With the nomination period for the Birmingham Sports Awards having finally closed on August 1 we are now well into the judging process.
The judges will deliberate carefully over the coming days and weeks and produce a shortlist of three finalists for each of the thirteen award categories.
The nominees and entrants are now on tenterhooks to discover whether they are in with a shout for honours.
All the tension and suspense will come to a head on the evening of September 18 at what looks set to be a stunning ceremony to be held at Aston Villa Football Club.
The Awards offer us a wonderful opportunity to recognise the achievements of many of the West Midlands most accomplished sportspeople and to celebrate all that is best in the region’s sporting environment.
The Birmingham Sports Awards are indebted to the people, businesses and local organisations who lend their support.
In recent weeks we have taken the time to speak with many of the event’s sponsors and get their take on what the Awards represent in our area.
This week, Major Richard Carney MBE, general manager of Dallas Burston Polo Club , who are sponsoring the Professional Young Sportsperson of the Year Award for a second consecutive year, gave us his view.
He was very clear that the Birmingham Sports Awards are a force for good in the region, saying: “Such awards are great for boosting morale amongst communities, creating stories of inspiration and giving disadvantaged children opportunities that they wouldn’t normally have.”
“They can have a positive effect on the confidence of an area and if more kids can get involved in sport as a result, then they will not only get fit but also learn skills that will help them in real life.
“By showing our support for sportsmen and women we create role models for our children and give them a sense of what can be achieved through hard work and dedication.”
Listening to the major, it was very easy to understand why Dallas Burston Polo Club chose to get involved again.
He explained, “Following on from the success last year, we felt that the event was so well represented and it was a natural progression to get involved with such an important event once again.
“Birmingham and the West Midlands both have a rich sporting pedigree and we think it is important to celebrate the achievements of all those involved, from the sportspeople themselves to the people who work so hard behind the scenes.”
Electing to sponsor the Professional Young Sportsperson of the Year Award again was also a straight forward decision.
“We wanted to sponsor this particular category for a second year since DBPC has both historically supported and continues to support children and ultimately the stars of tomorrow.
“We hold regular group tuition sessions for youngsters, so as to encourage fresh new talent into polo, whilst we continue to keep a watchful eye on opportunities to nurture positive growth.”
The Major’s final point illustrates just how important it is for our youngsters to get involved in sport and use it to learn about life.
He put it simply, explaining: “Sport can teach people to work in teams and encourages discipline, which is vital in today’s business environment.
“Life and work is competitive in the same way sport is.”