold and silver medals in National Kurish Tournaments. As well as this, a number of pupils have been achieving at national, regional and county level.

The school has undergone a huge transformation and now have top class facilities from which they host a range of local community clubs for training and competitions, as well as school competitions. Recently the school have introduced a Junior Sports Leadership Programme through the Bedford and Kempston School Sports Partnership. They also have strong links to Priory Lakes, MK Dons, Sky Sports and NGB initiatives in order to encourage the sporting development and competence of their pupils.

Biddenham International School & Sports College

With over 100 students taking part in extra curricular clubs everyday and having teams represented in every school competition Biddenham have achieved many team successes in sports this year including, athletics, football, tennis and most recently were crowned U16 county girls table tennis winners. Biddenham are currently working hard to achieve a Sport England bid to become a table tennis academy in addition to their existing recognition as a handball academy and they have achieved their School Games Gold Kite Mark for 2012/2013. They have strong links via the Bedford and Kempton School Sport Partnership with local clubs & NGBs and students are offered a number of volunteering opportunities through a strong sports leadership programme.

Harrowden Middle School

Harrowden Middle School has had a successful year at both KS2 and KS3 level in a range of sports including dodgeball, table tennis, football, futsal, rounders, cricket and football. The school have also progressed from a bronze to silver School Games Kite Mark and developed links with the local University in order to offer students an opportunity to gain invaluable experience in education. Harrowden Middle also run a ‘participation for all’ programme which offers every child an extra curricular option and this has increased participation by 50%. The school entered 62 teams into Level 2 inter school competitions.

Margaret Beaufort Middle School

Margaret Beaufort offer a large range of opportunities with A, B & C Teams and a Change for Life Club, in order to maximise participation from pupils. The PE Department are committed to CPD and release a member of staff to work with local lower schools to up skill other teachers. Through good links with the North Bedfordshire School Sport Partnership the department also encourage pupils to take on leadership roles within other schools and in the community. This year some pupils were part of the Yr 8 North Beds Academy Federation Netball Team who were crowned county champions and another pupil was selected to attend the Level 4 National School Games for the Talent Inspiration Programme. The school has also been awarded the Sainsbury’s School Games Gold Kite Mark.

Riseley Lower School

Riseley are committed to a Change for Life programme in order to encourage pupils to take part in physical activity and they have been awarded a Silver School Games Kite Mark on the back of their achievements. The school were represented in all level 2 competitions this year, across a total of 11 different sports resulting in success for their KS2 tag rugby team who won the district competition and are now through to represent Bedford at the county finals. Riseley also have strong club links which enable them to direct pupils onto places where they can develop their talent further. This year 50% of pupils have been engaged in leading, managing and officiating in the school games.

Sharnbrook Upper School

With 30 teams or individuals becoming county champions and the achievement of a Gold School Games Kite Mark award, Sharnbrook have had a strong year. The school are now part of the direct teacher training programme and the PE Department strives to train UoB students to the highest standards. For a rural school Sharnbrook are pleased to offer in excess of 120 pupils after school practices and now have a late bus to facilitate this. The school have strong club links and are dedicated to recognising and developing talent via sport specific clubs. They also have a Sports Leadership Academy which provides opportunities for pupils to volunteer at the school games.

St Gregory’s Middle School

St Gregory’s have celebrated a number of achievements this year including the recognition of a Gold School Games Kite Mark, cup and league wins for the Year 7 boys football team, local, county and National success for the Year 8 girls rugby team (5th in England), a 4th place in ESFA Football competition for their Year 8 boys team in addition to a number of district successes in other sports. Due to a successful Sky Sports Living for Schools bid to encourage disengaged pupils, 92% of their pupils have now taken part in extra curricular activities. The school have excellent club links within a range of sports, including those of their ‘alternative curriculum’ for example Gaelic Football. They are dedicated to promoting a range of sports and physical activity opportunities including inclusive activities at lunchtimes to sports leaders training within the curriculum and inspirational trips to international fixtures.

Wootton Upper School and Arts College

Wootton Upper School have had a number of team successes this year with their U16 netball team winning the county tournament and coming in 3rd at the regional’s, the U14 & U16 boys rugby teams winning the East Midlands 7’s and Beds League & County Cup, the U16 girls football team winning the county cup and the U18 boys football team coming runners up in the county cup. They also have pupils selected for the England Handball Development squad and England Dodgeball Development Squad. Wootton run a well attended Duke of Edinburgh Programme, strong leadership programme, PE buddy scheme and a range of other fundraising and sport media initiatives. The excellent school facilities also play host to a number of local clubs and reinforce school club links, encouraging pupil progression out of school.

Sports Personality of the Year (17 or under)

Hayley Alcock – Swimming

Hayley qualified for the 100 metres breast Stoke and the 100 metres butterfly at the ASA National Youth Championships 2013. Hayley also achieved bronze in the ASA Eastern Region Regional Championships 100 metres Fly and 200 metres individual medley and received a sliver in the 50 metre breast stroke. Hayley has been selected for the Bedfordshire County Squad and is now a qualified Swim Teacher.

Will Athow – Tennis

In 2013, at the age of 16, Will won the 16s, 18s and mixed doubles event at the Bedfordshire Tennis County Closed Tournament and also won the Riverside Tennis Club Men’s Open Championship – becoming the youngest winner in 25 years. Through a dedicated training programme Will now plays for the Bedfordshire Men’s County 1st team and all while completing his A Levels.

Mekeeda Austin – Rounders

Mekeeda is a keen sportswoman and dedicates a lot of her time to afterschool extra curricular clubs and led Mark Rutherford School’s U15 Rounders Team to a number of victories again some very difficult teams. Mekeeda has been selected to play for the England U16 Rounders Team, helps coach the younger players and is a fantastic role model to Mark Rutherford’s younger students.

Katie Batchelor – Wakeboarding

As part of the British Team for Cable Wakeboarding and Boat Wakeboarding Katie’s continuous commitment to the sport has also given her some inspiring individual results, such as; 1st place Junior Ladies IWWF Boat European Champion, overall winner for Junior Ladies AOD National Boat Tour 2013 and Junior Women’s UK British Boat National Champion.

Poppy Blair – Netball

In 2013 Poppy received an outstanding achievement award for her contribution and dedication to netball at Bedford Girls School. She captained her school team for 5 years and assisted the teachers with the organisation of games and training. Poppy coaches the younger students and reached the national finals with the school netball team. Poppy is also a keen member of Wilstead netball club.

Victoria Caldwell – Football

Victoria played for Kempston AFC Girls Team and the Beds&Herts Girls League Representative Team. This season she has been signed for Queens Park Rangers U20 Ladies team, who are at the top of their division, as their goal keeper. Victoria has also been selected for the England Independent Schools Football Association Team after a recent appearance.

Beth Dix – Multi Sports

Beth represents the Wootton Upper School at; Netball, Rounders, Hockey, Football, Athletics, Cross Country and Dodgeball. She was selected for England Netball trials and was then selected for the Mavericks Youth Team. Beth also plays for Bedford Mighty Eagles Dodgeball Team and is part of the England U21 squad. Beth trains for a number of hours each week for a range of clubs and also with England Dodgeball.

Cyeanne Eaton – Judo

Cyeanne has achieved well this year, winning European and British Championship gold medals and a British Sombo Championship where she fought in three different weight categories and won all three. Away from competitions Cyeanne has been awarded her Level 1 coaching award and has progressed to a senior blue belt due to her dedication to the sport.

Alex Ingram – Multi Sports

Alex is ranked 10th in the UK and represented England U20’s in Javelin at the Welsh International Games this year. He was the Doubles Quarter Finalists at this year’s Badminton National Championships. Alex also played county level cricket for the U15’s and U17’s team and represented England at the Karate World and European Championships.

Claudia Johnson – Hockey, Rounders and Tennis

Claudia has been selected for the BMS performance programme which enables her to work with a specialised trainer on strength conditioning and fitness, all of which have helped her to be at the top of her game in both team and individual sports. Claudia is currently, the Rounders U14 England captain, a Hockey U15 and U17 County Player, an U18 County Champion and Ladies singles champion all at the age of just 14.

Frankie Johnson – Pole Vault

Frankie is ranked number one in the UK U13’s Pole Vault with 3.01m indoors/outdoor record. This year he competed up an age group and gained silver at the National Indoor Championships and won the Bedfordshire County Championships. Frankie is training to improve his strength and his technique which should help him achieve his target of selection for English Schools.

Paddy Keaveney – Swimming

Paddy’s commitment to swimming and dedication to training saw him qualify for a number of events at the ASA National Championships where he finished 13th in the country for 1500m freestyle. In the East Region ASA Championships Patrick claimed two gold, five silvers and one bronze crowning him 13 year old champion. He also achieved 17 golds at the Bedfordshire County Championships.

Aiyana Lawson – Swimming

Aiyana qualified for many categories at the ASA National Youth Championships, 10 events at the ASA Eastern Region Regional Championships and 16 events at the Bedfordshire County Championships receiving one bronze, three silver and 11 gold medals. Aiyana is also a member of the Bedfordshire County Squad and trains with them at Inspire Luton (50m Pool).

Gemini Mawson – Dodgeball

At just 16 years old Gemini was a member of the Bedford Mighty Eagles Ladies Dodgeball Team that won the UK National Championships this year. She was scouted at the Bedfordshire School Games and has since been invited to England Dodgeball trials where was selected for the U21’s England Dodgeball Academy. Gemini now aspires to represent the England Senior Dodgeball Team.

Rhiannon McCaffray – Swimming

Rhiannon is a qualified swim teacher based at Moderians and a member of the Bedfordshire County Squad. She also qualified for the 400m individual medley and the 200m butterfly at the ASA National Youth Championships, four events at the ASA Eastern Region Regional Championships and 12 events at the Bedfordshire County Championships receiving two bronze, five silver and one gold medal.

Sam McCarthy and Louis Flashman – Canoe Slalom

Sam and Louis are two keen young paddlers at Viking Kayak Club. They started the year in division 4 and ended it as the 15th best C2 paddlers in the Country. Since training in August they have not lost a race yet and won the British Open on the Lea Valley Olympic Legacy course in November. The pair hope to challenge for a GB place at the Moscow Olympics in 2018.

Paddy McDuell – Rugby and Cricket

Paddy’s outstanding work ethic and time management allows him to train and play to a very high level in both Rugby and Cricket. Paddy has progressed through East Midlands Rugby to now play for the U16 England team and Northampton Saints Academy. He also plays for Northants Cricket and the Bedford Schools Cricket Team. He prides himself on being an excellent ambassador of sport within his school.

Joseph Mullan – Sailing

Joseph is a 15 year old sailor from BMS, who started sailing at the age of eight at Priory Sailing Club. He trained for two years in the Topper National Junior Squad finishing first in the Topper 5.3 National Series in 2012 and 2nd in 2013. He has recently been chosen for the National Laser Radial Transitional Squad.

Brandon Nabarro - Swimming

Brandon is a qualified swim teacher and has been selected for the Bedfordshire County Swim Squad. In the ASA National Youth Championships he was a finalist is the 200 individual medley and finished 16th in the country. He also qualified for 6 events at the ASA Eastern Regions Youth Championships claiming one silver and two bronze medals. Brandon is currently on a sabbatical in Dubai training with Hamilton Aquatics.

Nicola Pasquire – Swimming

As a trained ASA helper and volunteer Nicola helps with the club’s lesson scheme on top of an already hectic training routine. Nicola qualified for the 800m free at the ASA National Youth Championships, five events at the Eastern Regional Championships, claiming bronze in the 400m Free and qualified for six events in the Bedfordshire County Championships receiving five gold and one bronze medals.

Aaron Pearson – Wakeboarding

Aaron has not only reached his targets this year but blown them out the water, receiving a podium place on all waterboarding competitions entered in 2013. Aaron was also selected for the GB team Cable Development Squad organised though the British Waterski and Wakeboard Federation. Aaron is a role modal for all young riders at Box End Park and other venues around Britain.

Ellie Rattu – Netball, Hockey, Badminton

Ellie is part of the County Academy Netball Group and has been a consistent performer at this level. She is still only a young player within the group of players and it is commendable that, due to her dedication to training, has been selected to be part of the new Mavericks Development Squad (equivalent to regional level). Ellie also represents badminton at County Level and Hockey ar Reginal Level and as many school teams as possible.

Lauren Russell – Athletics

In 2013 Lauren made a difficult transition from the U15 age group to U17. The undoubted highlight of her year was placing second in the 800m at the England U17 Championships. In doing so she set a new personal best performance of 2 minutes and 11.63 seconds (an improvement of 3 seconds on 2012) raising her to 10th on the UK U17 rankings. Lauren trains hard and is an inspiration to others at the club.

Josh Spearing – Dodgeball

Josh was selected for the Bedford Mighty Eagles Men’s First Team when he was just 16 and has helped the team move from the second division up to the first division in the National Dodgeball League. As a result of his hard work, talent and dedication Josh has been scouted for the England Dodgeball U21 Academy and is now in the U21 Team. Josh is dedicated to the development of dodgeball in the community.

Peter Webster – Swimming

As a member of the Bedfordshire County Squad Peter has a packed training routine which includes camps at home and abroad. He qualified for the 100m and 200m back stroke at the ASA National Youth Championships, 8 events at the ASA Eastern Region Youth Championships plus 12 events at the Bedfordshire County Championships achieving five silvers and two bronze medals.

Adam Worker – Fly-fishing

2013 saw Adam receive his 5th International Cap and Captain the 14 man England Youth Fly-fishing Team to win gold medals at the International Youth Fly-fishing Championships in Wales. Adam can participate in Senior National Qualifiers from the age of 18 years old but has decided to dedicate 2014 to assisting the England Youth Coaching Team. Adam oftne commits his time to long training days in order to remain at the top level of his sport.

Charlotte Underwood – Athletics

Charlotte is an U17 Sprint Hurdler, she enjoyed a very successful season winning titles at County, County Schools and Midlands Levels. At the English Schools Championships Charlotte came 4th in the Sprint Hurdles, Bronze in the England Championships and silver in the UK School Games. Charlotte is a committed athlete and is now ranked 3rd in UK for 2013, continually improving her personal bests and acting as role model with the club.