Three of Scotland’s brightest sporting prospects have been named as finalists for the Sir Peter Heatly Trophy and the title of Young Athlete of the Year at the 2016 Team Scotland Scottish Sports Awards on 28 September. Swimmer Kathleen Dawson, boxer John Docherty and para-sport sprinter Maria Lyle are in the running to take the prestigious award sponsored by EDF Energy Renewables.
As finalists, they follow in the footsteps of some of Scotland’s current stars including 2015 winner, swimmer Duncan Scott, who recently returned from the Rio Olympics with two silver medals. The credentials of this year’s nominees suggest they all have an exciting future ahead.
At the European Swimming Championships in May, Kathleen Dawson became the first Scottish woman to break the one minute barrier in the 100m Backstroke as she lowered the Scottish record three times on route to winning the bronze medal. She went on to swim the lead off leg in the 4 x 100m medley relay, taking gold with her GB team mates. At the age of 18 she is now the Scottish record holder in all three backstroke events.
18 year old boxer John Docherty is recently returned from watching the action in Rio, where he was one of only two boxers chosen for Team GB’s Ambition programme for future Olympic prospects – just reward for a year in which he has amassed a collection of major championships medals. He took gold at the 2015 Commonwealth Youth Games in Samoa and silver at the European Youth Championships before announcing his arrival at senior level by taking the Scottish title, silver at the British Championships and gold at elite international level in Belgrade.
At 16 years of age Maria Lyle has a track record that many senior athletes would be envious ofand is set to make her Paralympic Games debut in Rio. In 2015 she won silver medals in both the 100m and 200m T35 races at the IPC Athletics World Championships, adding gold in the 4x100m relay as Great Britain stormed to victory in a new world record. Most recently, she smashed her personal bests to take triple gold at the 2016 IPC European Championships. She took the 100m and 200m titles in European records and set another world record as part of the 4 x 100m relay squad. In Rio she will go up against Australian rival Isis Holt in one of the most eagerly anticipated events of the Paralympic Games.
Paul Bush, Chairman, Commonwealth Games Scotland said: “The breadth and depth of nominations received for this award, and the wide range of sports represented, shows that the future of Scottish sport is in good hands. We have an incredibly strong line up in our three finalists. I congratulate them on their tremendous achievements over the past year and look forward to following their future successes.
Sponsor of the Young Athlete of the Year Award, EDF Energy Renewables, is an experienced wind farm developer and operator with sites spanning the length and breadth of the UK. They operate five sites in Scotland and, with several projects already consented or under construction, are committed to make a real contribution to the country’s targets for renewable energy and the reduction of carbon dioxide emissions.
CEO of EDF Energy Renewables, Matthieu Hue said: “We are delighted to support the Team Scotland Scottish Sports Awards and to sponsor the Young Athlete of the Year award. All the athletes have shown real dedication, strength and courage to achieve their dreams and are a real inspiration to us all. As a company, we are as committed to Scotland as they are.”
Winners across all twelve categories will be crowned at the Team Scotland Scottish Sports Awards in a star-studded celebration of Scottish sport on 28 September at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre.