Three British sailing coaches have been recognised at the star-studded 2016 UK Coaching Awards, held this week in London.
HRH The Princess Royal was guest of honour at the annual awards evening, organised by Sports Coach UK and which celebrates organisations and individuals who have demonstrated outstanding coaching success over the past 12 months.
Matt Howard and Joe Glanfield, coaches to Olympic Champions Giles Scott and Hannah Mills-Saskia Clark, were awarded Mussabini Medals along with fellow Rio gold medal-winning coaches across the Olympic and Paralympic sports, while the RYA’s Laser 4.7 UK National Head Coach Martin Boatman was named the Performance Development Coach of the Year.
Boatman was nominated for his work with young sailors in the challenging junior Laser 4.7 class, achieving great success particularly with his female charges who have dominated major championships in 2016.
Under Boatman’s tutelage, Great Britain won u16 European Championship gold and u16 World Championship bronze in the Laser 4.7 this year, and had four sailors inside the top ten at both events, while he also supports and mentors coaching colleagues as a valued leader within the RYA Pathway team.
“Receiving this award is a huge honour and something I really didn't expect,” said Boatman on learning of his award.
“2016 was a great year for the Laser 4.7 squad, particularly the girls. We all worked very hard over the winter which resulted in a summer we were very proud of. Although it's my name on the trophy it really represents the outstanding work of a large number of coaches, parents and support staff who I owe a huge thank you.
“I'd also like to thank the sailors themselves whose attitudes to their development make coaching a real pleasure. Looking forward we've got an excellent foundation to build on which hopefully will result in many more medals for our GBR 4.7 sailors.”