Two young athletes from Yorkshire and Aberdeenshire have been awarded the ‘100% me’ Spirit of the Games Award for their performances at the Sainsbury’s 2012 School Games, which took place in and around the Olympic Park from 7-9 May.
Chris Stephenson from Osbaldwick and Donald Clark from Maryculter were chosen from 1,600 athletes competing at the three-day multi-sport event.
The ‘100% me’ programme is run by UK Anti-Doping, the UK’s national anti-doping organisation. ‘100% me’ champions clean sport and supports athletes to reach their potential through the values of hard work, determination, passion, respect and integrity.
Nominations for the award were made by competing athletes and School Games staff for those competitors they thought demonstrated the core values of ‘100% me’. The eventual winners were selected by a panel of judges led by Olympian and World Bobsleigh Champion Nicola Minichiello.
Athletes were judged on the following criteria:
- Treating others with respect and fairness
- Competing within the rules and respecting officials and their decisions
- Demonstrating fair play at all times
- Respecting differences between others at the Games
- Taking responsibility for their actions at all times.
Chris, who represented England North East in the hammer throw, won Monday’s award for going out of his way to help an athlete with a visual impairment.
England North East Athletics Team Manager Karen Buck said: “Chris has displayed incredible friendship towards his team mate. The level of maturity and responsibility he has shown is exemplary and far in advance of his years.”
Donald, who played volleyball for Scotland East, was given Tuesday’s award for showing great respect to officials and opponents, as well as taking responsibility for his actions. After spending the last two years training to be a part of Scotland East’s squad, Donald was finally picked to be in the starting six at the 2012 School Games. However, he suffered an injury early in the competition and withdrew himself in order to ensure his team had the best possible chance of winning. Nonetheless, he continued to play an integral role from the sidelines.
Scotland East Boys Volleyball Team Manager Heather Darling said: “Had it not been for the School Games, volleyball would be minus one valuable character to drive our sport forward. We have been honoured to have such an ambassador in our group.”
Representatives from UK Anti-Doping attended the Games to provide athletes, parents and support personnel with anti-doping guidance through the ‘100% me’ programme.
UK Anti-Doping Director of Communications and Education Nicola Newman said: “Chris and Donald have both demonstrated the true values of ‘100% me’, and are deserved winners of the award.
“The athletes we talked to took away important information such as how to check their medications for banned substances. The School Games provide an opportunity to raise awareness about the importance of clean sport with the potential future stars of sport in this country.”