Special night at 12th Annual Sports Awards

Winners and finalists together at the end


1. Winners and finalists together at the end

2. Karen Bowen and Geoff Williams

3. Kristian Speake

4. The packed audience



A host of inspirational achievements in sport were celebrated at the prestigious 2018 Sport Pembrokeshire Awards last Friday in front of an appreciative audience of over 600 at the Folly Farm Theatre.


Overall, 14 award-winners were announced in a variety of categories, together with the winners of two special awards in the Lifetime Achievement Award and the Chairman’s Special Achievement Award.


Now in its 12th year, the ceremony was hosted by sports journalist Bill Carne and Cllr Huw George and organised by Sport Pembrokeshire – and both were eager to point out during the ceremony that just to be a finalist from a record number of entries was a wonderful feat and all others who just missed out would receive a special certificate to recognise that significant achievement.


The event was also sponsored by Valero, Western Telegraph, Radio Pembrokeshire and Folly Farm, plus other support from ‘Get Out Get Active, Sport Wales, Snowdrop Independent Living, Strength Academy Wales and the Pembrokeshire Youth Service.


Deserved Lifetime Award for The Bowens


Karen Bowen and Geoff WilliamsThe Lifetime Achievement award was presented to Karen Bowen, on behalf of her and husband Peter, who Geoff Williams, Head of BBC Wales Sport, said were ‘at the forefront of British horse racing’.

He said: “Peter and Karen Bowen transformed a bungalow and a few fields into one of the best yards in the UK. Their complex at Letterston now boasts over 70 boxes and state-of-the-art facilities.

“But team Bowen is a family outfit. Karen is a former champion point-to-pointer, eldest son Mickey has a reputation as a successful point-to-point trainer; and Sean and James are professional jockeys. At 16, James became the youngest winner of the Welsh Grand National this year.

“They achieved a clean sweep at the recent inaugural Welsh Racing Awards – as Peter won the Welsh Trainer of the Year award; Sean picked up the Welsh Jockey of the Year and James was honoured as the Rising Star of the Year.

“Incredibly, the stable is on the verge of 1000 winners.”


Kristian receives deserved recognition


Kristian SpeakeThe Special Achievement Award, presented by the Chairman of Pembrokeshire County Council, went to 27-year-old footballer Kristian Speake from Crundale.

“The Award is given to a sportsman or woman who has overcome great adversity – and tonight’s winner is certainly no exception,” said Cllr Aden Brinn, Chairman.

“Kristian played for Haverfordwest AFC until last February when he was grievously injured in an incident in the town which resulted in a serious injury to his skull.

“He was in a coma for 24 days in the intensive care unit at the University Hospital of Wales in Cardiff before being placed on a neurological ward for several weeks.

“Kristian then spent six weeks in a special unit in Port Talbot where he underwent extensive physical and cognitive rehabilitation. He had three eye operations as well as brain surgery in which surgeons fitted a titanium plate in the right side of his head.

“However, there is a happy ending. Though determination and the support of his family and friends, Kristian has made a miraculous recovery and completed the Cardiff half marathon in October, raising money for the Cardiff and Vale Health Charity as a thank you to the medical staff involved in his treatment.”


Alan Jones, the event organiser and Ben Field, manager of Sport Pembrokeshire, rightly congratulated all the winners, finalists and nominees to round off a wonderful night to remember for all involved.


Coach of the Year: Simon Roach (Weightlifting).

Finalists: Finola Findlay (Dance) and Richard Owens (Sailing)


Female Sporting Achievement: Caryl Jones (Athletics).

Finalists: Gabrielle Ridge (Canoe Slalom) and Heather Lewis (Race Walking)


Male Sporting Achievement: Seth Morris (Surfing).

Finalists: Simon Holliday (Cricket) and Wiliam Lloyd (Athletics)


Boys (U16) Sporting Achievement: Alex O’Sullivan (Boxing).

Finalists: Alfie Luger (Gymnastics) and (Athletics and Rugby)


Girls (U16) Sporting Achievement: Ella Wintle (Athletics).

Finalists: Lowri Hart (Badminton), and Kasumi Tran (Golf) and Carys Worby


Disability Sport Award: Ryan Foot (Rugby).

Finalists: Rhys Davies (Swimming) and Alex Gulliksen (Sailing)


Junior (U16) Disability Sport Award: Lily Rice (Wheelchair Motocross).

Finalists: Libi Phillips (Wheelchair rugby and Racing) and Leon Davies (Gymnastics, Swimming, Target Shooting and Cricket)


Unsung Hero: William McGarvie (Neyland Judo Club).

Finalists: Lawrence Worth (Pembrokeshire Harriers) and Trefor Evans (Cricket)


Club Organiser: Kathy Hicks (Narberth Netball Club).

Finalists: Alison Dixon (Tennis) and Steve Whitmore (Disability Bowls)


Team Achievement: Neyland CC 1st XI.

Finalists: Fishguard & Goodwick Ladies Hockey) and Goodwick United (Football)


Junior (U16) Team Achievement: STP Inclusive Zone Basketball.

Finalists: Just Tri Junior Tri (Triathlon) and Pembroke School Year Nine Football team


Contribution to School Sport: Nicola Hayton (IZB Basketball)

Finalists: Matthew Vaughan (Fenton School) and Duncan Hart (Tasker Milward/Haverfordwest High Schools)


Student Contribution to School Sport: Nicola Hayton (Platinum Ambassador).

Finalists: Ellee Dunning (Greenhill School) and Paddy Gallagher (Ysgol Dewi Sant)


Club of the Year: Strength Academy Wales.

Finalists: Hakin United Football Club and Pembroke Rugby Club


** Also praised were the team members of the FF Dancers for their superb routine, employees of Sport Pembrokeshire and the staff on duty from Folly Farm, especially sound and lighting expert Andrew Russell, plus Ian and Bev Richards of Pembrokeshire Photography.

The packed audience