It’s been a quiet few years for Hawick’s sportsmen and women at the annual ClubSport Roxburgh Awards but last Friday night they made up for it in spades.
Attending the final regional awards ceremony of the season, at Jed-Forest RFC’s Riverside Park clubrooms, the Teri’s scooped five of the nine trophies on offer.
ClubSport Roxburgh chairman Norman Anderson led the proceedings that saw individuals and clubs recognised for their efforts within sport and in keeping the region more physically active.
Riding high on the night was Hawick jockey Craig Nichol who was named 2017 ClubSport Roxburgh Sports Personality of the Year.
During his jumps career to date Craig has had 130 wins from 1145 rides and has had 17 winners already in the 2017/2018 season.
Craig cemented his name as one of the top young jump riders in the sport in 2016 when 36 wins, over a 12-month period, saw him claim the Stobart Champion Conditional Jockey Award with relative ease.
Riding at the time for fellow Teri Keith Dalgleish the 22-year-old beat his closest rival Harry Cobden by six wins.
Speaking after collecting his ClubSport Roxburgh Award on Friday night Craig said: “I feel incredibly honoured to have won this award tonight, it’s always special to be recognised in your own area.
“Winning Champion Conditional Jockey was a great experience for me and it’s important now to keep building on that. It’s early days this season so far and my aim is to get 40 winners by the end of it.”
Now competing as a freelance rider Craig regularly secures bookings for Dalgleish along with other high profile trainers such as Rose Dobbin and Nicky Richards but puts much of his early success down to the experience gained whilst growing up in Hawick.
“There are so many good yards around and some great opportunities if you are willing to put in the hard work,” he added.
“Horse racing is something I love and that I have always loved even as a kid. It can be mentally and physically tough but if you enjoy it, as I do, then I would encourage other youngsters to take it up.”
Rising rugby star Darcy Graham, also from Hawick, was the recipient of the Junior Sports Personality of the Year Award following a season which saw him represent Scotland at Under 20s level and named in the ‘Team of the Tournament’ in the Junior World Cup. Since his return from the World Cup.
Other Hawick Award winners were Hawick Albion RFC, who’s honours over the past season include winning the Scottish Youth League Cup and the Borders U16 League.
Hawick Boxing Club legend Les Casson picked up the Coach of the Year Award while the Hawick Bowling Club Scottish Championship winning senior rink of, Willie Wells, Robin Bell, Les Clarkson and Bill Anderson (skip) were given a special recognition award.
Also receiving special recognition was Roxburgh Reivers Orienteering Club chairman Robin Sloan, who’s many achievements in the last year included picking up a World and two Scottish titles in the M70 class.
Bowling was once again to the fore in the Disability Award category which, this year, was won by Jedburgh BC’s Mike Nicoll who’s recent success on the greens has put him in contention for a place in the Scottish squad heading to the 2018 Commonwealth Games in Australia.
Kelso badminton and hockey coach Linsey Young took the Junior Coach of the Year honours while fellow Tweedsider Addie Gray was given the SALSC Service to Sport Award in recognition of his relentless work on the athletics circuit.
2017 winners at a glance:
Special Recognition Award – Hawick Bowling Club Senior Rink (Willie Wells, Robin Bell, Les Clarkson and Bill Anderson)
Special Recognition Award – Robin Sloan
Junior Coach of the Year – Linsey Young
Coach of the Year – Les Casson
Club of the Year – Hawick Albion RFC
SALSC Service to Sport – Addie Gray
Disability Award – Mike Nicoll
Junior Sports Personality of the Year – Darcy Graham
Sports Personality of the Year – Craig Nichol