Five athletes are in the running to receive the FPSG Scottish athlete of the year honour ahead of next month’s awards dinner
Callum Hawkins, Sammi Kinghorn, Eilish McColgan, Laura Muir and Chris O’Hare all remain in the running to receive the FPSG Scottish athlete of the year honour at the Scottish Athletics awards dinner in Glasgow on November 4.
Muir, who has won the main award the past two years, and Hawkins made the shortlist after their fourth-place finishes at the IAAF World Championships in London and are joined by double World Para Athletics Championships winner Kinghorn. McColgan and O’Hare each broke Scottish records during their impressive track seasons.
Female athletes have dominated winning the award in recent years, with Muir (pictured) preceded by the likes of Eilidh Doyle and Lynsey Sharp in the current decade. Both Doyle and Sharp made individual finals at London 2017 but such has been the level and depth of quality of performances that they did not make the 2017 shortlist.
Rodger Harkins, performance director at Scottish Athletics, said: “Our FPSG athlete of the year shortlists are chosen by an independent panel and I am one of those who sits on that and is involved in the process. And I can safely say it is becoming one of the toughest decisions we have to make each year!
“For 2016, we took a one-off decision to extend the shortlist to eight athletes given a number of high-quality performances and national records set in Rio. This year, the panel decided to return to more usual practice for shortlists of three to five names and that has made it very difficult indeed.
“Let me congratulate each and every athlete, and their coach, who has made our final lists. I believe that’s a big achievement in itself and reflects on really hard work put in, not just over the past 12 months, but almost without exception over a number of years to reach a high level in our sport.”
He added: “With regard to London, there were relay medals for Zoey Clark and Eilidh Doyle and we were delighted at their involvement within a GB and NI team in the 4x400m. This year the panel opted to put more of an emphasis on individual performances at the very highest level.
“I can’t speak too highly of the Scottish athletes who have been in London this year, both at the World Champs and the World Para Champs, and that will be reflected at the FPSG awards dinner.
“But we remember, too, that the sport in Scotland also covers hill running, ultra, cross country, clubs, officials and volunteers and it is right to celebrate that involvement on November 4.”
Former GB and NI internationals Kelly Sotherton and Jenny Meadows have been named as guests of honour for the FPSG-sponsored awards dinner.
FPSG athlete of the year: Callum Hawkins, Sammi Kinghorn, Eilish McColgan, Laura Muir, Chris O’Hare
Para athlete of the year: Amy Carr, Sammi Kinghorn, Maria Lyle, Derek Rae, Stef Reid
Under-20 athlete of the year: George Evans, Holly McArthur, Jemma Reekie, Alisha Rees, Erin Wallace
Under-17 athlete of the year: Adam Clayton; Joel McFarlane
Masters athlete of the year: Fiona Davidson, Philippa Millage, Paul Thompson