Athletes and administrators from timbersports, shearing, harness racing, rodeo, tree climbing, highland heavies, gumboot throwing and fencing have been announced as finalists in the Norwood New Zealand Rural Sports Awards.
In its seventh year, the awards honour the athletes and the volunteers and administrators who make rural sports possible.
Convenor of judges and Olympic rowing medallist Nathan Twaddle said the wealth of talent nominated was outstanding and it was a difficult job for the team of judges.
The finalists are:
The PTS Logistics New Zealand Rural Sportsman of the Year Award
• Tony Bouskill from Napier – Fencing
• Jack Jordan from Taumarunui, – Timbersports
• Jeremy Millar from Hamilton – Tree Climbing
The Skellerup New Zealand Rural Sportswoman of the Year Award:
• Nicky Chilcott from Cambridge – Harness Racing
• Megan Whitehead from Gore – Shearing
• Stephanie Dryfhout from Tauranga – Tree Climbing
Future Post Rural Sportsperson with a Disability
• Cameron Leslie MNZM from Tutakaka – paralympic swimmer and Wheel Black
• Adam Hall MNZM from Wanaka – Super-Combined Standing and Slalom Standing events
The Fonterra Young New Zealand Rural Sportsperson of the Year Award:
• Lane Whitelock from Dannevirke – Rodeo
• Carter Dalgety from West Melton – Harness Racing
• Reuben Alabaster from Taihape – Shearing
The Levno Outstanding Contribution to New Zealand Rural Sports Award:
• Eileen Smith from Waimate – Shearing
• Deidre Bartlett from Opake, Wairarapa – Sheepdog Trials
• Elizabeth Mortland from Taihape – Gumboot Throwing
• Patsy Shirley from Lumsden – Shearing
The Courtesy Ford Lifetime Legacy Award
• Jason Wynyard from Kawakawa – Timbersports
• Reuben de Jong from Auckland – Highland Heavies
• Dr Luk Chin from Tamahere, Waikato – Harness Racing
The Sir Brian Lochore Memorial Award for Outstanding Sportsperson from a Rural Background
• Jordy Barrett who grew up in Pungarehu in South Taranaki – All Black
• Chelsea Bremner who grew up in Little River, Banks Peninsula – Black Fern
• Courtney Duncan who grew up in Palmerston, South Otago – Motocross
• Georgina Ponsonby who grew up in Feilding – Black Fern
• Kerry Gowler MNZM who grew up in Raetihi and Marton – Double Olympian Coxless Pair and Women’s Eight
• Tim Southee who grew up in Whangārei – Black Cap
The Norwood Supreme New Zealand Rural Sportsperson Award will be announced on the night.
The awards will be presented at a sold-out gala function at Awapuni Racecourse on March 10 during the Ford Ranger New Zealand Rural Games Weekend in Palmerston North.