Sporting Excellence Awards
Sport is one of the pinnacle aspects of service life and the RAF Sports Board seeks to recognise sporting achievement each year at the Sporting excellence awards.
Held at Halton House on the 23rd November 2012 and attended by Air Chief Marshal Sir Stephen Dalton, Chief of the Air Staff and President of the RAF Sports Board. RAF Marham saw three members of FES nominated within the categories.
Sgt Ann Thomas was nominated Sports Woman of the Year, whilst Cpl John Williams and Cpl Neil Richardson formed part of the RAF Safety Boat and Cycling Team nominations respectively. Prior to the awards ceremony there is an informal opportunity for the presenting officer to meet all of the nominees. The CAS took a great interest in the achievements of all the nominees and in his closing address indicated his pride and admiration for what individuals had achieved and how they ultimately portrayed the RAF within both the Forces and the wider public domain.
The format of the ceremony sees each category nominee’s citations read out and then the winner announced. As you would expect from 2012 the majority of citations had an Olympic influence and it can not be overemphasised as to the quality of each nomination and its suitability to be considered for an award. As each citation is read it is clear to not only the audience but the nominees themselves that anyone is capable of winning and the selection of an overall winner must have been an extraordinarily difficult task.
Sgt Ann Thomas, nominated for Sports Woman of the year Award for her sport of Powerlifting, was runner up to an individual who had been capped 50 times for Wales and was a reserve for the GB ladies Football team for the Olympics.
Cpl John Williams was a member of the RAF Safety Boat Team, who was nominated for Team of the Year. His involvement and team efforts saw them participate both in the 2012 Olympics and Paralympics. Cpl Neil Richardson was part of the RAF Cycling team, nominated for its impressive achievements over the sporting year. Both sports however lost out to the RAF Football Association for Team of the Year.
Flt Lt Des Moroney, OC ESF attended the event as support for the nominees and commented “it was fantastic for FES and the Station to be represented by such excellent sporting success at the awards and although none of the individuals were winners their achievements and individual success is something that FES and RAF Marham are immensely proud of. It is testament to their dedication and determination that despite the heavy Operational commitments, particularly over the last 12 months, that these individuals have achieved what they have, they are an inspiration and an example that we should all follow.”