Rodger Harkins – ‘FPSG Athlete of the Year contenders have raised the bar even higher in 2017’
All roads lead to the Hilton Hotel in Glasgow this weekend with the National Club Conference on Saturday followed by an eagerly-anticipated FPSG Awards Dinner.
The sold-out signs went up some time ago for the Dinner with around 575 guests set to pack out the event as we await the announcement of the FPSG Athlete of the Year among a number of coveted awards.
It is the first year under the sponsorship of recruitment company FPSG (we’re on the hashtag #FPSGawards all weekend) and the second of our media partnership with The Herald – who will have a comprehensive preview in Saturday’s edition of the paper.
scottishathletics would like to congratulate all those in contention for the many awards which cover athletes, coaches, clubs, volunteers and Officials and also take in our jogscotland community.
For the headline award, there are five athletes in contention following the deliberations of a Selection Panel to form a short-list that features (in alphabetical order): Callum Hawkins, Sammi Kinghorn, Eilish McColgan, Laura Muir and Chris O’Hare.
In terms of athletes, we also have the Para Athlete of the Year awards plus those in the U20, U17 and Masters categories. We’re delighted to welcome Kelly Sotherton and Jenny Meadows as Guests of Honour on Saturday night.
Read more on the short-lists for all the various Awards via the following links to stories:
‘I think the FPSG Awards will demonstrate quite clearly the strong health of the sport in Scotland,’ said Rodger Harkins, Performance Director.
‘In terms of the FPSG Athlete of the Year award itself, I don’t think anyone would disagree that the last couple of years have seen the bar rise even higher in terms of the standard being achieved by the contenders.
‘Arguably, it has gone up higher once again for 2017 with a host of Scottish National Record holders and a World Record holder nominated on the (five-strong) short-list.
‘We’ve had so many candidates to choose from that putting together the short-list is the really difficult bit.
‘One of the reasons for that, of course, is trying to compare performances across different disciplines and levels: how do you actually interpret and evaluate best performances in contrasting areas of the sport?
‘You may not get everyone on the same page on that and indeed we didn’t within the Selection Panel, who made the choices. There were some contrasting viewpoints.
By the way, it is absolutely fine for people to have different opinions on the short-lists and the winners. Debate is a good thing and we’re delighted if people in the community and beyond are arguing the merits of certain athletes because it means they are taking strong interest in the sport.
‘In the not too distant past, we’ve had one clear candidate or maybe two strong favourites and people have had a pretty good idea of who would be Athlete of the Year.
‘It is more open now and I firmly believe that shows the strong health of the sport and that’s apparent in other areas, too.
‘We have six candidates in the Performance Coach of the Year award category and all the candidates are Scottish. There has been some great work done by our top coaches in the past year and that is reflected in the Coaching Awards.
‘On the club side, there’s a lot to be pleased about, as well, with 13 different clubs listed for three awards – Impact Club of the Year, Track and Field Club of the Year and Off Track Club of the Year. The six clubs short-listed for Impact Club of the Year are all great examples of development work happening around the country.’
Bryan Burnett is our host once again on Saturday evening – chatting here last year with Beth Potter as Steph Twell and Laura Muir look on (photo by Bobby Gavin)