The Whitby area award winners at Monday night’s prestigious Scarborough and District Sports Awards have spoken to the Gazette this week of their pride at being the best around.
England footballer Beth Mead, a striker with Sunderland ladies who competed for her country in the U20s World Cup in Canada, scooped the top female achiever.
“It was nice to be recognised as the top female achiever in our area and I’m so happy to receive this award,” she said.
“There is a lot of talented athletes young and old and I’m glad my hard work has been recognised this year.”
The 19-year-old and her Sunderland team-mates are currently on a break after winning the Women’s Super League second division title but will be back in action when pre-season starts in December ahead of the campaign in WSL 1 – the highest standard of women’s football league in the country.
“At the moment we have no manager as our old one [Mick Mulhern] couldn’t commit to full-time due to being a police officer, but I’m excited for the change and the times ahead,” she said.
U14 junior sports girl Thea Fenwick, a top class young skier from Sleights, hopes her award will encourage other people locally to have a go at snow sports.
“I like going to the sports awards because I never get the chance to ski or compete in my local area,” she said.
“As ambassador for the national ‘Go Ski Go Board’ programme, I hope this award will encourage people in my community to have a go at snow sports.”
Her mother Sarah was equally pleased.
“We are very proud of Thea’s sporting achievements,” she said, “even though she is now a British Champion, competing at international level, she’s just as thrilled to win this local award.”
Thea has also just found out this week she has gone to the top of the British Snow Tour rankings.
North Riding Eagles were crowned the U18 top playing team, on top of their impressive ascent up the high quality national volleyball league they compete in.
Captain Rebecca Laffan said she was proud to receive the award on behalf of her team-mates who have continuously battled in matches to get results and win trophies.
“I guess we have started to mature as players because we always feel we can find a way to win,” she said.
Eagles’ England Cadet captain Eva Elias, runner-up in U16 junior sports girl, said: “I hope this shows the children in local schools that you can win national honours with your local club.
“New players of all ages and ability are always welcomed.”
Team-mate Izzy Shackleton added it was “still great fun and we would like to thank all those people who have helped and supported us.”
Whitby Boxing Club continue to go from strength to strength by taking the gong for top community sports club which drew a loud cheer from their members and followers. The club, which has been going for less than a year, is still seeking a permanent Whitby home.
Head coach Stewart Lorains said: “To beat another seven clubs in that category, we were just shocked.”
“It’s a marvellous achievement for a club that opened on January 7.
“It’s just unbelievable, the dedication the kids have put in.”
Whitby Town FC boss Darren Williams claimed runner-up in coach of the year after spearheading play-off challenges in the EvoStik League Premier Division, while on one of the tightest playing budgets.