Following an outstanding season that saw him become Scotland’s most successful athlete ever at a single Commonwealth Games, with six medals in Gold Coast, followed by four medals at the European Championships in Glasgow, Duncan Scott added to his accolades tonight as he lifted the Emirates Lonsdale Trophy as 2018 Scottish Sportsperson of the Year, at the Team Scotland Scottish Sports Awards.
With a host of sporting stars, including medallists from the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games and recent European Championships in attendance, the evening was an inspirational celebration of their outstanding achievements, as well as the success of individuals, schools, clubs and teams across the whole of Scottish sport.
Named Male Athlete of the Year for the second year in succession, Duncan added the title of Scottish Sportsperson of the Year, putting his name on the Emirates Lonsdale Trophy alongside past winners such as Sir Chris Hoy, Sir Andy Murray and Dame Katherine Grainger. His gold in the 100m Freestyle was the undoubted highlight of an incredible haul in Gold Coast, as he touched ahead of multiple World Champion and four-time Olympic medallist Chad le Clos of South Africa. It was the first time a Scottish athlete has ever won this event and he was just four hundredths of a second outside the Games record. Three gold and one sliver, plus two Championship records at the European Championships in front of a home crowd in Glasgow, rounded off an incredible few months for the 21 year old.
Duncan’s success came on a superb night for the University of Stirling swimming programme, as Duncan’s coach Steven Tigg took the Coach of the Year award. Alongside Duncan’s phenomenal record, Steven also coached England’s Amiee Wilmott to Commonwealth Games gold in the 400m Individual Medley, as well as Craig MacLean and Scott McLay who made their senior Commonwealth Games debuts, swimming the heats for Scotland’s bronze medal winning 4x100m Freestyle Relay.
Laura Muir’s sensational season, which saw her claim three global medals and win the overall Diamond League crown over 1500m, alongside successfully completing her veterinary degree, gave her the nod for Female Athlete of the Year. She topped an extremely strong shortlist, which included diver Grace Reid and cyclist Katie Archibald who both did the Commonwealth and European Championships gold medal double.
Cycling had a hugely successful night as, alongside Katie’s nomination, they were winners of Governing Body of the Year, in addition to Neil Fachie, with pilot Matt Rotherham, being named Para-Sport Athlete of the Year, after winning two gold medals at the World Para-Cycling Championships and repeating the same double just two weeks later at the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games.
Para-Cycling was in the spotlight once again, as 2012 Paralympic gold medallist David Smith MBE took the Team Scot of the Year award in recognition of his incredible drive and determination in the face of adversity. A true ambassador for Team Scotland and Scottish sport, his fight to continue to compete at the top level, despite a recurring spinal-cord tumor and residual paralysis following surgery, has inspired many people, both in Scotland and around the world.
There were huge receptions for both Scotland’ men’s cricket and rugby teams, popular winners of Sporting Moment of the Year and Team of the Year respectively. Cricket’s historic win over England in their One Day International, including Calum MacLeod’s whirlwind 140 off 94 balls, was the moment that captured the heart of the nation and majority of the public vote. Rugby’s Calcutta Cup heroics gave them the nod over Team Scotland’s Basketball and Lawn Bowls teams from Gold Coast and Celtic FC for Team of the Year.
Scotland’s most successful athlete in Commonwealth Games history, after winning a record fifth gold in Gold Coast, Alex Marshall MBE was honoured with the Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition of an outstanding, and still ongoing, career. A Scottish international since 1987, Gold Coast was an incredible sixth Games appearance for Team Scotland. He also holds the record for the most World titles with 20, beginning with three gold medals at the 1992 World Outdoor Championships and continuing all the way through to a record sixth World Indoor Singles title in 2015.
In contrast, at the start of his career and selected to represent Team Scotland in Gold Coast at the age of just 16, Lucas Thomson was the winner of the Sir Peter Heatly Trophy as Young Athlete of the Year. He had a phenomenal 12 months, finishing fifth in two finals in Gold Coast and going on to win a silver and two bronze at the European Junior Championships, four medals on the senior FINA Diving Grand Prix Series and gold at the World Junior Diving Championships.
Individuals and organisations driving success at all levels of Scottish sport were also honoured, with Jim Hay named as Volunteer of the Year for his work in Squash, while SAPC Community Sports Hub took Community Hub, Club or School of the Year.
With 2018 designated the Year of Young People, there was also a special award, presented by Young Scot, for 18 year old Kamil Cybulski, recognising his outstanding volunteer work, including founding Glasgow Devils Basketball Club and guiding them to third place in the league.
Paul Bush OBE, Chair of Commonwealth Games Scotland, said: “Tonight has been a fantastic celebration of what has been and continues to be a golden year for Scottish sport, with our athletes excelling across a packed schedule of championship events.
“A huge thank you to our partners and sponsors, whose support has made this fantastic event possible and enables us to properly recognise the achievements of the individuals, teams and organisations that help to put Scotland on the sporting map.
“There is much to look forward to in 2019, with Scotland welcoming world-class athletes to the European Indoor Athletics Championships and the 2019 Solheim Cup. I am quite sure we will be celebrating our athletes’ achievements at these and other major events this time next year.”
Over 550 people joined the celebrations at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre, where the evening was hosted by highly respected TV presenters Hazel Irvine and Dougie Vipond, with funds raised for the Scottish Commonwealth Games Youth Trust.
2018 AWARD WINNERS
Scottish Sportsperson of the Year – Emirates Lonsdale Trophy: Duncan Scott, Swimmng
Male Athlete of the Year – sponsored by Brand Oath: Duncan Scott, Swimming
Female Athlete of the Year – sponsored by J Thomson Colour Printers: Laura Muir, Athletics
Para-Sport Athlete of the Year – sponsored by sportscotland: Neil Fachie with Matt Rotherham, Para-Cycling
Young Athlete of the Year – Sir Peter Heatly Trophy, sponsored by Scottish Commonwealth Games Youth Trust: Lucas Thomson, Diving
Team of the Year – sponsored by PSL Team Sports: Scotland Men’s Rugby
Coach of the Year – sponsored by University of Stirling: Steven Tigg, Swimming
Sporting Moment of the Year – sponsored by Aberdeen Standard Investments:
Scotland’s win over England in One Day International Cricket
Volunteer of the Year – sponsored by QTV Sports: Jim Hay, Squash
Governing Body of the Year – sponsored by Eden Mill and Fever Tree: Scottish Cycling
Community Hub, Club or School of the Year – sponsored by Active Scotland: SAPC Community Sports Hub
Lifetime Achievement – sponsored by Commonwealth Games Scotland: Alex Marshall MBE, Lawn Bowls
Team Scot of the Year – sponsored by Commonwealth Games Scotland: David Smith MBE, Para-Cycling
Year of Young People Award – sponsored by Young Scot: Kamil Cybulski, Basketball