The Athletics Northern Territory community, invited guests and sponsors all heard some of the amazing achievements from our members over the past 12 months which included new Northern Territory Records, National Records, Australian Representation and the Northern Territory’s first World Championship Medal.
Kayla Costello from the Katherine Athletics Club won the Junior Female of the year award. She was a Northern Territory Representative at the 2014 School Sport Championships. Kayla was also selected to participate in the AIS Athletes Talent Day earlier this year which see her travel to Melbourne following the 2015 School Sport Championships, in Canberra, to participate in the Raise the Bar Program run by Athletics Australia.
Senator Nova Peris OAM presented the Male and Female Masters Athlete of the year to Maggie Roberts (MAD Frogs) who has just returned from the Oceania Masters Athletics Championships in the Cook Island with 7 Medals and Colin Heywood (MAD Frogs) who took Bronze earlier this year in Lyon at the World Masters Athletics Championships in the 20km Road Race Walk.
Senator Peris also spoke about her time as an elite athlete and told the Athletes at the dinner to just ‘dream big and believe it could happen’. That is exactly what Drew Blair who took out the Junior Male Athlete of the year is doing.
Drew told us it is his ‘aspiration and life time ambition is to compete and represent Australia at the 2020 Olympics’. Drew took Gold in every event he competed in at the 2015 Northern Territory Athletes Championship and at 16 was the youngest entrant in the Elite Field at the recent Mitchell Street Mile taking out 9th Place.
Hollie Henderson from the Katherine Athletics Club and Jack Logan of Rural Athletics Centre took out the Female and Male Para Athlete of the Year awards. Hollie has spent 2015 focusing on National events and excelled with a new Australian Record at the National Junior Championships earlier this year in the under 20 T36 Javelin at just 16 years of age. Jack is aiming for big things at the 2015 All Schools Championships in December being his first National Competition. The recent New Zealand Paralympic team camp in Darwin has given Jack an extra boost of confidence to head onto the track having met other athletes with the same classification competing at an international level.
Hon Gary Higgins MLA Minster of Sport and Recreation presented Andrea Foot of the Palmerston Athletics Club with the Female Athlete of the Year. Brad White of the Alice Springs Runners and Walkers Club took the Male Athlete of the year over Darwin’s Darren Peacock. Brad has just returned from Wales where he was a member of the Australian World Mountain Running Championship Team. He placed 4th at the National Mountain Running Championships and competed in the 3200m and 1600m events at the famed Stawell Gift in April. Back in the Territory Brad also took Gold in the 10km event at the Alice Springs Running Festival (in August) the Rapid Ascent 11km Stage 1 and the Dessert Sport Foundation 1000m.
Other awards of the night went to
Anita Wickremasena of Palmerston Athletics Club for Administrator/Volunteer of the year
Roger Chin of Rural Athletics Centre for Official of the Year
Klaus Roth of Darwin Runners and Walkers for Coach of the Year
Emma Kraft of Alice Springs Walkers and Runner took out the coveted Don Dick Award for Services to the sport of Athletics in the Northern Territory. Emma who is an Athlete and competed at the 2014 World Mountain Running Championships has battled a spate of injuries in 2015 and has spent the majority of the year in a support and mentoring role with Athletes of all levels across the Territory and in National Teams, this saw her selected as the Team Manager for the Australian 2015 World Mountain Running team.