Sammi Kinghorn is first para-sport athlete to win top award

Samantha Kinghorn celebrates winning the Women's 200m T53 Final and setting a new world record at the IPC World ParaAthletics Championships in London.  Picture: Lynne Cameron/Getty Images for Ottobock
Samantha Kinghorn celebrates winning the Women's 200m T53 Final and setting a new world record at the IPC World ParaAthletics Championships in London. Picture: Lynne Cameron/Getty Images for Ottobock
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Wheelchair racer Sammi Kinghorn was named Scottish Sportsperson of the Year at the Team Scotland Scottish Sports Awards in Edinburgh last night.

She is the first para-sport athlete to take the top award in its 15-year history. Past winners include Sir Chris Hoy, Sir Andy Murray and Dame Katherine Grainger.

Kinghorn enjoyed a brilliantly successful World Para-Athletics Championships in London in the summer.

She broke her own world record to win gold in the 200 metres before going on to take a second gold in the 100m and bronze in the 400m.

Kinghorn also won the Para-Sport Athlete of the Year award at the ceremony at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre, beating off challenges from swimmer Danielle Joyce and tennis player Gordon Reid.

Kinghorn said: “When you see yourself up against great athletes like Danii Joyce and Gordon Reid, you don’t expect to win. It’s amazing to even be thought of as one of the best para-sport athletes in Scotland but to actually win is incredible, and then to win Scottish Sportsperson of the Year as well, that’s something I never thought of. To hold the trophy and Andy Murray’s name is on it and all the greats of Scottish sport, knowing that your name is going to be there too is really special.

“I don’t think there’s been a para athlete that’s won it in the past, so be to be the first is pretty cool. It means the world to me to have my family and friends here tonight. To have the people there who have stood by you through all the hard times and all the good times, and to know that they’ll always be there for you, that’s really special.”

Kinghorn, 21, was left paralysed after an accident on her family’s farm in the Borders when she was just 14.

While in the Spinal Injuries Unit at Glasgow’s Southern General Hospital her physiotherapist took her to Stoke Mandeville to try out disability sports, leading to her taking up wheelchair racing.

Her next major event is the 2018 Commonwealth Games at Gold Coast where she considering making the step up to marathon.

There was also success last night for middle distance runner Laura Muir who was named Female Athlete of the Year, with and her coach Andy Young lifting the Coach of the Year award.

Swimmer Duncan Scott’s gold and silver medal winning performances in the relays at the World Swimming Championships gave him the nod for Male Athlete of the Year over a strong shortlist which included 2016 winner Sir Andy Murray.

The Murray family did have an award winner however, with Judy Murray OBE named Team Scot of the Year in recognition of her relentless drive for equality in sport and an active lifestyle for all children.

Boxer Josh Taylor won an award for Sporting Moment of the Year for his stunning win over the previously unbeaten Ohara Davies to defend his Commonwealth Title belt.

Rugby great Gavin Hastings was honoured with the Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition of an outstanding playing career which saw him win 61 caps, including 20 as captain

World and European Junior Canoe Sprint champion Ieuan James was the winner of the Sir Peter Heatly Trophy as Young Athlete of the Year.

The Scotland Women’s Football national side took Team of the Year reflecting their successful Euro 2017 qualifying campaign which saw them win seven of their eight games and take their place at their first ever major international championship.

There was also a Special Recognition Award for Celtic following their historic season which saw them unbeaten in domestic competition as they won the fourth treble in their history.

2017 Team Scotland Scottish Sports Awards Winners

Scottish Sportsperson of the Year – Emirates Lonsdale Trophy: Sammi Kinghorn, Para-Athletics

Male Athlete of the Year – sponsored by Brand Oath: Duncan Scott, Swimming

Female Athlete of the Year – sponsored by The Scottish Sun: Laura Muir, Athletics

Para-Sport Athlete of the Year – sponsored by CGI: Sammi Kinghorn, Para-Athletics

Team of the Year – sponsored by PSL / Canterbury: Scotland Women’s Football

Coach of the Year – sponsored by University of Stirling: Andy Young, Athletics

Sporting Moment of the Year – sponsored by Glasgow 2018 European Championships:

Josh Taylor defends his Commonwealth Title belt against England’s Ohara Davies

Young Athlete of the Year – Sir Peter Heatly Trophy, sponsored by City Legacy Homes: Ieuan James, Canoe Sprint

Volunteer of the Year – sponsored by Eden Mill: Richard Brickley MBE, Disability Sport

Governing Body of the Year – sponsored by Edinburgh International Conference Centre: Scottish Athletics

Community Hub, Club or School of the Year – sponsored by sportscotland: Drumchapel Community Sports Hub

Games Legacy Award – sponsored by Legacy 2014 / City Legacy Homes: Active East – Scottish Sports Futures

Lifetime Achievement – sponsored by Commonwealth Games Scotland: Gavin Hastings OBE, Rugby

Team Scot of the Year – sponsored by Aberdeen Standard Investments: Judy Murray OBE, Tennis

Special Recognition Award – sponsored by Commonwealth Games Scotland: Celtic Football Club