Best in the borough honoured at Rugby Sports Awards - The Rugby Observer

Best in the borough honoured at Rugby Sports Awards

Rugby Editorial 6th Apr, 2023   0

THE BEST of the borough’s sporting talent – from Olympians to volunteers – have been honoured at the Rugby Sports Awards.

The award ceremony at the Benn Hall celebrated the best sporting achievements of 2022, while honouring the unsung heroes who help keep grassroots sport thriving in and around Rugby.

Awards were presented to 73 Rugby athletes, with prizes ranging from £100 and free gym membership to £7,000 financial support and access to physiotherapy and all GLL leisure centres.

Guests at the awards ceremony heard from guest speaker Kimberley Woods, of Rugby Canoe Club, who was presented with the 2022 Rugby Sportswoman of the Year award – the second consecutive year she has won the title.

Kimberley Woods was guest speaker at the Rugby Sports Awards, and also won the Sportswoman of the Year award, presented by Rugby Borough Council Chief Executive Mannie Ketley.

Kimberley is currently ranked number two in the world in the new Olympic discipline of Kayak Cross, winning Silver at the World Championships in Germany and Gold at the World Cup in Slovenia. She also competes for Great Britain in the canoe slalom, and made the final at the Tokyo Olympics in 2021.

The Sportsman of the Year award went to Kian Taylor-Jackson. Kian competes domestically and internationally as a member of the IDO street dance squad.

In 2022, Kian became British champion in a number of categories, including breakdance. Travelling to North Macedonia, he secured a European Championship before taking second place in the World Championships in Austria. In July, Kian also performed as part of the opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Games.

Young Sportsman of the Year was presented to promising young sailor Joe Rowe, currently World Champion in the Topper dinghy category.

Tom Kittendorf, Rugby Borough Council Chief Officer for Leisure and Wellbeing, said: “The Rugby Sports Awards are a celebration of some of Rugby’s best sporting talent. Importantly, they also support emerging talent with training and physiotherapy, so they really do make a difference to the borough’s sporting success.

“This year’s winners once again demonstrate the depth and breadth of sporting success in our borough, and all the nominated athletes can be proud of their achievements in 2022. With some great talent, and dedicated coaches, the future of sport in Rugby looks extremely promising.”

The winners of the main category awards were:

  • Unsung Hero ‘Volunteer’ Award: Jamie Lambert, Rugby Lions RFC Minis and Juniors
  • Mark Gallagher Memorial Award for Coach of the Year: James Wright, Rugby and Northampton Athletics Club
  • Simon Warwood Memorial Award for Young Team of the Year: Rugby and Northampton Athletics Club Lower Age Group YDL Team
  • Lion Geoff Thompson Award for Young Volunteer of the Year: Finley Hughes, Rugby Trampolining Club
  • Young Sports Person of the Year Award: Joe Rowe
  • Club of the Year Award: Rugby Artistic Swimming Club
  • Sportsman of the Year Award: Kian Taylor-Jackson
  • Sportswoman of the Year Award: Kimberley Woods, Rugby Canoe Club
  • Lifetime Achievement Award: Jon Hughes, Draycote Water Sailing Club

Visit for more information on the winners.

Buy Photos

Buy photos online from the Rugby Observer newspaper.

Business Directory

From plumbers, to restaurants, we can provide you with all the info you need.

Reader Travel

Check out all of the latest reader travel offers to get your hands on some free gifts.


Find a career you'll love with our free career finder website.