St Clair Sisters Claim Team of the Year at Otago Sports AwardsMonday, 13 May 2013
St Clair Surf Life Saving Club sisters Steph and Carla Laughton have been named 'Team of the Year' at the ASB Otago Sports Awards at the Dunedin Town Hall over the weekend.
The St Clair surf lifesaving crew made up of Steph and Carla, along with teammate Natasha Scott, won the Aotea Electric Team of the Year award ahead of the Otago Volts cricketers and the Otago netball team.
To become a finalist in the Team of the Year category, a team had to be a national champion- the girls not only won the Otago, Canterbury, South Island, North Island and National titles for the second consecutive year but they also won gold in every race, bar one, across the entire year.
The sisters have also shined on an international stage, having won gold in the tube rescue event at the 2012 World Lifesaving World Championships in Adelaide
Steph says it was a bit of a surprise to win the award. "We were up against the Volts that won the national Twenty20 and the Otago netball team who won the National Provincial title for the first time in 14 years. So it was very exciting, especially for a sport that is not as well recognised as some of the bigger mainstream sports," she says.
The awards are organised by Sport Otago to recognise sporting excellence across the province. The qualifying period was April 2012 to March 2013.
The night's supreme award, ASB Sportsperson of the Year, went to Olympic gold medalist Hamish Bond. He also took out Sportsman of the Year with Alison Shanks taking out Sportswoman of the year.
List of winners at the 2013 Otago Sports Awards:
- ASB Sportsperson of the Year, Hamish Bond
- Speight's Sportsman of the Year, Hamish Bond
- Newstalk ZB Sportswoman of the Year, Alison Shanks
- Otago Daily Times Class Act Junior Sportsman of the Year, Andrew Whyte
- Otago Daily Times Class Act Junior Sportswoman of the Year, Sophie Williamson
- Aotea Electric Team of the Year, St Clair Surf Life Saving 'Team Black'
- Air NZ Coach of the Year, Vaughn Johnson
- Delta Innovation in Sport, Upper Clutha Tracks Trust
- Otago Polytechnic Services to Sport Awards, Neil Burrow
Carla Laughton, Steph Laughton, Natasha Scott and Antony Mason at the ASB Otago Sports Awards on Friday night.
Photo taken by Brent Matehaere