Bob skeleton champion David Swift, 24, has been crowned Teignbridge Sports Personality of the Year.
In February, 2008 in Austria, David came second in the Under 23 World Junior Championships and in March 2008 he came 1st in British Championships, also held in Austria. He is ranked 29th in the World Ranking for the 08/09 season, and has been head hunted to join the GB squad to train for the winter Olympics in Russia in 2014. His progress has been so good that David has now been told that he has a chance of coming to the Winter Olympic Games in Vancouver in February 2010.
David said: “I’m really pleased to have received this award – a lot of time and effort has gone in to the last few years from me, my family and support staff, and it’s really great to have this recognised by my sporting peers.
“As the current British Champion for Bob Skeleton my fingers are firmly crossed for being chosen to take part in the Winter Olympics next year. I’m currently in Germany training for the new season, and am looking forward to my first race which takes place today!
“I know there’s a lot of competition at the Teignbridge awards, and it feels great to be named this year’s Sports Personality of the Year.”
As part of the evening two Special Awards were also given. The first was the David Vine Sports Correspondent Special Award, named for the BBC sports correspondent who was born in Newton Abbot and served a lifetime of professional sports corresponding both within the region with ITV and also nation wide with the BBC.
The award, the first of its kind at the Teignbridge Sports Personality of the Year Awards, was presented to Graham Penn of local running club Teignbridge Trotters for his impressive and consistent sports correspondent work as part of raising the profile of his local sports club and its achievements.
The second Special Award was the ‘It Wouldn’t Happen Without You’ Special Award, created especially for one of the evening’s nominees in recognition of his outstanding commitment to cricket. The award was presented by Cllr Sylvia Russell, Chairman of Teignbridge Council, to Ted Ashman for his commitment to voluntary work and helping young cricketers. Ted has managed the Devon U10 and U11 youth cricket team for over 25 years.
His passion, dedication and commitment to the sport has given countless young people a positive approach to their discipline, helping them develop a good mental attitude and team spirit. He leads by example and the children respect his professionalism and efficiency. Apart from managing the U10 and U11 teams throughout the season, organising and coordinating winter selection, trials and training, he helps with the smooth running and organisation of the cricket festival at Kings College Taunton. Ted is also actively involved with the county ASDA Kwik cricket and school hard ball competitions. He works closely with the Devon Cricket board is currently its treasurer and youth Association Secretary.
Other awards on the evening spanned an additional 13 categories (17 categories in total), and first place winners were:
· Services to Sport (Community) – Ted Ashman (Devon Cricket Association)
· Services to Sport (Education) – Anna Perry (Widecombe In The Moor Primary School)
· Coach/Manager of the Year – Lance Ames (Manager, Bovey Tracey U11 Cricket Team)
· Most Improved Sportsperson of the Year – Lewis Naisbett-Jones (Ashmoor Hockey Club)
· Volunteer of the Year – Jake Durant (Cycling, Mid-Devon Cycling Club, South Dartmoor Specialist Sports College)
· Sportsperson of the Year with a Physical/Learning Disability – Elliot Fay (15, Fishing)
· Services to Health and Physical Activity – Kathy Bush (Walk This Way)
· Junior Team of the Year – Ashmoor U12’s Girls Football Team
· Senior Team of the Year-Teignmouth Ladies Hockey Club 1st XI
· Junior Sportswoman of the Year – Abbi Carne (13, Swimming)
· Senior Sportswoman of the Year – Natalie McColl (Tae Kwon Do)
· Junior Sportsman of the Year – Dan McBride (16, BMX Racing)
· Senior Sportsman of the Year – David Swift (24, Bob Skeleton)
· Young Persons Services to Sport & Physical Education – Ben O’Neill (17, South Devon Specialist Sports College)
· “It Wouldn’t Happen Without You” Special Award – Ted Ashman
· Overall Sports Personality of the Year – David Swift (24, Bob Skeleton)
· David Vine Sports Correspondent Special Award – Graham Penn (Teignbridge Trotters)