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January 2016

December 2015

November 2015

October 2015

September 2015

August 2015

July 2015

June 2015

> Fife Archer wins
   British Title

> Fife Junior Makes
   Steady Progress

> Inclusive PE Project
   in Fife

> Four Fife Athletes Called
   up to Academy

> Fife Selection for 2015
   Inter Area Bowls

> 2015 Fife Lawn
   Bowls Championships

> Performance Disability  
   Swimmers in Form

> Fife Athlete Wins
   Highland Games Race

> First Win for Fife School
> Fife Athlete Joins
   UK Programme

> Wheelchair Rugby
   Comes to Fife

> Fife Young Volunteers
   Receive Awards

> Fife Swimmer Competes
   in Open Water Event

> Fife Athletes has
   Clear Goals 

> National Title for
   Ian Green

> World Champion Leads
   Fife Challenge

> 2015 Glenrothes Road
   Running Festival

> Fife Junior Team
   Athletics Champions

> Largest Entry for
    Fife Championships

> Fife Throwing Frames
   Make a Difference

> Fife Newcomer Makes
   Major Impact

> Fife Athlete Role Model
> Fife Swimmers Honoured
> Retiring Fife
   Teacher Recognised

May 2015

April 2015

March 2015

> Fife Swimmer Excels
   in Loughborough

> Kirkcaldy and Central
   Fife Awards Evening

> Another Sad Loss to
   the Movement

> Three Titles for
   Fife athletes

> Fife athlete on Target
   for London 2015

> Kilmaron Receive
   Badminton Bag

> Kieran Scoops West
   Fife Award

> Enormous Fife
   Interest in London 2015

> Fife Athletes in Top
   Form at Sportshall

> Team Scotland Call
   Up for Craig

> Two World Titles
   for Fife Bowlers

> 2015 Fife Table
   Tennis Championships

2015 Annual Sports
   Festival Final Event
> Fife 7s League
   Finishes on a High
> Easter Holidays
> Fife Hosts
   South Lanarkshire
   Leisure staff
> World Champion
   wins St Andrews
   Kilrymont Award
> 2015 Fife Football and
   Unihoc Championships
> Fergus is Fife
   Top Marksman
> Wheelchair Curling
   Success
> Stefan has Switched
   to Para Triathlon
> Fife Swimming
   Championships

February 2015

> Two Medals for
   Fife Bowlers

> Fife Athlete Heading
   to London

> Fife’s top Water Skier
> Fife Rotaries Support
   Disability Sport

> Glenrothes Strollers take
   on National Team

Inclusive PE Training
  
for Kilmaron Staff
> Preparing for the Fife 
   Championships
> 2015 Calendar of Events
> Disability Bowlers Head
    to New Zealand
> First Ever Fife Para 
   Rower
> Fife Swimmer Sets
   Sights on Texas
> Disability Judo Comes
   to Fife

> Fife 7s Football
   League Series 2

> Fife Loses a Fine Athlete
> Big Lottery support for
    learning in Fife

> Bowls Scotland
   Conference

> Preparing for the
   Fife Championships

> Boccia Leaders
   Workshop Fife

> Fife Inclusion Training
   at Auchmuty HS

Three National Titles
   for 
Fife Bowlers
> Good Start to Year for
   Fife Athlete
> Athletics in Fife Has
   Never Been Stronger
> East Cross Country
   Series 3
> Early Notice DSF AGM

January 2015

December 2014

November 2014

> Most Successful Fife    
   Championships to date

> Big Lottery support
   for learning in Fife

> A very special
   athletics partnership

> Sad News
> Fife Disability
   Badminton Development

> Strong Fife Junior
   Team Performances

> Scottish Disabled
   Sports Trust (SDST)

> Perth 2014 - an inspired
   Branch Conference

> The Best Fife Juniors
    in Years

> Fife Junior
   Swimmers Heading
   for Grangemouth

> Fife swimmers make
   significant contribution

> DSF signs up another
   new coach

> Disability Inclusion
   Training Workshop

> Balwearie HS 2014
   Champions

> Fife athletes in
   form in Edinburgh

> Fife Carpet Bowls
   Championships

> Strong Fife Junior Team
> St Columba's pupils
   raise £3000

> Team Scotland Selected
   for New Zealand

> Coach Education Update

October 2014

September 2014

August 2014

July 2014

June 2014

> 2014 Fife Lawn Bowls
   Championships

> Badminton Workshop
   Two

> Scottish Performance
   Swim Meet Aberdeen

> Craig Wins Ian Watson
   Trophy

> Fifth Place for Owen in
   Holland

> Fife cheers on the
   Queen’s Baton Relay

> DSF Benefits from Hippo
   Parade 2014 

> Top Fife Junior Athlete
West Fife Team
   Champions

> Kintore Trophy Winners

> DSF Summer Holiday
   sports provision

> Team Sloan Support for DSF
> Trust and DSF Work Together to
   Promote Holiday Sport
> Fife Swimmer selected for Team
   Scotland
> Inclusive Highland Games in Cupar
> 2014 Brodie Gala
> Leading Championships Athletes
Lifetime Achievement Award
   for Bowler

> Owen off to the Netherlands
Young Volunteers
   Recognised
Fife Athletes Excel at
   Scottish Juniors

May 2014

April 2014

March 2014

February 2014

 

 

Continued St John Support in Fife

Disability Sport Fife was well represented by the Chairman, President and GMC members at the Annual Carol Service organised by the Order of St John Fife. On this occasion the Service was held in St Andrews and apart from the usual programme of carols and prayer there were appearances by the Leuchars Military Wives Choir, Army Cadet Band and the Royal Scots Dragoon Guards Pipe Band. A memorable afternoon was enjoyed by all.

The Order of St John Fife has been a major supporter of Disability Sport Fife for almost 30 years. During that time Order members have supported DSF athletes and teams in so many different ways. Following the Carol Service Order Chairman Stewart Morris of Balgonie presented DSF Chairman Paul Noble with a cheque for £500 raised at a concert held earlier in the year at the National Trust property at Hill of Tarvit. 

 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disability Sport Fife

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Fife Swimmers Medal  in Manchester

The absence of Craig Rodgie and Craig Smith resulted in a reduced Fife swimmer representation in the Scottish squad that competed in the National Para – Swimming Championships at the Manchester Aquatics Centre in the middle of December.

GB international Lucy Walkup from Glenrothes and Stirling SC was dominant in the S15 class with a series of competent swims and first place finishes. The young Stirling University student never fails to deliver on the big occasion and her contribution to Team Scotland over many years has been exceptional.

Oliver Carter from Cupar and Carnegie SC continues to improve as an age group S10 swimmer and in Manchester he recorded a series of top two finishes in the 14/17 age group. This young Fife swimmer has improved immensely in his time with Cuper SC and now Carnegie SC and if commitment and determination produce winners then Oliver is guaranteed to go all the way.

 

Cara Smyth from Dalgety Bay and INCAS made a solid start in her first British Championships. Competing in the 14/17 S10 events she produced some very promising PBs and benefitted enormously from the experience. Steven McCormick from FINS competing in the S9 14/17 age group similarly made a positive contribution to the overall Scottish performance and gained an immense amount from the weekend in Manchester.

Photo: Lucy Walkup

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disability Sport Fife

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New Fife Team managers Appointed in 2015

Being a team manager of a Disability Sport Fife team is an important responsibility and over the past year the Association has invited a number of key DSF personnel to take on this responsibility for the first time. Over the years DSF has been able to call on very able individuals to step up to the plate and lead Fife teams in events all over the country.

In the past year DSF swimming coach Kay Maxwell took accepted the responsibility of leading the Fife senior swim team at the Scottish Senior Championships at Tollcross International Aquatics Centre in Glasgow. Jakki O’Neill from Woodmill HS was the most recent newcomer when she successfully led the Fife junior swim team at the same venue. Retired Robert Gough Centre staff member John Collins has taken on the responsibility of bowls team manager and successfully led the Fife team to victory at the Inter Region Lawn Bowls Team Championships in Glasgow and to success at the SDS Lawn Bowls Championships in Aberdeen. John will also act as team manager for Team Fife at the 2016 Carpet Bowls Championships in Dundee.

Caroline Clunie and Pamela Robson are now well established as the team managers for the Fife senior and junior track and field plus Sportshall squads and Anna Tizzard has many years experience of leading the Fife physically and sensory impaired swim teams. Wilma Catignani has committed many years of leading Fife’s table tennis squad and within our schools and clubs there are many staff and coaches who have represented DSF strongly in team sports and football in particular. As DSF looks forward to another competitive sporting year we do so I the knowledge that we have a strong team of squad managers to call upon who will promote the strong values of DSF.

Photo: Fife Team Manager Jakki O’Neill with her Woodmill HS swimmers at Tollcross. 
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disability Sport Fife

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Good Season for Fife Throwers

Well done to Mary Wilson F36, Michael Mellon F44 and Jonny Brown F33 who took advantage of the excellent Scottish Athletics Throws Grand Prix held in 2015. The GP offers throwers the opportunity to compete in their selected throwing events held under UKA and IPC Rules. Mary managed to compete in all four GP series events.

Scottish Athletics has circulated details of the GP Series scheduled for Craigswood Stadium in Livingston in April, June, July and September and already Disability Sport Fife throwers have signed up. Coach Gordon Loudon from Pitreavie is offering a significant amount of support to Michael Mellon and has agreed to assist Kenny Suttie and Mary Wilson in the season ahead. Kenny has returned to athletics after a 10 year absence and has decided to concentrate on seated throwing, following a successful career in wheelchair racing. Seated thrower Jonny Brown is coached by DSF coach David Brown.

Since the introduction of the throwing frames, built by REMAP and supported by Scottish Athletics there has been an increased interest in field events in Fife. It is still early days but a number of the athletes are already making an impression in the sport nationally.

Photo: Jonny Brown
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disability Sport Fife

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Sessions Timetable for Christmas and New Year

The last week for DSF sessions before Christmas will be Monday 14 to Thursday 17 December. 

Sessions will restart the first week after the New Year – Monday 4 January 2016.



Richard Brickley MBE
President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Disability Sport Loses a Great Ambassador

40 years ago I met Dave when I moved to Fife from the west of Scotland to take up a senior post at the Fife Sports Institute. I was inspired to move to Fife by the late Mary Urquhart, Assistant Director of Education. Mary introduced me to Dave. Dave took me under his wing and taught me so much about physical disability in particular during those early years. Initially our links were through wheelchair dancing and I quickly learned how talented he was as a dance choreographer. The Fifers wheelchair dancers became the Scottish and British champions in their class. Under Dave’s leadership and creative genius they produced free dances that were ahead of their time. Without being disrespectful to his fellow dancers, if he had been offered the opportunity to work with younger fitter dancers he would have produced even more memorable performances. Mary introduced Dave to wheelchair dancing and the story goes that she locked the door of the Fife Institute dance studio to prevent him from escaping the first time she suggested introducing dancing to her exercise group.

In the mid 70s Mary Urquhart, Bob Mitchell and Jean Stone planned an overhaul of Scottish Disability Sport (SDS). Mary and Bob were elected Chair and Vice Chair and Dave and I were in the wrong place at the wrong time and became treasurer and secretary respectively. We travelled all over Scotland together to meetings and became close friends. For over 25 years Dave meticulously controlled the SDS finances and prepared the way for the establishment of an SDS Finance Manager post. Dave’s bookkeeping skills were exceptional but without the benefit of the new technologies. Every page of every ledger was like his garden. Well ordered, colourful, tidy, well looked after and without a single error. Dave was meticulous and well prepared in everything he did. 

The way he delivered a bowl was poetry in motion and as a consequence of hours of practice and working out the most efficient delivery style for a wheelchair user.

They say behind every good man there is a good woman and within the Thomson household undoubtedly this was the case. Kathleen was always there for Dave and always willing to transport him wherever he was required as a committee member, teacher/coach or participant. Dave’s two children are exceptional and the arrival of the grandchildren offered Dave the opportunity to inspire a new generation of little people. Just as I learned so much from the master, so many others from within the family and wider community have been hugely influenced and inspired by this amazing and exceptionally modest man. Dave was a big man with a big heart and a very strong character.

Dave was a founder member of Disability Sport Fife and for almost 40 years he served as an office bearer. Dave was secretary for most of this time and Paul Noble, the DSF Chairman and I were due to meet Dave at home on November 3rd for a Finance and Policy meeting. He left the decision to call off until the day before the meeting, such was his determination and strength of character. Dave was incisive in the way he trawled through committee papers. Dave was sharp, intelligent and picked up things where others were less observant. DSF will never have a more loyal and committed volunteer and the office team has lost an invaluable sounding board.

On a personal note I have lost a dear friend of 40 years whom I admired enormously as a sportsman, dance choreographer, office bearer, gardener and family man etc. Dave was great company and on many a dark night travelling home from a meeting we solved the problems of the world and of course football. Dave and I met at a crucial stage in my professional career and without his support and guidance I would have struggled. Dave was willing to share and offer advice when appropriate. I shall always be eternally grateful for his loyalty and part of his legacy is the strong DSF we have today and the very professional manner in which SDS continues to organise its finances. Dave committed over forty years of his life to disability sport. That is one of the reasons why he was a very special, courageous and unique man. Dave asked for very little but offered so much to so many. Dave passed away peacefully in hospital early on Saturday 28th November. We shall miss him a lot.  
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disability Sport Fife

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A Very Special Fife Partnership

Since it was formed in 1977, Disability Sport Fife (DSF) has enjoyed a very special relationship with Rotary Clubs across Fife. Individual Rotarians and local clubs across Fife have supported the Association in its efforts to develop sport for participants of all ages and abilities with a physical, sensory or learning disability.  Rotary International has supported individual events and Festivals as well as providing critical funding to individual athletes who have the ability to pursue a career in performance disability sport.

DSF and Fife Rotary Clubs have come together in a new initiative that will provide support for individual athletes with a physical, sensory or learning disability who have demonstrated performance potential in sport.  Individual Rotary clubs make a contribution to a central fund which is dispensed by the Association of Fife Rotary Clubs.  Each year three bursaries will be awarded to individual disabled sports participants identified by DSF from east, west and central Fife. 

Chairman of the Association of Fife Rotary Clubs Derek Thomson from Leven Rotary Club, plus Secretary Anne Tait from St Andrews Kilrymont Rotary club and Treasurer Jim Slater from Dunfermline Carnegie Rotary Club met with Richard Brickley, President of DSF and the first three recipients of the new annual Rotary bursaries at the office of DSF in the Michael Woods Sports and Leisure Centre in Glenrothes. 

The first recipient of the 2015 Rotary bursary was Kirsty Brunton from Dalgety Bay who joined DSF in February 2015 and in a matter of months was identified as a swimmer with real performance potential.  Kirsty has a physical impairment and a history of involvement in open water swimming and sailing.  Having joined DSF she entered the Fife Championships and was selected to swim for Fife in the 2015 Scottish Championships in Grangemouth.  Kirsty made a real impression and was called up for the Scottish team for the 2015 Cerebral Palsy International World Games in Nottingham.  As a member of Team Scotland she recorded a significant number of personal best times and top three finishes. 

Martin Hunter from Burntisland competed for Team Scotland at the 2015 World Championships in New Zealand in February.  Not only was this Martin’s first World Championships but he went on to win the world title in the most difficult class for ambulant physically disabled bowlers. Martin has excelled in bowls throughout the season at local and national level and was paid the ultimate compliment by Scottish Disability Sport when he was selected as team captain for the Test Match against England in Nottingham in November.    

Ollie Carter is the youngest recipient of a 2015 Rotary bursary.  Oliver is 15 and a pupil at Bell Baxter HS.  Having been introduced to performance disability swimming through Cupar and District Swimming Club he recently moved to Carnegie Swimming Club for extra training time in his efforts to gain selection one day for Great Britain.  In 2014 Ollie was voted top swimmer at the Scottish Junior Swimming Championships and at the equivalent event in 2015 he won five open individual titles.  Ollie is identified as one of Scotland’s most promising junior physically disabled swimmers and with input from local support personnel he is improving with every competition. 

Each Rotary bursary of £250 will be used by the athletes to help further their career in performance sport.  DSF is fiercely proud of its long standing partnership with Rotary International and the edition of the annual sports bursaries is a most welcome new funding strand for athletes and players with a physical, sensory or learning disability involved in sport.  

Photo: L to - R Anne Tait, Ollie Carter, Jim Slater, Martin Hunter, Richard Brickley, Kirsty Brunton and Derek Thomson
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disability Sport Fife

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Burntisland Bowler Leads Team Scotland

The year cannot get any better for Para-sport bowler Martin Hunter from Burntisland.  In February of 2015 Martin won his first individual world title as part of the Scottish team that competed at the IBD World Championships in New Zealand.  Competing in one of the most competitive classes at the Championships Martin came out on top after a series of top class performances during the qualifying rounds and final stages.  Back home Martin had a wonderful season within his own club and in events organised by Disability Sport Fife (DSF) and Scottish Disability Sport.  His achievements during the year were recognised by at the annual DSF Awards Evening and Kirkcaldy and Central Fife Sports Council at their Awards Evening.

This month Martin was selected to captain the Scottish disability bowls team for a Test Match against England in Nottingham.  Martin was delighted to be invited to take on this role and true to form he led the Scots from the front.  Although losing to England 14-18, the overall the result was very much in doubt until the final session of four played over a weekend.   Scotland has never defeated England in a Test Match indoors but has a 100% winning record outdoors when the event has been played north of the Border.

DSF works in conjunction with a significant number of mainstream bowls clubs across Fife to provide inclusive bowls opportunities for players of all levels of ability with a physical, sensory of learning disability.  DSF is always on the lookout for new bowlers who believe that the disability bowls pathway in Fife and Scotland has something to offer them.

For further information contact Norma Buchanan, Administrator, DSF, Michael Woods Sports Centre, Viewfield, Glenrothes KY6 2RD / email norma.buchanan@fife.gov.uk / tel 03451 555555 Ext 444989.
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disability Sport Fife

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Fife Carpet Bowls Championships

The 2015 Fife Carpet Bowls Championships organised by Disability Sport Fife, supported by the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust, were held at the Michael Woods Sports and Leisure Centre in Glenrothes. The Championships identify the Fife team for the national championships organised by Scottish Disability Sport at DISC in Dundee in February 2016. 13 individual sections were contested and 150 ties played over four hours. Officiating duties were very competently handled by volunteer markers from bowling clubs within central Fife.

Highlights of the championships were the number of new bowlers from West Fife CSS who took part and the number of junior bowlers from Lochgelly HS who participated in the junior sections. Strong squads from East Fife CSS and Central Fife CSS contested the final stages of each section and international bowlers Billy Allan, Maria Spencer and Eleanor Clark were as always in fine form. Fife will undoubtedly field a strong squad for the 2016 “Nationals.”

Jim Donaldson from Auchtermuchty won the men’s wheelchair section and Neil Laughlin (Central Fife CSS) the restricted section for physically disabled ambulant bowlers. Billy Allan from Cowdenbeath retained the men’s open ambulant section and Darryl Stewart also from Cowdenbeath won the open men’s section for bowlers with a learning disability. The equivalent section for women was won by Haley Binnie from West Fife CSS.

Other section winners were Kevin Mustard (Central Fife CSS), Willie Christie (East Fife CSS), Stuart Carlin (Central Fife CSS), Julie Allan (East Fife CSS) and Christine Bannister (West Fife CSS). The three junior titles were won by Lochgelly HS pupils Jennifer Dun, Reece Martin and Michelle Harley.
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disability Sport Fife

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Fife – Paratriathlete

Stefan Hoggan from Auchtermuchty continues to progress as a Para triathlete with his sights fully focussed on the Rio Paralympic Games. Since being included in the British Triathlon performance squad based in Loughborough, Stefan has committed himself totally to improving all three Para triathlon disciplines. The young Disability Sport Fife member finished the season with a best performance finish of sixth place in the PT4 class in the WPE race in Detroit in August.

In January Stefan will head to Lanzarote for a two week British Triathlon training camp and thanks to support from the Scottish Disabled Sports Trust he will also be in Lanzarote for training in December. 

Winter training is incredibly important to all performance athletes. Warm weather locations offer so much more for Para triathletes.

Selections for Rio will be finalised in June of 2016 around the time of the British leg of the WPE race. For the first time the British race will be held in Glasgow, offering extra incentive to the Scots challenging for places in Team GB. Stefan is under no illusion that he still has a long way to go until he considers himself a major challenger for the PT4 place for Rio. As a cyclist Stefan improves by the week and he has always been a strong swimmer. The third discipline of running however is where Stefan believes he has to improve considerably and under new coach Luke Watson he is making steady progress.
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Fife Swim Champion Decides to Retire

Stefan is a Scottish Disability Sport (SDS) Academy athlete and recently he dropped into the DSF office in Fife to collect his new Academy kit. The track suit logos of SDS and Scottish Triathlon confirm the partnership that exists between the two Scottish Governing Bodies of Sport. Together they have helped Stefan and others to realise their ambitions in performance sport.

Disability Sport Fife (DSF) has lost its most successful ever male swimmer with a learning disability with the unexpected news that Craig Rodgie from Dalgety Bay has decided to retire from competitive swimming. As Fife swim team captain he led from the front and made a significant contribution to a series of Fife team victories at the Scottish Disability Sport National Senior Championships. Craig was a role model and inspiration to fellow performance swimmers in Fife and Scotland.

Craig was introduced to Disability Sport Fife when he was a member of Carnegie Swimming Club. He made his debut for the Scottish Team in 2007 and he has been fixture ever since. As recently as last year, Craig made a very significant contribution when Team Scotland lifted the British Team title in Manchester. Craig held the S14 British record for 50 metres freestyle until April 2015 and currently holds 7 long course and 7 short course Scottish records. Craig is currently number two in the all – time GB rankings for 50 metres freestyle and butterfly.

Craig was introduced to Disability Sport Fife when he was a member of Carnegie Swimming Club. He made his debut for the Scottish Team in 2007 and he has been fixture ever since. As recently as last year, Craig made a very significant contribution when Team Scotland lifted the British Team title in Manchester. Craig held the S14 British record for 50 metres freestyle until April 2015 and currently holds 7 long course and 7 short course Scottish records. Craig is currently number two in the all – time GB rankings for 50 metres freestyle and butterfly.

Craig achieved most of his successes as a member of Edinburgh University Swim Squad. At the 2009 European Championships in Reykjavik he won gold in 100 metres backstroke and two years later he recorded two fourth places in the equivalent event in Berlin in 100 metres backstroke and 200 metres freestyle. Craig was the only S14 Scot to be selected for the London Paralympic Games where he finished 9th in 200 metres freestyle and 12th in 100 metres backstroke. On home soil in 2014 Craig finished 5th in 200 metres freestyle at the Commonwelath Games.

Five times Paralympian and Chairman of DSF Paul Noble described Craig as a swimmer who “did not always perform to his best in the lead up to major events but always turned in a best performance when it mattered. At the trials for the IPC World Championships in Glasgow this year, although he didn’t qualify, he was the top GB swimmer in the 100m Backstroke with a lifetime best performance.”

Richard Brickley, President of DSF will always remember Craig as an exceptional swimmer “who despite his busy training schedule always found time to compete in the Fife Championships and captain Team Fife at the Scottish Championships. Craig raised the bar in S14 swimming in Scotland. Swimming has lost an exceptional young man and a great champion”

Craig was voted Fife disability swimmer of the year on numerous occasions and has been recognised in the past by Scottish Disability Sport for his contribution to performance swimming. Fife and Scotland has lost one of its most successful swimmers and he will be difficult to replace.
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Fife Athlete One Step closer to Realising his Dream

Derek Rae from Kirkcaldy and Anster Haddies has reached another milestone in his quest for selection for Team GB for the Paralympic Games in Rio. Derek has received news from Paula Dunn, Head Coach of the British Athletics Paralympic Programme that is being considered for the Paralympic Games in Rio in 2016. Although in no doubt that inclusion on the long list for the T46 marathon next year does not guarantee final selection, Derek is confident that he remains on track for serious consideration.

Derek's run earlier in the year at the IPC World Marathon Championships in London was his best performance to date and earned him a fifth place finish. Derek's London run was 5 minutes inside the GB Athletics Rio T46 marathon qualifying time of 2.45 and has earned him Lottery Funding for the period ahead. Derek is coached by Ron Morrison of Fife AC and together they have planned for this moment since coming together two years ago.



Following a motorcycle accident in Fife and exceptional support from the medical team at the Victoria Hospital in Kirkcady, Derek returned to running with the encouragement and support of his family and friends at the "Haddies". Introduction to Disability Sport Fife led to engagement in performance disability sport and Derek has quickly become an ambassador for the disability sports movement in Fife. Derek is also a fully involved member of Scottish Athletics with access to a wide range of opportunities and expertise.
 
Coach and athlete will plan meticulously for 2016 and a chance of a lifetime experience for a Fife sportsman who at one time believed his promising running career had come to an end. With wife Susan always at his side Derek has progressed and performed beyond all expectations. However he remains fully grounded and appreciative that there is much more to do before he pulls on a GB vest for Rio. For the moment the Rae family is quietly and modestly celebrating another landmark moment in the career of an exceptional athlete.

Following an excellent time in the Great Scottish Run Half Marathon of 71.56, Derek recorded a first finish position in the Templeton 10 in 58.05. Two fine performances at the right time of the season. Derek was then invited to the Scottish Sports Hall of Fame Awards Dinner as the guest of Richard Brickley of Scottish Disability Sport. The memorable acceptance speeches by inductees Sir Ian McGeechan OBE, Shirley Robertson OBE, Shirley McIntosh MBE, Kenny Cairns MBE and Sir Chris Hoy MBE have further inspired Derek to pursue selection for Rio 2016 with even more dedication and commitment. If selection is based on application and focus then Derek has every chance of realising his dream.
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Lara makes welcome return to Masters swimming

Three Carnegie Masters were in action at the British Masters Championships at Ponds Forge in Sheffield.  A small representation on this occasion meant that they were not in a position to enter for the relays, a regular source of titles in the past. Paralympian Lara Ferguson made a welcome return to the Carnegie Masters squad competing in the 35-39 age group where she completed her 50m breaststroke swim in 40:30 for ninth position.  Lara has been out of the water for quite some time and she was pleased to be back and reasonably happy with her time. Lara remains an amazing role model for Para sport swimmers.

Ashley Warrender from Leven competing in the 25-29 age group was the success story of the squad of three this year.  Ashley set new Scottish records in winning gold medals in 100m breaststroke in 1:13.30, 100m IM in 1:06.32 and 50m breaststroke in 33.71.  Ashley won gold in 200m IM in 2:24.86 and 200m breaststroke in 2:41.57.  In her final swim Ashley won silver in the 400m IM in 5:10.36 to round off an outstanding Championships for the Fife swimmer.

Yet again Janet McLean from Freuchie, competing in the 40-44 age group, had several outstanding swims.  Janet won silver in 200m butterfly in 2:37.67, silver in 200m backstroke in 2:36.90 and silver in 800m freestyle in 10:03.25 for a new Scottish record.  Janet concluded her championships with bronze medal swims in 200m freestyle in 2:18.11 and 400m freestyle in 4:53.47.

The next major meet for the Carnegie Masters will be the East District Open in Prestonpans on the 21 November where Janet and Ashley in particular will be expected to continue their winning ways in Masters swimming.

photo Janet (left) / Lara (middle) / Ashley (right)
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Fife Junior Voted Top Girl

The Scottish Junior Championships for sensory impaired and physically disabled swimmers, organised by Scottish Disability Sport (SDS), were held at Grangemouth Sports Complex on Wednesday 4th November. The Junior Swimming Championships are one of the longest running events in the national calendar organised by SDS.

Cara Smyth from Inverkeithing HS and INCAS and Ollie Carter from Bell Baxter HS and Carnegie SC were in excellent form with a full set of PBs in the boys and girls open class events. Each swimmer recorded wins in all five of their races and Cara rounded off her second SDS Junior Nationals by being voted top girl of the Championships. Both swimmers swim in the S10 class in national galas and will join forces in Team Scotland for the forthcoming British Junior Championships in Manchester.

Ruairidh Dumper from Carnegie Primary and Carnegie SC is one of the younger Fife swimmers with a very bright future in performance swimming. Every swim at Grangemouth was a PB and all but one race ended in a first place finish. 

Carnegie SC colleague Kerys Ballard from Duloch Primary ended the day with three wins from three races and a number of PBs.

Steven McCormick from Viewforth HS and FINS is now an established member of the Fife team and a member of the Scottish junior swim squad. Steven led from the front with a series of PBs and two national titles. Cameron Hemphill from Bell Baxter HS and Cupar and District SC contributed to an excellent Championships for Disability Sport Fife swimmers with PBs, one national title and two silver medals. Logan Harley from Rimbleton Primary is the youngest member of team Fife and in his only race he recorded a PB and won silver for 25 metres freestyle.

57 youngsters with a physical or sensory impairment qualified to compete at the 2015 Scottish Junior Swimming Championships in Grangemouth from area qualifying galas throughout the country. DSF selected seven young swimmers and is working with partners to try and increase the Fife representation at the 2016 equivalent event. There are now three discrete learn to swim sessions for physically and sensory impaired young swimmers in Glenrothes and Dunfermline and through time learners will become competitors. Disability Sport Fife is always on the lookout for new swimmers to compete for Fife and interested families should contact the DSF administrator  norma.buchanan@fife.gov.uk or visit the Disability Sport Fife web site hosted by the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust. www.fifeleisure.org.uk drop down menu health programmes.  

 

Photo:  Cara Smyth from Team Fife – voted leading female junior swimmer at the 2015 Scottish Junior Swimming Championships organised by Scottish Disability Sport. 

 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Fife Volunteer Recognised

Disability Sport Fife was delighted to learn that Pauline McConnachie was recognised recently for the immense amount of volunteering and charity work she has carried out over the years in Fife. DSF is proud to be associated with Pauline as an accomplished member of the DSF swim team and volunteer at weekly FUNdamentals sessions during the early years.

Pauline received a Business Award for her extensive charity and voluntary work which included setting up the Association Limbless in Fife and Fife Sailability. Pauline has also worked as a volunteer for different organisations, including the Children's Panel, Citizens Advice, Rights Fife and many others over the years.

Pauline is a perfect example of community commitment and DSF is proud to celebrate the recognition she has received from the Employment and Business Community. Pauline is a true role model for women and disabled people in particular. 
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Para Bowls Home International

Para Bowls World Champion Martin Hunter from Burntisland is one of 11 physically disabled bowlers selected by Scottish Disability Sport to represent Scotland in an Indoor Test Match against England in Nottingham on the weekend 13th – 15th November. Martin won his world title at the 2015 IBD World Championships early in the year in New Zealand.

 

Martin is the current Disability Sport Fife Branch Champion and Scottish champion in his class. He has enjoyed a very successful year to date in Para Bowls and also within his own Burntisland Bowling Club. Martin is one of a small number of established Scottish internationals in a team that includes several members of the Scottish Bowls Development squad.

 

Once again the Head Coach is Bob Dick from Cupar and he will be ably assisted Sarah Ewing from Dunfermline and Ron McArthur from Forth Valley. Together they played a hugely important role in a great Scottish team performance in New Zealand.

 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disability Sport Fife

 

 

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Fife Junior Swimmers Head to Nationals

The thirty-eighth Scottish Junior Championships for sensory impaired and physically disabled swimmers, organised by Scottish Disability Sport (SDS), will be held at Grangemouth Sports Complex on Wednesday 4th November. The Junior Swimming Championships are one of the longest running events in the national calendar organised by SDS.

 

The Junior Championships have involved memorable clashes over the years between emerging and established Scottish “juniors”. The Championships are an ideal environment for top quality competition between the nation’s leading young swimmers. A few swimmers who make their mark at Grangemouth go on to represent Scotland and sometimes GB on the international stage.

 

Steven McCormick from FINS will be up for the challenge offered by Adam Donnachie (West of Scotland) and the Fleming brothers from Lothian.  Oliver Carter who recently moved from Cupar SC to Carnegie SC will utilise his considerable experience to fend off the West of Scotland challenge from Kyle Hughes and Lewis Beagrie. Cara Smyth (Burntisland SC) made a major impact in her first championships last 12 months and over the past year has improved considerably as a competitive swimmer. Ruairidh Dumper and team mate Kerys Ballard from Carnegie SC made their mark at the 2014 Championships and are looking forward to turning in PBs again this year.  Cameron Hemphill from Cupar and District SC and Logan Harley from Disability Sport Fife swim session in Glenrothes have once again prepared well and will be up for the challenges presented at Grangemouth.

 

Over 60 swimmers with a physical or sensory impairment will compete at the 2015 Championships. SDS and its member Branches are focused on encouraging more children and young people to learn to swim, join a club or DSF session and follow in the footsteps of outstanding Fife juniors of the recent past like Lucy Walkup, Stefan Hoggan and Craig Smith. DSF has a strong track record of producing outstanding international swimmers and long may this continue.

 

Photo:  Oliver Carter from Team Fife – voted leading male junior swimmer at the 2014 Scottish Junior Swimming Championships

 

Richard Brickley MBE 

President Disability Sport Fife

 

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DSF Support from Russell Hogg Trust

The late Russell Hogg was capped 117 times for Scotland, won bronze at the Manchester Commonwealth Games, was ranked as high as eighth in the world and won twelve national titles. Russell was a very special Fife badminton player but sadly he passed away in 2012 aged only 44. To mark his commitment to sport, the Russell Hogg Trust was established and sports participants from throughout Scotland have been benefitting ever since.

Second year pupils at St Columba’s HS engaged with the Youth and Philanthropy Initiative (YPI) and researched a number of social issues including disability, homelessness and caring for the elderly. A team researching disability sports won the overall prize of £3000 and decided to donate their prize money to the Russell Hogg Trust.

Disability Sport Fife (DSF) was invited to submit an application to the Trust for consideration on how the money might be used to develop disability sport in Fife, a cause very dear to Russell Hogg. DSF suggested support for its weekly programme of sports sessions, money towards the purchase of a new racing wheelchair and individual grants for emerging Fife athletes.

The application was recently approved by the Trustees and the cheque for £3000 handed over by Julie Hogg, Chair of the Russell Hogg Trust, to Richard Brickley President of Disability Sport Fife.  
 

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Fife Junior Athletics Champion

Scott Birrell from Balwearie HS has been voted 2015 Disability Sport Fife Junior Athlete of the year and awarded the Gilbert Trophy. The Trophy was donated to DSF by Gil Cochrane, a well known Scottish Athletics official from Kirkcaldy and long term supporter of DSF Track and Field events. Scott won the award for his performances at the 2015 Fife Championship where he excelled specifically in field events.

 

Scott is the second recipient of the award, the first being Sam Fernando from Gateside and Fife AC who went on to win the British under twenty 1500 metres titles for athletes with a learning disability. Scott is regarded as having similar potential in throws and is being encouraged to pursue a career as a thrower with a mainstream Fife athletics club.

Scott was presented in school with his award by Anne Marie McMorrin the Principal Teacher at Balwearie HS in the Department for pupils with additional support needs. 
 

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Winning Start for Fife Athletes

41 athletes with additional support needs from Lochgelly HS, Balwearie HS, Woodmill HS, and Bell Baxter HS represented Fife in the first round of the East Series Cross Country Championships at Peffermill, Edinburgh.  The East Series event is well established on the Disability Sport Fife calendar of events and is organised by Scottish Athletics and Scottish Disability Sport.

Disability Sport Fife (DSF) is responsible for coordinating Team Fife and for the first time in 2016 will collaborate with Fife AC and Scottish Athletics to host one of four legs of the East Series at the Beveridge Park in Kirkcaldy.  Earlier this year DSF and Fife AC organised the first Fife Cross Country Championships for athletes with a disability and next year on Wed 25 May the Championships will make a welcome return to Kirkcaldy.

Athletes compete in the East Series in year groups over 1K, 2K and 3K.  The athletes who recorded the best year group time in Edinburgh in Series 1 and collected maximum points in the four Series Championships were:

1km Girls – Louise Harley (S3 – Lochgelly HS), Jennifer Paton (S6 – Balwearie HS), Leah Simpson (S4 – Lochgelly HS), Megan Wilson (S2 – Woodmill HS), Sarah Jennings (S1 – Woodmill HS), Taylor McDowell (S5 – Balwearie HS).

1Km Boys – Dean Bruce (S4 – Bell Baxter HS), Fraser Wilson (S5 – Lochgelly HS), Shakeel Ul Haq (S2 – Lochgelly HS), Arran Howe (S3 – Bell Baxter HS), Edwin Barron (S1 Woodmill HS).

2Km Boys – Alex Evans (Balwearie HS), Stuart Taylor (S4 – Balwearie HS).

3Km Boys – Brandon Eason (S5 Balwearie HS).

> Click here for results (2015 Race 1 East Series Cross country Peffermill)


Richard Brickley MBE
President Disability Sport Fife


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Fife Branch Loses a Great Friend

Disability Sport Fife enjoys a very special relationship with the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust (FSLT) and in particular the staff throughout the FSLT network. No staff member has been more loyal and supportive of DSF than Steve Donnelly from Coalton of Balgonie who passed away on Tuesday 20th October following a long illness. Steve recently retired from the FSLT through ill health but demonstrated throughout the final months of his life incredible determination, bravery and good humour.

During his time at the Fife Sports Institute and more recently in his office in the west of Fife, Steve provided an enormous amount of expert advice to DSF when the office base was developing into a major hub for DSF and Scottish Disability Sport members, volunteers and staff. Steve made a significant contribution to DSF marketing and publicity, major events, celebrations and presentations and the day to day office business. Steve acted at times as a DSF support member of staff and enjoyed a very special relationship with athlete members and volunteers of all ages and abilities.

Steve was often the man with the camera who recorded the special event or captured that special image that lit up the eyes of a featured athlete or player. Nothing was ever too much trouble and best practice was what he believed in and consistently delivered. Colleagues throughout the Leisure Trust will miss him terribly but attention to detail and high standards will be his legacy. 

DSF has lost a great friend but this popular, caring, kind, committed FSLT staff member will never be forgotten. At the 2015 AGM of DSF a special presentation was made to Steve for almost 25 years of support across all areas of the Associations’ work.

 Photo:  Provost makes a presentation to Steve at the 2015 DSF AGM.

 

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife


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Support West Fife Fencing Club

West Fife Fencing Club is currently in a voting battle for £22,000 of funding for their new facility. WFFC is currently in second place in its category, but the club needs to be in first place to get the money so it is trying to spread the message far and wide. Please could you help spread the word for WFFC? You can use email, social media or any other means at your disposal.  There is also information on the club's facebook page see link below.
 
> Click to visit the club's Facebook page

> Click to download information leaflet
 

All you need to do to support the club is to register your vote here:

https://foundation.onefamily.com/projects/wellwood-fencing-facility-community-centre/

Vote for:-West Fife Fencing Club

Then:-Send an email to westfifefencingclub@gmail.com to be entered into the draw for £100.

Disability Sport Fife is working with the West Fife Fencing club to try and resurrect an interest in disability fencing. Wheelchair fencing was one of the foundation sports of the Paralympic movement and it dropped off in popularity. DSF also hopes to encourage inclusive fencing across all impairment groups and the WFFC is similarly minded. 
 

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife

 

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East Fife Indoor Key Partner

For over two decades the East Fife Indoor BC invitation bowls competition organised by Disability Sport Fife (DSF) for players with a learning disability has been one of the most popular events on the DSF annual events calendar. Members turn out in significant numbers to officiate and the hospitality extended by club members and officials to DSF bowlers is second to none.

The East Fife Indoor Bowling Club has now gone a stage further in its efforts to promote inclusive bowls and open up its facilities to potential players with severe mobility difficulties. The East Fife club has responded to a request from Disability Sport Fife to locate a bowls buggy on the premises for bowlers who are unable to walk or have poor balance. This model of bowls buggy is used extensively in disability bowls and for the first time a buggy is located at the East Fife Indoor club.

The buggy is designed to protect indoor and outdoor playing surfaces and at the same time offer stability and independence for the player. 

Narrow traditional wheels can damage surfaces while the bowls buggy has wide wheels at the back and front that protect playing areas. When a player leans forward to bowl, the footplate at the front of the buggy offers stable contact with the rink.  When the player leans back to propel the wheelchair there is no contact between wheelchair and rink and the wheelchair buggy can be pushed smoothly. Players competing at the very highest level of international disability bowls have used the buggy very successfully in major competitions including the Commonwealth Games.

On a recent visit to the East Fife Indoor Club, DSF President Richard Brickley presented a buggy to Club President Mick Connelly and Committee member Dave Robertson.

Photo: Dave Robertson, Richard Brickley and Mick Connely

 

DSF Events Calendar 2015/2016
 

DSF is pleased to issue the full calendar of events for the year ahead. More events on the calendar than ever before and still a few SDS dates to be confirmed and added. You will note that this version has been numbered to help readers identify the most up to date version. As dates and events are added we shall update on the web site.

>> Click here to open

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disability Sport Fife

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Half Marathon PB for Fife Athlete

GB International athlete Derek Rae from Kirkcaldy and Anster Haddies has run a half marathon PB of 1.11.58 at the Great Scottish Run in Glasgow. Derek is thrilled to have lowered his time by just over a minute. Derek completed 5K in 16.57 and 15K in 51.03 to the satisfaction of his coach Ron Morrison of Fife AC. Both athlete and coach have been pleased with how training has gone these last few weeks and were hoping for a good run in Glasgow.

Since winning the Tour of Fife for the first time earlier in the year, Derek ran 1500 metres for Team Fife at the Scottish Track and Field Championships in Perth and set a record in the T46 class. His next September race was the Stirling 10K and this was followed up by the East Neuk 10 at the end of the month. Derek’s finishing position in Glasgow was a very creditable 28th, less than 10 minutes behind race winner Moses Kipsiro from Uganda.

Derek competed for Great Britain this year for the first time at the IPC World Marathon Championships which were staged as part of the 2015 London Marathon. Derek finished fifth in the T46 class in a time of 2.40.40 to record another personal best time. In the UK Rankings Derek sits as number one for class T46 in 1500 metres, 5K, 10K, half marathon and marathon.

Derek Rae has always been an active sportsman with a love of athletics and football in particular. A motor cycle accident completely changed Derek’s life but thanks to excellent NHS care and enormous support from friends and family he has become one of the leading physically disabled athletes in the world. Derek’s goal is to become a Great Britain Paralympian and his performance in Glasgow is a clear indication he is heading in the right direction. 
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Fife Athletes Compete in Great Scottish Run

Callum Sloan from Dunfermline and Susanne McGrath from Glenrothes had a successful outing at the Great Scottish Run in Glasgow. The two wheelchair athletes are part of the Disability Sport Fife wheelchair racing squad that is coached by DSF coach Pamela Robson in Dunfermline, Glenrothes and Kirkcaldy.

Callum completed his first London mini marathon this year and in Glasgow he finished third in the junior wheelchair race in 15.51. Callum was thrilled with his push and considered it another step towards becoming an international athlete one day.

For Susanne competing in the 10K of the Great Scottish Run was a whole new experience and her first major challenge since she took up wheelchair racing in March this year. Susanne wants to complete a half and full marathon in 2016 and the 10K in Glasgow was a stepping stone towards that goal. The push up St Vincent Street at the start of the race is not for the feint hearted but Susanne overcame that hurdle and finished the race in around 55 minutes. A remarkable achievement by the Fife athlete considering how little time she has been involved in the sport. 
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Fife Branch Fit for Purpose

Disability Sport Fife was one of the first Scottish Disability Sport Branches to be awarded MOR status by the parent body. The MOR is awarded against set criteria covering governance, safeguarding, financial management, coach and volunteer learning, competition, event representation, participant development and sports development.

This year DSF was reviewed once again following a three to four year period of successful operation. The Association was once again deemed to have satisfied the MOR criteria for a further three year period. Richard Brickley President of DSF received the new MOR certificate at the recent AGM of Scottish Disability Sport in Stirling. Guest speaker Peter Drysdale and Julie Hogg from the Russell Hogg Trust presented the MOR to Richard Brickley President of DSF.
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Balwearie HS Win Fife Schools Cross Country Trophy

Kirsty Fraser captain of the Balwearie HS DAS cross country team was presented with the new Russell Hogg Inter Schools Cross Country Trophy by Julie Hogg, wife of the late Russell Hogg. The Russell Hogg Trust was set up in memory of international badminton player Russell Hogg to support organisations like Disability Sport Fife to support disabled sports participants and develop disability sport throughout Fife and beyond. Three Russell Hogg Trophies are keenly contested by Fife secondary schools with Departments for pupils with special needs in track and field, swimming and cross country.

In addition to Kirsty, some of the Balwearie HS runners who competed in the first Fife cross country championships at the Beveridge Park in Kirkcaldy attended the presentation. The First DSF Cross Country Championships were run in conjunction with Fife AC and the 2016 championships will be run at the same venue on Wednesday 25th May. 
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Woodmill HS Win Fife Inter School Trophy

The thirty seventh Inter School Swimming Gala for pupils with additional support needs was held at Lochgelly HS and organised by Disability Sport Fife. Lochgelly HS has been the gala venue since the school opened in 1979 and the 2015 competiton had the highest entry, most events and largest number of relay teams in the history of the event. All swimmers were competing for points towards the team competition and the coveted Russell Hogg Trophy introduced in 2014 and won by Balwearie HS. In addition swimmers were competing for places in the Fife team for the Scottish Junior Championships organised by Scottish Disability Sport at Tollcross Aquatics Centre in November.

At the end of the 50 event competition the swimmers from Woodmill HS DAS topped the table with 161 points, 41 ahead of Balwearie HS DAS who finished 24 points ahead of Lochgelly HS DAS. Other participating schools were Glenrothes HS, Bell Baxter HS, Kilmaron and Buckhaven HS. At the conclusion of the gala the Depute Rector of Lochgelly HS Caroline Thomson presented medals to race winners and offered congratulations to all participants and organisers. Julie Hogg, wife of the late Russell Hogg, assisted with the presentations and handed over the magnificent Russell Hogg Trophy to the Woodmill HS swimmers. The Russell Hogg Trust has been a major supporter of disability sport in Fife and three Inter School Trophies now carry the name of this great Scottish International badminton player from Dunfermline.

Each of the Inter School relays was won by Woodmill HS with Balwearie HS finishing second in the boys event and Glenrothes HS finishing second in the equivalent girls race. Kirstie Mae Holgate from Woodmill HS was voted top girl and Dean Bruce from Bell Baxter HS top boy swimmer for their performances in the open events. For the first time all the lanes were filled for the girls relay and there were two heats for the boys relay. Disability Sport Fife is confident that Fife will select a large team for the Scottish Championships on 18th November in Glasgow.

Photo: Julie Hogg presents the Russell Hogg Trophy to the pupils from Woodmill HS Department for Pupils with Additional Support Needs.
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Marathon Woman has a Mission

Disability Sport Fife (DSF) is committed to encouraging and supporting participants with a physical, sensory or learning disability to achieve their full potential in sport.  In March 2015, mother of two, Susanne McGrath presented herself at the DSF office in Glenrothes and asked for support to complete a wheelchair marathon before she turned 40.  Time was not on Susanne’s side but her request was acted upon immediately and her sporting journey began.

Age nine, Susanne was involved in a road traffic accident which resulted in spinal paralysis.  The first task for DSF was to secure a racing wheelchair for Susanne and her first experience in that chair at Pitreavie Athletics Centre was an occasion to remember.  Initial trepidation quickly turned to over confidence as she took full advantage of her new found freedom of movement and speed. Susanne took to her racing wheelchair very quickly and it was not long before she was balancing on two wheels. Susanne was then paired up with DSF coach Pamela Robson and young Dunfermline wheelchair athlete Callum Sloan.  The DSF wheelchair racing group of the 80s and 90s was revived and over the past few months Susanne has gone from strength to strength with support along the way from her very committed family and in particular her father.

Susanne’s first major road race challenge came in the Glenrothes Road Running Festival 4K which went according to plan.  She then participated in the Fife Track and Field Championships at Pitreavie and other invitation athletics events around the country in the lead up to her first major event, the Glasgow 10K on Sunday 4 October.  Training sessions in Glenrothes, Pitreavie and the Beveridge Park, Kirkcaldy have prepared Susanne well for her major challenge of 2015.  The hope is that Glasgow will be another stepping stone in her quest to complete a marathon in 2016. 

Participation in major events like the London Marathon require wheelchair athletes to turn in performances below three and half hours for a full marathon and one hour and a half hours for a half marathon.  Juggling work, family and training is always difficult but Susanne is incredibly determined and hopes to increase her weekly mileage to the recommended target recommended by Scottish Athletics wheelchair racing coach Ian Mirfin. 

Team DSF is behind Susanne all the way and the Thursday run/push, jump and throws session for athletes with a physical disability at Pitreavie Athletics Centre is growing by the week due to the enthusiasm and example set by Susanne and Callum.  Susanne’s only regret to date is that she did not embark on an athletics career prior to 2015.  Best wishes to Susanne in her first major challenge of her wheelchair racing career.
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Fife Teenager has new Swimming Goals

Cara Smyth was born in Kirkcaldy but has lived most of her life in Dalgety Bay.  Cara joined InCAS Swimming Club when she was eight and she and her family have been very active members of the club ever since.  When she was seven Cara underwent surgery on her spine which subsequently led to her having to wear a back brace for up to 20 hours a day from age 10.  Similar to 2012 Paralympic swimmer Craig Rodgie, Cara is a pupil at Inverkeithing HS.

Swimming has played an important role in Cara’s life because of the freedom of movement and non-weight bearing experiences she has in the water.  The release from her brace for a few hours a day has helped enormously to build her strength, flexibility and of course confidence and self-esteem. 

Cara is a classic example of the power of sport in assisting young people to overcome physical challenges.  The role of an inclusive club like InCAS in helping young people to realise their dreams and aspirations is critical.  As a more senior swimmer with INCAS Cara has now turned her attention to teaching and encouraging other young people to commit to swimming.

Inspired by the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow the Smyth family approached Disability Sport Fife (DSF) about the possibility of Cara becoming involved in the DSF programme.  Cara is successfully coached by Garrie Roberts at INCAS and there was no need for coach support.  Cara was offered access to DSF swimming galas and Scottish swimming galas where Team Fife was represented.  Cara initially competed as a guest but when she was formally classified by British and Scottish Swimming as an S10/SB9/SM10 in the summer of 2015 her place as a performance disability swimmer was confirmed.  Cara is now a member of the DSF performance squad and successfully competed in her first Scottish Disability Sport Performance  Gala in the summer of 2015.  The best news Cara has received to date was from Scottish Swimming to tell her that she has been called up for the Scottish National Junior Disability Squad and her first squad training session was in Stirling on the first weekend in October.

Securing her classification and competing alongside other performance swimmers with a disability has inspired Cara to train even harder and set new goals within disability and mainstream swimming.  Cara has been welcomed enthusiastically to the DSF swim squad and she has already made her mark at the Scottish Championships as a member of Team Fife.  The story of Cara Smyth is yet another success for InCAS, a club that believes in inclusion and is happy to address the needs of all swimmers regardless of ability.  
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Fife Athlete Wins GB title

Sam Fernando from Fife AC continues to develop as a middle distance and distance Parasport athlete. Following an eighth place finish in the 2015 Tour of Fife, the Disability Sport Fife teenager has recorded his most successful track performance to date with a win and PB in Bedford in the Under twenty T20 1500 metres at the English Age Group Championships. 

In the past year Sam has made enormous progress under the guidance of Fife AC coach Ron Morrison. Last year 5 minutes was the target for Sam but against the leading T20 athletes in the country the young Gateside athlete ran 4.28 for a significant personal best performance. 

Sam joined forces with fellow performance athletes Derek Rae and Owen Miller in Team Fife at the Scottish Championships in Perth in September. The strong Fife squad of 122 athletes defended the Inter Area Team title and the Bob Mitchell Trophy.
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Balwearie Pupil First for Fife

Dylan Fotheringham from Balwearie High School has achieved a first for Disability Sport Fife (DSF).  Dylan has been selected by the Scottish Football Association for the 25 man training squad for players with a learning disability that is preparing for the forthcoming Home Internationals.  In time the squad will be cut from 25 to 18 but Dylan is recognised as the first young Fife footballer to be included in the Scottish National Squad since the Fife 7s League was established five year ago.

Balwearie High School ‘s department for pupils with additional support needs has a strong football programme and both their S1/S2 and S3-S6 7s football teams have been hugely successful in the Fife 7s League organised by DSF and hosted by Kirkcaldy High School.  Dylan can play both outfield and in goal but it is as a goalkeeper that he was nominated by the Balwearie HS team manager, Tom Hunter, for consideration for the National Squad.  It is as a goalkeeper that he has been included in the squad.  The squad meets at Forthbank Stadium in Stirling and in the photo Dylan proudly displays his national training kit.

DSF has been working with the Scottish FA at Hampden Park and the Scottish FA football development officers in Fife for some years now to develop a comprehensive programme of opportunities for players with a disability.  More players with a disability are now engaged in the Fife programme than ever and the introduction of the inclusive Fife Performance Football Academy has provided an opportunity for players with talent to progress along the football pathway.  The Scottish FA has a comprehensive programme of training and competition for Scotland’s leading players with a physical, sensory or learning disability.  
 

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Wheelchair Mobility Workshop

Go Kids Go are running our annual free wheelchair mobility-training workshop in Dunfermline on Wednesday 14th October. The workshop takes place at Lynebank Hospital, Halbeath Rd, Dunfermline, KY11 8JH. I have attached a flyer with details. 

On the workshop Go Kids Go teach skills such as coping with slopes and rough ground, back wheel balancing, road safety and emergency evacuation techniques. We also introduce wheelchair sport and encourage participants to get involved with local clubs. We bring extra chairs so mums, dads and siblings can get involved and join in the games. Whilst the objectives are serious the workshops are good fun! The young people will need to be able to self-propel to gain fully from the workshop however we often have a mixed range of abilities and find that everyone gains some new skills from the workshops. Children as young as 2 years of age have attended workshops and young people up to the age of 21 are welcome. 

Go Kids Go run free manual & powered wheelchair workshops and we also run practical wheelchair skills workshops for professionals and disability awareness workshops in mainstream schools. Go Kids Go work in partnership with a number of wheelchair services to deliver our training. 
 

Wednesday 14th October (9.30am - 3.00pm) Please bring a packed lunch

Lynebank Hospital, Halbeath Rd, Dunfermline, KY11 8JH

 

Tel 01482 887163 or email roy@gokidsgo.org.uk to reserve a place.

                                           

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife

 

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UK Success for Fife Bowlers

Some of the world’s leading visually impaired bowlers assembled this month at Erewash Indoor Bowling Club, Long Eaton, Nottingham for the UK Singles Championships for visually impaired bowlers. The championships were organised by Visually Impaired Bowls England and Disability Sport Fife was represented in Team Scotland by world champion Maria Spencer from Dunfermline and silver medalist at the recent Scottish Disability Sport Championships in Aberdeen, Eleanor Clark from Kirkcaldy.

Scottish team members were at a disadvantage because of the timing of the event. Scottish players are still very involved with the outdoor season whereas the UK Championships are played indoors. Fortunately the Scots rose to the occasion and none more so than Maria Spencer whose record over the past four years in all competitions is exceptional.

Maria enjoys a fierce rivalry in the B3 section with the Welsh Champion Sheila Kinch and on this occasion the competition went right to the wire. Going into their final games each player had three wins and a draw to their name. Maria had 25 shots difference to her opponent’s 40 points difference to lead the section. The outcome of their final matches was crucial. Not surprisingly each player won their final ties but Maria by 18 shots and Sheila by 2 shots. The overall shots difference came out 43-42 in favour of Maria and once again when the pressure was on the world champion produced a big performance. Another major title for Maria with husband Mike as her Director (guide) in the absence of Maria’s superb coach/mentor/director Sarah Jane Ewing from the Abbeyview Club who was unable to take time off work.

Fresh from winning silver in the Open Women’s section at the multi disability Scottish Championships at the Westburn Park in Aberdeen, team mate Eleanor Clark also had an outstanding UK Championships. With Scottish Assistant Team Manager Doreen Strachan as her Director, Eleanor won bronze in the B2 category. Eleanor had to defeat fellow Scot and double World Championships gold medalist Irene Edgar to win that medal. An incredible result for one of the most experienced and loyal Disability Sport Fife high performance visually impaired bowlers.

Team Scotland won the team trophy and once again Disability Sport Fife bowlers have made a significant contribution in a major competition involving Team Scotland.

Photo: Eleanor Clark (left) Maria Spencer (right)
 

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Team Fife Retains Bob Mitchell Trophy

In 2005 the Bob Mitchell Team Trophy was introduced to the Scottish national events programme in memory of the late President of Scottish Disability Sport who did so much to professionalise the Association and enable it to become a major player in international disability sport. Disability Sport Fife (DSF) athletes won the Trophy in the first year and have recorded five further wins up to and including 2014. West of Scotland have won the Trophy on four occasions prior to 2005. DSF selected a team of over 120 athletes with physical, sensory or learning disabilities for the Championships in Perth and travelled to the Fair City with high hopes of retaining the much coveted Inter Area Team title. The overall outcome of the competition was in doubt until the final relays but Team Fife pulled through by the narrow margin of two points to retain the title. Fife 74, West of Scotland 72, Forth Valley 48. Highland, Tayside and Dumfries and Galloway were fourth, fifth and sixth respectively.

Athletics in Fife has grown in popularity since the introduction of new training sessions across Fife and the engagement of some new coaches. The number of physically disabled athletes now involved in the Fife programme has increased significantly and the introduction of seated throws training has resulted in a dramatic increase in field events successes. Fife Team Managers Caroline Clunie and Pamela Robson were delighted with the number of Fife successes across so many athletics disciplines. This was the reason why the Bob Mitchell Trophy is back in Fife. DSF does not have a great record in relays but this year when it mattered the sprinters turned in some superb performances.

Team Fife was selected from results recorded by athletes at the Fife Championships at Pitreavie in June. Team members came from Balwearie HS, Lochgelly HS, Glenrothes HS, Woodmill HS, Fife AC, Anster Haddies, Dunfermline Track and Field, Pitreavie AC, Scottish Autism, West Fife CSS, East Fife CSS and Central Fife CSS. Team Fife had prepared well throughout June, July and August for the “Nationals” and individual coaches and teachers from member organisations had played a lead role. Mary Wilson and Robbie Simpson won three national titles and Owen Miller, Maurice Paterson, Tristan Rankin, Pauline Bryson, Andrea Spry, Philip Callander, Taylor McDowall and Kenny Suttie all contributed to the Fife points total by winning two national titles. Single title winners were Derek Rae, James Murphy, James Cunningham, Craig McIntyre, Dylan Fotheringham, Steven Thackery, Craig Donaldson, Liam Downie, Susanne McGrath, Erin Johnstone, Vicky Walker, Carrie Ann Smith, Hannah Moffat, Kyle Baxter, Stephen Russell, Graham Law, Ricky Ballingall, Craig Telford, Fraser Wilson, Jennifer Paton, Stephen Arthur, Michael Mellon, Irvin Wilson, Stacey Hynd, Nicola Eccles, Hannah Twaddle, Daniel Henderson, Jonny Brown and Ryan Peterson. 
 

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife

 

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2015 Fife Indoor Bowls Tournament

Each year the East Fife Indoor Bowling Club in Aberhill hosts the Disability Sport Fife (DSF) Indoor Bowls Championships for players with a learning disability. For over 20 years, players of all levels of ability have participated in the event and club members take on officiating duties. DSF considers the East Fife Club a key partner in its efforts to develop inclusive indoor and outdoor bowls across Fife. Most of the Fife bowlers who regained the Inter Area Test Match Trophy at Kelvingrove in August competed in the 2015 Championships.

For the novice players there is a short mat section and Stuart Carlin reversed the qualifying tie result and defeated Vicky Walker in the final to take the title. The Women’s B section final was an all West Fife CSS affair with Hayley Binnie defeating Christine Bannister by 8-5. Michelle Wallace from Central Fife CSS was in great form this year, convincingly defeating the defending champion Wendy Thomson from East Fife CSS by 9-1 in the Open final.

Fergus Wilson from East Fife CSS retained the men’s section C title by defeating his West Fife team mate Stuart Melville by 5-3. Robert McMahon from Central Fife CSS was involved in a closely contested B section final against Jimmy Ramsay from East Fife CSS but he eventually came out on top by 8-3.

Darryl Stewart from Cowdenbeath and Craig Donaldson from Central Fife CSS and Kinghorn BC were the stars of the Fife win in the Inter Area Test Match in Glasgow when they went through the competition undefeated in singles, pairs and triples. They met in the final of the Scottish Disability Sport Lawn Bowls Championships in Aberdeen at the beginning of September with Craig retaining the national singles title. At the East Fife Indoor Bowling Club they produced one of the most exciting Open indoor finals but on this occasion Darryl came out on top by 8-7. After three ends Craig led by 5-0 but by the seventh end the scores were level at 7-7. Craig was lying well in the deciding extra end until Darryl delivered his final bowl and snatched the win by 8-7. Undoubtedly one of the closest finishes in any DSF bowls tournament.

The Fife Indoor Championships bring to an end a hugely successful year for Fife bowlers with a physical, visual or learning disability. Major titles have been won by Fife bowlers in venues as far away as New Zealand and in iconic settings such as Kelvingrove and Ayr. Attention now turns to the carpet bowls season leading up to the Fife Championships in Glenrothes in November and the Scottish Championships in Dundee in February 2016.
 

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Double Title Wins for Fife Bowlers

Six single hand sections were contested at the 2015 Scottish Lawn Bowls Championships organised by Scottish Disability Sport at the Westburn Park in Aberdeen and Disability Sport Fife produced six of the twelve finalists. Disability Sport Fife (DSF) members won two Scottish titles and four runners up to the 2015 Champions.

World champion Martin Hunter from Burntisland retained his Scottish title by defeating fellow Scottish international Billy Allan from Cowdenbeath in the final of the ambulant unrestricted section for physically disabled and visually impaired bowlers. Craig Donaldson (Kinghorn) and Darryl Stewart (Cowdenbeath) were the outstanding bowlers when Fife regained the Inter Area Test Match title at Kelvingrove in August. In Aberdeen they met in the final of the section for players with a learning disability with Craig retaining the Scottish title following a very close match.



Eleanor Clark from Kirkcaldy is one of the most experienced and successful Fife bowlers with a visual impairment. Eleanor competes in the restricted section for visually impaired and physically disabled bowlers but this year she competed in the non restricted section winning an outstanding runners up medal.

Pamela Mitchell from Dunfermline made a hugely successful return to Team Fife for the Scottish Inter Area Test Match in Glasgow and she reproduced the Kelvingrove form in Aberdeen by finishing runner up in the section for bowlers with a learning disability. Pamela is a past British and Scottish Champion who now plays indoors at Headwell BC but rarely competes outdoors.

The other Fife bowlers who represented Fife in Aberdeen were Stuart Chesby (Dunfermline), Willie Harrison, Neil Laughlin, Kenny Dow, Kevin Mustard and Michelle Wallace (Central Fife Community Support Services), Gary Lindsay, Tanis Murphy, Julie Allan and Wendy Thomson (East Fife Community Support Services) and Gary Handyside (West Fife Community Support Services). Fife Team Manager John Collins who led the team in Glasgow was delighted with the overall performance of Team Fife at the 2015 SDS Scottish Lawn Bowls Championships. DSF has an excellent record in National Lawn Bowls and 2025 was no exception.

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife

 

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International Sport, Another International Win for Fife Paratriathlete

 

Alison Patrick from Dunfermline is British, European and World Champion in the PT5 class of Paratriathlon. Paratriathlon will be included in the Paralympic Games for the first time when the world’s leading athletes and players with physical, sensory and learning disabilities assemble in Rio for the Games of 2016.

Alison is one of the world’s leading all round athletes with a visual impairment. Alison excels in all three Paratriathlon disciplines and she has formed a very special relationship with her new guide Hazel Smith from Edinburgh. In July of this year Alison won her first PT5 European title in Geneva and she headed out to Rio in August with high hopes of notching up another victory in the Test Event for the Paralympic Games.

Only a small number of the world’s elite Paratriathletes were invited to compete in the Test Event. For Allison it was an opportunity to compete over the Games course and against the highest number of competitors this year. The day before the event Alison was informed that her new guide Hazel Smith was unable to compete because of injury. British Triathlon called up substitute guide Grace France and although behind for most of the race, Alison and Grace crossed the line in first place, over one minute ahead of the field.

Alison is coached by Jonathon Riall and has been a member of the World Class lottery funded British Paratriathlon squad since 2014. Alison previously swum as a junior and enjoyed a very successful track career as a middle distance runner. Alison competed at international level over 1500 metres and 800 metres and won an IBSA world title over the latter distance. Alison also represented Scotland at the World Mountain Trophy as a mainstream athlete. Alison is a physiotherapist in Fife and an exceptionally talented swimmer, cyclist and athlete.

Photo: Alison Patrick (L) and Grace French guide (R)
 

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife

 

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New DSF Sessions for Carnegie Leisure Centre

The weekly programme of sports activity sessions organised by Disability Sport Fife (DSF) for participants with a physical, sensory or learning disability is up and running following a short break for the summer holidays. The full schedule of sessions is available on the DSF web site hosted by the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust. www.fifeleisure.org.uk (find us in the health programmes drop down menu). Check out the DSF registration form.

There are now 30 sessions on the weekly timetable, independently organised by DSF or in conjunction with key partners Fife Council, Fife Sports and Leisure Trust or individual inclusive sports clubs. Sessions are held in Cupar, Cowdenbeath, Glenrothes, Dunfermline, Kirkcaldy, St Andrews, Newport, Falkland, Lochore and Lochgelly etc. The registration process is simple for potential participants with a disability of all ages and abilities. Check out the DSF web site for a registration form or contact the DSF Administrator Norma Buchanan by e mail norma.buchanan@fife.gov.uk or telephone 03451 555555 ext 444989.

DSF is pleased to report that two new sessions are now being offered at Carnegie Leisure Centre for junior participants with a physical or sensory impairment. On Wednesdays from 17 00 until 18 00, DSF coach Alex Bird is leading a FUNdamentals session similar to the well established session that currently runs at the Michael Woods Centre on Mondays between 18 00 and 19 00. Youngsters who are physically disabled or sensory impaired are introduced to a wide range of core sports skills in an appropriate setting, using adapted equipment where necessary. In addition there will be a new discrete learn to swim session for physically disabled and sensory impaired youngsters on Mondays from 17 45 – 18 15. The teacher for this new session is Katie McMillan.

Two new sessions have also just been launched at Kirkcaldy Leisure Centre in the gym and in the pool and DSF will be introducing other sessions across Fife in the months ahead in conjunction with major partners. The DSF programme is possible because of the support received from partners and the fund raising efforts of DSF supporters throughout Fife.
 

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Fife Swimmer Justifies Late call Up to Team Scotland

Kirsty Brunton from Dalgety Bay was the only Disability Sport Fife representative in the Scottish Team that competed in the 2015 CPISRA World Games in Nottingham in August.  The CPISRA World Games are an international multi-sport competition that offers athletes and players with cerebral palsy, traumatic brain injury or stroke the chance to compete against those with similar impairments in an international performance setting.

It is only a matter of months since Kirsty swam in her first Fife Swimming Championships but the progress se has made this year has been exceptional, culminating in a gold and two silver medals at the CPISRA Games for 400, 100 and 50 freestyle. Kirsty is now a member of Carnegie Swimming Club and being coached by John Szaranek. Prior to the CPISRA Games Kirsty set personal best times in the Fife Championships, Scottish Championships and Scottish Disability Sport Performance Gala.

Kirsty has cerebral palsy and swims in the S8 class reserved for swimmers whose impairment impacts on their functional ability in trunk and legs. In essence Kirsty swims without using her legs and has difficulty with trunk rotation, critical for efficient breathing. Kirsty reduced her 50 metres freestyle time by two seconds to 49.75 and her 100 metres freestyle time by five seconds to 1.51.63. Kirsty believed that 400 metres freestyle was her strongest event and at the Games she lowered her personal best by seven seconds to 8:44.38. 

 

Breast stroke is not her favoured discipline but she swam 2:27.73 to lower her personal best by around eighteen seconds. Great all round swimming by the novice competition swimmer who also excels in sailing and open water swimming.

Kirsty enjoyed immensely the experience of her first international and being part of Team Scotland. She was cheered on in Nottingham by her family and she has returned to Fife determined to train even harder and challenge for further honours in Scottish and British meets. Her times in her first competitive year place her around 50 in her class in the world rankings for freestyle. Kirsty is the first Fife athlete to receive one of the new Fife Rotary Clubs Sports Bursaries to assist with her competition fee as a member of Team Scotland.

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Photo: Kirsty with daughter Sarah – number one fan
 

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Significant PB for Fife athlete

Michael Mellon from Cardenden will be part of a strong Disability Sport Fife squad of physically disabled athletes that will compete in the Scottish Disability Sport National Senior Championships on Wednesday 9th September in Perth. Michael was in the RAF and a very keen rugby player and javelin thrower before he sustained a major tibia and fibula injury playing rugby. Because of all the leg pain he was experiencing Michael decided to progress with an amputation. 

As well as passion for field athletics Michael is a Scottish wheelchair rugby league international and a very successful player with Dundee Dragons wheelchair rugby league team.  Michael values the friendships he has made through this dynamic sport and with club members specifically. 


Michael is a member of Pitreavie Athletics Club where he is being coached by Gordon Loudon.  He is an F44 standing thrower and at the recent Scottish Athletics Senior Championships at the Aberdeen Sports Village, Michael threw a personal best of 40.00 metres for javelin. This was a significant improvement on his previous best of 37.29. The down side on the day was that he picked up a chest muscle injury on his final throw.

Michael is quick to acknowledge the enormous support he has received from BLESMA and Help for Heroes. Michael is an athlete with enormous performance potential and he has been warmly welcomed to the Fife high performance Parasport squad. Michael has aspirations of one day representing Great Britain and progress made this season indicates he is heading in the right direction.

 

Photo: Michael Mellon Athlete and Rugby Player
 

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Fife Volunteer Recognised by Scottish FA

Disability Sport Fife (DSF) has for some years now considered Glenrothes Strollers as a key partner in the development of disability football in Fife. Saturday mornings with the Strollers feature prominently in the lives of a significant number of Fife players with a physical, sensory or learning disability. DSF is proud to signpost players of all levels of ability to the club for coaching and other football experiences. Strollers teams have also been very successful over the past year in local and national football competitions.
 

As part of their extensive programme of football opportunities the Strollers are planning to take a squad of players down south to Newcastle to St James’s Park. As well as a football coaching session with Newcastle United coaches the Strollers with take in a Braclays Premier League match against Norwich City on Sunday 18th October. This follows on from an earlier visit to Old Trafford where the players met some football legends and visited some key Manchester United club landmarks. Scottish FA East Region Inclusive Football Development Officers Alan Roberts and Logan McConnachie would like to hear from any players who want to join them on this amazing football experience.


DSF volunteer Stephen Anderson is also a Strollers key volunteer. Recently the club nominated him successfully for a Scottish FA East Region Grassroots Award presented by McDonald’s and the Sunday Mail. Stephen was recognised as the Best Volunteer in Disability Football this year in the area and deservingly so. Stephen assists at DSF athletics sessions and the weekly Fife Sports and Leisure Trust multi sports sessions for adults with a learning disability. Stephen is very reliable, totally committed and hugely supportive of participants of all levels of ability with a disability. The Scottish FA decision was well received in Fife.

Photo- Stephen Anderson with his award.
 

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Fife Bowls Team Wins SDS Cup

The Scottish Disability Sport Inter-Area Bowls Test Match was added to the national events programme in 2010 to promote competitive lawn bowls for Scotland’s leading bowlers with a learning disability.  The inaugural event was held at the Beveridge Park Bowling Club in Kirkcaldy and organised by Disability Sport Fife. One year later Lothian Disability Sport played host at Fisherrow Links Bowling Green in Musselburgh and in 2012 it was the turn of Glasgow Disability Sport at Fairfield Bowling Club. Fife and West of Scotland had shared the honours to date with wins in years two and three and a shared title in 2010.

After an absence of two years the Test Match returned to Glasgow but on this occasion to the magnificent Kelvingrove Lawn Bowls Centre venue for the 2014 Commonwealth Games. Disability Sport Fife selected a strong team from results recorded by players at the 2015 DSF Lawn Bowls Championships at the Beveridge Park in June. Past national champion Pamela Mitchell from Headwell Bowling Club came out of retirement to strengthen the Fife team and newcomer Wendy Robertson from East Fife CSS answered a late call to substitute for more experienced players who were unavailable. Disability Sport Fife Bowls Team Manager John Collins headed to Glasgow with a team of determined and well prepared lawn bowlers.

Each team comprised of 12 bowlers, 6 men and 6 ladies, playing singles, pairs and triples and divided into A and B teams of three players. Fife bowlers were drawn against defending champions West of Scotland in session one and two and Team Lothian in sessions three and four. The final two sessions involved Lothian and West of Scotland bowlers and the overall result was in doubt until the final bowls were delivered in the final session. Fife regained the overall Inter Area Test Match title and won the SDS Cup with a final points total of 28, four ahead of Lothian and eight ahead of West of Scotland.

The Fife men’s A team of captain Craig Donaldson, Darryl Stewart and Gary Handyside progressed through the competition undefeated with two singles, two pairs and two triples wins to accumulate a maximum points total of twelve. The men’s B team of Gary Lindsay, Kevin Mustard and Craig Bernard had a tough time against the West of Scotland but managed wins against Lothian in pairs and triples to score four points.

The Fife Ladies A team of Julie Allan, Tanis Murphy and Wendy Thomson found the opposition throughout the day too strong but managed a superb victory against West of Scotland in the pairs to score 2 points. After two walkover ties against the West of Scotland, the Fife Ladies B Team of Michelle Wallace, Pamela Mitchell and Wendy Robertson played magnificently against Lothian and won the singles, pairs and triples for an overall total of ten points.

All but Pamela Mitchell and Darryl Stewart are members of East Fife CSS, Central Fife CSS or West Fife CSS. Most bowlers are members of inclusive Fife bowling clubs such as Windygates, St Andrews, Kinghorn, Cowdenbeath and Headwell. Some of the victorious Fife team members are now looking forward to the 2015 Scottish Lawn Bowls Championships to be held at the Westburn Park in Aberdeen on Saturday 5th September. 
 

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Two Fife Bowlers Selected for UK Indoors

IBD World Champion Maria Spencer from Dunfermline and her Disability Sport Fife team mate Eleanor Clark from Kirkcaldy have been selected by the Scottish Association of Blind Bowlers to compete in the UK Indoor Home International Championships at the Erewash Indoor Bowls Stadium Nottingham from 7th to 11th September. The Championships are organised by VI Bowls England and bring together the leading bowlers with a visual impairment from the Home Nations.

Maria successfully defended her B3 singles world title in New Zealand early in 2015. For the past four years she has been coached and influenced by coach Sarah Jane Ewing from Dunfermline who is herself a hugely successful mainstream bowler. Sarah Jane is based at Abbeyview BC in Dunfermline. Together they have formed a partnership that has taken Maria to the very highest level of international sport. In Nottingham Maria will be supported by husband Mike who has had an enormous influence on her sporting career to date.

Eleanor is one of the most respected Disability Sport Fife performance sportswomen. Eleanor competes in the B2 class and has a unique record in bowls competitions organised by Disability Sport Fife and Scottish Disability Sport. Eleanor has also enjoyed enormous success over the years in competitions where the opponents are sighted but have a physical impairment. Eleanor loves to compete and despite her many years in the sport she is always trying to find ways to improve.

Disability Sport Fife is proud to have two great ambassadors like Maria and Eleanor flying the flag in Nottingham at the British Championships.
 

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Fife Swimmer Competes in First International

Kirsty Brunton from Dalgety Bay is the only Disability Sport Fife representative in the Scottish Team that met in Edinburgh at the Head Office of Scottish Disability Sport before heading south to Nottingham for the 2015 CPISRA World Games.  The CPISRA World Games are an international multi-sport competition that offers athletes and players with cerebral palsy, traumatic brain injury or stroke the opportunity to compete in swimming, athletics, football and bowls competitions. 13 nations and 387 delegation members have signed up to take part in the Games.

Kirsty first came to the attention of Disability Sport Fife early in the year when she travelled to the Michael Woods Centre in Glenrothes for a fitness swim. Participation in the DSF swimming championships was soon followed by selection for the Fife Team for the Scottish Championships where she helped Team Fife to win the National Team title. By this time she was a regular attendee at DSF swim training sessions and ready for participation in her first SDS National Performance Gala. 

Personal bests followed with every swim and after successfully negotiating the classification process she was ready for consideration for Team Scotland. The rest is history and Kirsty is now enjoying every moment of her first international swimming experience.

Kirsty joined Carnegie Swimming Club in May and is now being coached by John Szaranek. Under John’s guidance she is making great progress and after only a matter of a few months involvement in disability swimming she has the opportunity to compete in an international event. Kirsty is undoubtedly up for the challenge of competing in events from 400 metres freestyle through to 100 metres breast stroke. Sport is however in her blood, having been a keen open water swimmer for many years and a sailing coach for 20 years.

Kirsty will be joined in Nottingham by experienced SDS coach Eric McMillan from Cowdenbeath who will lead the Scottish bowls squad. Eric travelled to New Zealand, South Africa and Australia with Team Scotland for the IBD World Bowls Championships.
 

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife

 

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New DSF Sessions for Kirkcaldy

The ever expanding weekly programme of sports activity sessions organised by Disability Sport Fife (DSF) for participants with a physical, sensory or learning disability is scheduled to recommence in mid to late August. The full schedule of sessions is available on the DSF web site hosted by the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust. www.fifeleisure.org.uk (find us in the health programmes drop down menu). Check out the DSF registration form for specific start dates.

There are now 29 sessions on the weekly timetable, independently organised by DSF or in conjunction with key partners Fife Council, Leisure Trust or individual inclusive sports clubs. Sessions are held in Cupar, Cowdenbeath, Glenrothes, Dunfermline, Kirkcaldy, St Andrews, Newport, Falkland, Lochore and Lochgelly etc. Two of the long established multi sports sessions have over 50 attendees weekly.  

There is no better time to be physically active and the registration process is simple for potential participants with a disability of all ages and abilities.

Check out the DSF web site for a registration form or contact the DSF Administrator, Norma Buchanan; 
Email norma.buchanan@fife.gov.uk 
Telephone 03451 555555 ext 444989.

DSF is pleased to announce that two new sessions will be launched on Wednesday 19th and Thursday 20th at Kirkcaldy Leisure Centre with support from the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust. The Wednesday session is a swimming coach led session for swimmers with a disability interested in training for galas and representing Fife at National Championships. The session is also appropriate for learners who have progressed through learn to swim programmes and have aspirations of joining a mainstream swimming club. DSF coach Gabby Doig will lead the new swimming session. The Thursday session is in the gym and appropriate for any individual with a disability interested in raising their level of fitness and learning about using the excellent inclusive gym facilities that are available in leisure facilities throughout Fife.

DSF will be introducing additional new sessions across Fife in the months ahead in conjunction with major partners. The DSF programme is possible because of the support received from partners and the fund raising efforts of DSF supporters throughout Fife.
 

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Fife Bowlers Challenge for Test Match Title

Disabled bowlers in Fife are enjoying an amazing year. The performances of Martin Hunter (Burntisland), Michael Simpson (Auchtermuchty) and Maria Spencer (Dunfermline) at the IBD World Championships in New Zealand were undoubtedly the highlights but Michael Simpson and Billy Allan (Cowdenbeath) winning double gold in Ayr at the Bowls Scotland National Championships was a close second. It is now up to the leading Fife bowlers with a learning disability to challenge for the 2015 Inter Area Test Match title at Kelvingrove and Disability Sport Fife has selected a strong team of 12 bowlers from across Fife.

The First Test Match was held in Fife in 2010 at the Beveridge Park in Kirkcaldy. Fife has won the title once, drawn with West of Scotland on one occasion and finished in runners up position the last time the event was held. The 2015 team is the strongest to date and players are excited at contesting the 2015 Test Match on the 2014 Commonwealth Games rinks. Test match participants contest singles, pairs and triples in a unique format devised by Scottish Disability Sport.

The Fife “A” team of Darryl Stewart, Craig Donaldson and Gary Handyside has an excellent record in previous Test Matches and will be difficult to beat. Craig from Kinghorn is the overall Fife team captain and shares the honour with Darryl of being a past Scottish singles champion. 

The “B” team of Gary Lindsay and Craig Bernard from East Fife Community Support Services (CSS) plus Kevin Mustard from Central Fife CSS is well placed to challenge 2015 opponents from Lothian and West of Scotland.

Women’s “A” team members Wendy Thomson, Tanis Murphy and Julie Allan from East Fife CSS have been practicing together for the 2015 Test Match. Wendy is the current Scottish singles champion and since joining St Andrews Bowling Club, the standard of her play has improved significantly. Women’s “B” team members Michelle Wallace Central Fife CSS and Wendy Robertson East Fife CSS were delighted to learn that past Scottish Champion Pamela Mitchell from Dunfermline has accepted an invitation to turn out for the Fife team after an absence of several years.

The Fife Team Manager is John Collins who until recently was an East Fife Community Support Services staff member. John will be supported by staff from East, West and Central Fife CSS as Disability Sport Fife challenges for a third win in the Inter Area Test Match organised by Scottish Disability Sport.
 

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife

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Young Fife Swimmer Heads to Texas

Stirling University undergraduate Lucy Walkup from Fife will fly to London on August 13th and then on to the USA 24 hours later for the 2015 World Deaf Swimming Championships. The Championships will run from 17th – 22nd August in Texas and Team GB has just had a most successful training camp at Crystal Palace in London in preparation for the Championships. UK Deaf Sport is responsible for team GB involvement in the Championships. Lucy returns to Fife on August 24th.
 

Lucy now trains with Stirling Swimming Club and her coach is Kerry Martin. The past year has involved significant changes for Lucy in swimming, studies and location. True to form however the young Fife student has adapted well and travels to the USA with fellow Scots Jack McComish and Danielle Joyce in the knowledge that she has prepared well for this great sporting occasion.


Lucy has always been a very active member of Disability Sport Fife and over the years she has benefitted greatly from the expertise and support provided by the coaches from Glenrothes and Carnegie Swimming Clubs.

​Family, friends and the local Fife community have once again rallied around the Glenrothes teenager to assist her to access the funding necessary to meet the significant costs of involvement in the World Championships.

 

Performance deaf sportsmen and women do not receive the same levels of financial support as other high performance disabled sports people. A podium place is the ambition of young Lucy in Texas.
 

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife

 

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First Tour Win for Fife Athlete

Derek Rae of Anster Haddies was the winner of the 2015 Tour of Fife, Fife’s premier running event. In 2013 Derek finished in second place but did not compete in 2014. The 2014 winner and runner up to Derek this year was Scott Cassidy of Fife AC. Last year Scott won four out of the five races with GB International Andrew Lemoncello winning the Up Hell Hill Time Trial at the East Lomond in record time. The competition between Derek and Scott was the highlight of the 2015 Tour of Fife.

Traditionally the Tour of Fife first event is the Chariots of Fire 4.2 beach race at the West Sands in St Andrews. Scott finished first but shared the same time of 22.38 with Derek. Race two a day later was the 3.1 trail/hill race at the Hill of Tarvit near Ceres. Once again the athletes completed the course in the same finishing order but Scott recorded a time of 18.24, one second ahead of Derek. The 1.4 Up Hell Hill time trial at the East Lomond on Friday 31st July was always going to be critical to the overall result and Derek covered the course in 10.13, finishing 24 seconds ahead of Scott to become the overall Tour leader after three races.

With two days to go and a 4 mile race at the Cambo Estate near Kingsbarns and the Mega Monimail Marvel over 4.2 miles the scene was set for a grandstand finish. Derek won the penultimate race at Cambo in 24.14, increasing his lead by one second and held on at Monimail to record the same time as race winner Scott Cassidy of 26.33. Twenty four seconds separated the winner and runner up after 5 races with Derek Rae from Kirkcaldy winning his first Tour of Fife title and 2014 champion Scott Cassidy finishing in second place. Alastair Brockie from Corstorphine AAC finished in third place.

2015 has been Derek’s most successful athletics year to date. Recording 2:40.40 at the IPC World Marathon Championships in London, while running for Team GB, was the highlight but the Tour of Fife victory is a very special local and national achievement. Coach Ron Morrison of Fife AC has established a clear focus for Derek this year as he strives to lower his marathon time even further in 2016.

 

Derek competes in the T46 class in international disability sport and 16 year old Sam Fernando from Gateside and Fife AC was the other Disability Sport Fife member competing in the 2015 Tour of Fife. Sam competes in the T20 class and his finishing position of overall 8th was a remarkable achievement for the ex Bell Baxter pupil who is about to move to College at SRUC Elmwood. Sam’s highest finishing position was 7th when he completed the Up Hell Hill Time Trial in 11.24 and he followed this up with two 8th place finishes in the final two races. Sam’s overall time for the 5 Tour races was 1:52.01. Sam will team up with Derek in September in the strong Disability Sport Fife team that will compete in the national track and field championships organised by Scottish Disability Sport and Scottish Athletics in Perth.

Photo 1: Derek Rae (178) and Scott Cassidy (168)

Photo 2: Sam Fernando (155)
 

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Fife Boccia Player Wins Silver

Fourteen countries competed in the European Teams and Pairs Boccia Championships in Surrey at the end of July. Five Scots were included in Team GB including Kieran Steer from Crossgates who is coached by GB coach Claire Morrison from Dalgety Bay.

Players compete in different classes according to the severity and nature of their impairment. Kieran competes in the BC4 class along with fellow Scot Stephen McGuire and English player Evie Edwards. Team GB won silver after a magnificent final against Slovakia which they lost by the narrowest of margins, 3-4. In the semi final, Team GB defeated Russia 10-0. Gold medal winning teams gain automatic selection for Rio but coach Morrison is confident that the GB BC4 Pairs will now have enough ranking points for qualification for the 2016 Paralympic Games.

The Great Britain BC1/2 team, consisting of English players Nigel Murray, David Smith and Scottish player Joshua Rowe, comfortably reached their section final with an 11-4 win against Portugal. In the final, Team GB came up against Slovakia and won through by 5-4 to secure their place for Rio 2016.

Boccia is played by some of the most severely physically impaired members of the international disability sports movement. The game is played indoors and requires precision, control, power and tactical awareness. A boccia court is similar in size to a badminton court and the top players can deliver their boccia balls to all corners of the court with incredible accuracy.

 

Photo: Stephen, Evie and Kieran
 

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Double Success for Fife Bowlers

Collaboration between Bowls Scotland and Scottish Disability Sport has resulted in bowlers with a physical impairment being included in the National Bowls Championships at Ayr for the first time. Two sections for male bowlers, selected from the national disability bowls squad, were successfully included in the 2015 mainstream Bowls Championships. The sections were representative of the international classes for disability bowls. Each of the classes contested was won by a Disability Sport Fife member with considerable experience of international disability bowls.

Billy Allan from Cowdenbeath is a very experienced Scottish international bowler having competed for his country in Kuala Lumpur, Australia, South Africa, New Zealand and at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow in 2014. Billy competes in class B6 which is reserved for bowlers who are functionally restricted in their bowling action. Billy played in a singles head to head with fellow Scot Gary Clelland from West Lothian and became the first winner of the Scottish B6 singles championship.

Michael Simpson from Auchtermuchty and Strathmiglo Bowling Club was a pairs silver medallist at the IBD World Championships in South Africa and again at the 2015 World Championships in New Zealand. 

 

Michael was also a member of Team Scotland at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow in 2015. Michael has a reputation for determination and a never say die approach to competition and he demonstrated that clearly in Ayr. Up against fellow national squad member John Hughes in the final, he slipped to 10-15 before winning through in the final stages by 21-16 to become the first winner of the B7/B8 title. The B7/B8 section is reserved for bowlers who are functionally restricted in their bowling action but less so than those on the B6 section.

Disability bowls in Fife is particularly strong at present with a significant number of bowlers with a visual impairment, physical or learning disability excelling at all levels of the sport. Disability Sport Fife organises a comprehensive programme of outdoor, indoor and carpet bowls competitions in conjunction with a number of Fife’s many inclusive bowls clubs that are a feature of the Fife network. Players of all levels of ability can participate in the Fife programme.

Billy Allan (L) and Michael Simpson (R) competing for Team Scotland against South Africa in 2013 at Kelvingrove.


Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Fife Paratriathlete Makes Steady Progress

The decision by Stefan Hoggan from Auchtermuchty to retire from competitive performance swimming to concentrate on Paratriathlon is turning out to be the smartest decision made by the 22 year old in his illustrious sporting career to date. Stefan is still a relative newcomer to the sport but Coach Alistair Donaldson of British Triathlon is pleased with his progress at the GB training base at Loughborough University. Stefan is finding the training regime enjoyable but immensely challenging and with each competition he is experiencing improvement and progress.

Stefan’s first Paratriathlon was in London and then he headed to Wales for the GB Championships. British Triathlon entered him for an ITU Paratriathlon in Iseo in Italy in July where he finished 8th and first finishing GB athlete in the PT4 class. The event was won by the great German athlete Martin Schultz who is a legend in the sport. Stefan, not surprisingly, was satisfied with his swim in the most pleasant lake conditions he had ever experienced but his bike ride confirmed the area of his training where he has made the most progress. The third and final discipline of Paratriathlon continues to be the most challenging for Stefan but he is confident that if he maintains his current level of commitment then his run will become less stressful.
 

Stefan is a great family man and after an intensive 7 week training stint he is enjoying a short spell at him with his parents, grandparents, brothers, sisters and friends who have been behind him throughout his career to date.

Stefan is a Scottish Disability Sport (SDS) Academy athlete who has been supported by the Bill Pullar Trust and Specsavers. Stefan is thrilled that Jemima Scotland Ltd has come on board as a new long term sponsor to help him through the most challenging period in his high performance sporting career to date.

Stefan remains a very committed member of Disability Sport Fife (DSF) and one of the most loyal members across all sports. As an ambassador of DSF and SDS he is exceptional and is always first to volunteer to inspire younger members or promote disability sport. Stefan is totally committed to becoming a 2016 Paralympian in Rio or 2020 Paralympian in Tokyo. There are major Paratriathlon competitions ahead in the USA and Canada, including the World Championships, and Stefan has set his sights on being considered. The young Fife all round sportsman is in no doubt about how difficult the challenges are that lie ahead but with the team he has behind him he is determined to give it his best shot.

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Fife European Paratriathlon Champion

In August 2014 Alison Patrick from Dunfermline became the World Champion in her class in Paratriathlon in Edmonton Canada at the ITU World Triathlon Grand Final. In May this year in Wales Alison won the PT5 title for visually impaired athletes at the British Championships with an overall finishing time of 01:11:08.00.  Alison finished sixth overall and first female to cross the line after the run.  What made the performance all the more pleasing was that this was her first full triathlon with her new guide Hazel Smith. In June Alison recorded another first place at the ITU World Paratriathlon event in Besancon.

Alison finished third in the 2014 European Championships but in July this year in Geneva with guide Hazel Smith, she won her first European PT5 title in a time of 01:06:08. Following a very impressive swim the GB pair recorded their fastest tandem bike split, confirming the success of their new partnership. Alison is now British, European and World Champion in her class as she heads out to Rio for a Test Event at the beginning of August in preparation for the Paralympic Games in 2016.

Alison is coached by Jonathon Riall and has been a member of the World Class lottery funded British Paratriathlon squad since 2014. Alison previously swum as a junior and enjoyed a very successful track career as a middle distance runner. Alison competed at international level over 1500 metres and 800 metres and won an IBSA world title over the latter distance. Alison also represented Scotland at the World Mountain Trophy as a mainstream athlete.
 

Alison is a physiotherapist in Fife and an exceptionally talented swimmer, cyclist and athlete. Hazel Smith, her guide is based in Edinburgh and together they have the ambition of representing Great Britain in Rio in 2016.

Photo: Hazel Smith – guide (L) and Alison Patrick (R)

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife

 

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AnchorFife All Rounder is an Inspiration

Two years ago, while living in Kirkcaldy, Mary Wilson became a member of Disability Sport Fife. Since then she has immersed herself enthusiastically in training and competitions all over the country.

Mary is now a most valued DSF member and following an excellent Fife Swimming Championships in February she helped Fife to team victory at the 2015 Scottish Swimming Championships at Grangemouth. Mary recorded similar successes at the Fife (DSF) Track and Field Championships at Pitreavie and has earned the right to represent Fife at her first Scottish (SDS) Athletics Championships in Perth in September. Mary also enjoyed success in the 2015 Grand Prix Throws circuit promoted by Scottish Athletics and is about to turn her hand to wheelchair tennis, wheelchair curling and lawn bowls.

This inspirational and remarkable woman was medically discharged from the Army after 20 years service as a mental health nurse. She completed four operational tours including Bosnia, Kosovo, Northern Ireland and was the Field Mental Health Team Officer in charge in Afghanistan for three months. Unfortunately Mary had a serious shoulder injury and was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. This led to her Services discharge.

In 2013 Mary was fortunate to be selected as a swimmer for the Warrior Games and for Mary this was a life changing experience.

The Games involve wounded serving personnel and veterans. 

Some have limbs missing or have a visual impairment and others have psychological disorders such as depression or PTSD. It was the 2013 Warrior Games that inspired Prince Harry to launch the inaugural Invictus Games in the UK in 2014. 

Mary was appointed captain of the GB field athletics team and went on to win bronze medals for shot and discus and won three gold, one silver and one bronze medals in swimming.

This year Mary competed in the Second Warrior Games in Virginia USA and won one gold, one silver and one bronze medal in the swimming pool and set PBs in all her races. 200 athletes from the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force, US Special Operations Command and British Armed Forces participated. Mary is undoubtedly inspired by the sporting challenges and camaraderie but also being able to compete against the US military.

Mary is now based in Edinburgh, working for Help for Heroes, and training with the Heart of Midlothian Masters squad. DSF is helping her to realise her sporting targets. These include access to competitions, coaching support, equipment and introductions to appropriate organisations and individuals that can assist her to pursue her sporting ambitions. Mary Wilson has become a great role model for women in sport in Fife and beyond.

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife

 

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AnchorThree Year Best for Fife Athlete

In May 2012 Owen Miller from Dunfermline Track and Field ran 4:02.63 at the Olympic Park at the Visa London Disability Athletics Challenge. Owen ran the race of his life and just missed out on selection for Team GB for London 2012 in the T20 class for athletes with an intellectual impairment. Throughout 2013 and 2014 Owen has been unable to improve on his 2012 time despite an enormous amount of hard work. His best outdoor time during this period was 4:04.49 in 2013 at a Scottish Athletics League meet at Grangemouth.

Owen’s coaches Gemma Nicol (Dunfermline TF) and Steve Doig (Fife AC) targeted the Glasgow Athletics Association Miler meet on Friday 24th July at Hutcheson’s Grammar School.

With almost 150 names on the start lists for 1500m Owen was listed in the B race and he produced his best run of the last three years. Training has been going well and Owen just needed the right occasion to bring out his best form. Owen recorded 4:03.88 for his second fastest run of all time. 

Exactly the confidence boost the young Disability Sport Fife athlete required. Owen’s ambition is to run as close to 4 minutes as possible and his performance at the GAA Miler Meet is an indication he is heading in the right direction.

One of Owen’s new training partners is Fife AC athlete Adam Scott who ran an amazing 3:53.32 at the Miler Meet and won a gold medal at the Scottish Schools Championships earlier in the summer. Representing Scottish Schools he went on to be crowned British Schools champion by winning the 3000 metres title. Owen is thoroughly enjoying and benefitting from training alongside one of Scotland’s finest middle distance talents.

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife

 

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AnchorFife Athlete Makes Impressive Comeback

Kenny Suttie from Milton of Balgonie was at one time a Disability Sport Fife junior athlete with enormous performance potential as a swimmer, basketball player and wheelchair athlete. Along with team mates Derek Frew, Nicky Diatchenko, Martin McArdle and Evelyn Neave he raised the bar in wheelchair athletics in Fife and spearheaded a growth in interest in wheelchair sports across Fife. Kenny represented Scottish Schools at the European Schools Games in Lisbon and competed in a significant number of British Wheelchair Racing Association competitions and road races across the country. 

In 2005/2006 Kenny decided to retire from sport and concentrate on his college studies and his new life with wife Terresa. Kenny now works for Sky and has two children, aged 7 and 11. Two months ago Kenny decided to return to training and competition and he has been warmly welcomed by Disability Sport Fife. He has linked up with DSF coach David Brown and is taking advantage of the DSF seated throws sessions supported by the Leisure Trust, Scottish Athletics and REMAP.

Kenny has been involved in two competitions to date in Fife and Forth Valley and his performances have improved across the three disciplines he contested. His personal best performances now sit at shot 7.71m, discus 21.26m and javelin 17.66m.  

Kenny will join forces with Michael Mellon (Cardenden), Jonny Brown (Thornton) Mary Wilson (Edinburgh) Lewis Barnett (Cupar) as the physically disabled throwers in the strong Fife team that will compete in the Scottish Disability Sport Senior Track and Field championships in Perth in September. Team Fife will compete in the Championships as defending champions and holders of the Bob Mitchell Trophy. In the last decade Team Fife has won the team trophy on six occasions with Team West of Scotland coming out on top four times. Every athlete competes for team points towards the team trophy and the return of Kenny to disability athletics is a great boost to the Fife squad.

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Fife Javelin Thrower on Target

 

Father of three Michael Mellon from Cardenden became a member of Disability Sport Fife earlier this year and in a short period of time he has made an immense impact. Michael competed in his first DSF Track and Field Championships at Pitreavie in June and won the men’s ambulant javelin. He will be part of a strong squad of physically disabled athletes from Fife that will compete in the Scottish Disability Sport National Senior Championships in September in Perth.

At school Michael was a very keen rugby player and javelin thrower and he excelled in both.  Michael’s father was in the Royal Air Force and he joined up in 1997.  He sustained a tibia and fibula injury playing rugby and attended Headley Court Rehabilitation hospital for a short period. In 2005 Michael was medically discharged and whilst on sick leave met his wife and they married in 2004. Because of all the leg pain he was experiencing Michael decided to progress with an amputation. 

In 2014 Michael signed up with Dundee Dragons and has become involved in the Dragons wheelchair rugby league team.  Michael loves the camaraderie of the club and sport and values the friendships he has made through this dynamic sport.  Michael was thrilled to be selected for Team Scotland and play in the Four Nations Rugby League Tournament last year.

Michael is a member of Pitreavie Athletics Club where he is being coached by Gordon Loudon.  He is an F44 standing thrower and hopes to introduce a cross over step in due course. Michael throws an 800 gms. javelin 37 metres plus but those who know him well believe there is more to come. Like a number of DSF members Michel plans to try out wheelchair curling over the winter.

Disability Sport Fife was delighted to hear about Michael from colleagues in Tayside and he was introduced to DSF members at the DSF Annual Awards evening earlier in the year. Michael is quick to acknowledge the enormous support he has received from BLESMA and Help for Heroes. Michael is an athlete with enormous performance potential and he has been warmly welcomed to the Fife high performance Parasport squad.

 

Photo: Michael centre in blue.
 

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Volunteering Scotland Meet the President

The President of Disability Sport Fife Richard Brickley was interviewed by Volunteering Scotland about the importance of volunteering and the role that it has played in his life. The interview took place at the Michael Woods Sports and Leisure Centre in Glenrothes at the same time as the weekly multi sports session was being held in the main games hall. 


 

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife

 

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Cupar Swimmer Awarded Bursary

15 year old Ollie Carter from Cupar and District Swimming Club has been awarded the Bill Pullar Bursary for 2015. The Bell Baxter HS pupil was voted the outstanding male swimmer at the 2014 Scottish Junior Swimming Championships and under the guidance of club coach Mark Laing he improves with every meet. Mark is complimentary about Ollie’s commitment to training and how he has become a true student of the sport.

At the recent Scottish National Championships at Tollcross Aquatics Centre in Glasgow, Ollie made it through to the finals on every day of the Championships. Ollie’s two major successes were winning gold in 400 metres freestyle in 4.43.44 and securing bronze in 100 metres butterfly in 1.18.60. In 200 metres IM, Ollie was 5th overall in 2.43,82 and in 100 metres freestyle he swam 1.02.05 in the final. Currently coach Mark believes Ollie’s strongest event is 400 metres freestyle and the Glasgow swim confirms that this is the case. .

The Bill Pullar Bursary is awarded each year to the athlete, player or coach identified as most deserving of funding at a critical stage of their performance career. The Busary is administered by Disability Sport Fife on behalf of Margaret Pullar whose late husband Bill was the architect of the Fife Sports Institute and a great supporter of DSF. 

The Institute was the birthplace of DSF and the centre where many Fife disabled sports’ participants started their careers and progressed to international successes. Ollie accesses strength and conditioning training in Glenrothes at the new centre with support from Stuart Bazzari of the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust.

The Bill Pullar Bursary is awarded annually and past recipients have been Owen Miller, Craig Rodgie, Derek Rae, Stefan Hoggan and Brad Stewart who have all gone on to GB level within their specific sport.

Photo: Ollie Carter and Mrs Margaret Pullar.
 

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife


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Fife Junior Makes Steady Progress

Sam Fernando from Gateside and Fife AC continues to make steady progress as a T20 performance athlete and hopes one day to receive the call up for Scotland and Great Britain. The Fife teenager has recently left Bell Baxter HS to further his education as a college student. During his time at Bell Baxter Sam represented the Department for pupils with additional support needs at local and national level with great distinction in athletics, cross country and football in particular.

Disability Sport Fife supported Sam through classification on his 16th birthday and he has not looked back since. In June 2013 at the Fife Schools Athletics Championships, prior to completing the international classification process, Sam ran 5:21.7 for 1500 metres and finished 5th. In June of this year at the UK Youth Development U17/U20 League Division North Premier 1 in Preston, Sam recorded 4:31.8 over the same distance to confirm how much he has progressed with support from coach Ron Morrison at Fife AC.

Sam is currently ranked 8th for T20 1500 and 800 metres across all age groups and ranked 1 for 5000 metres following a personal best time at the 2015 Scottish Schools Championships of 17:04.74. Sam’s GB ranking for T20 under 17 athletes over two miles is 2 which yet  again confirms the enormous potential of this young Fife teenager.

 

 

Like all Fife AC athletes Sam has a busy summer ahead of local races and of course the Tour of Fife in July/August over five days in five different settings. Like all successful young athletes Sam has superb family support and will head off for the first time to Bedford for the UK Age Group Championships on 29th and 30th August where he is entered for the T20 1500 metres. Another exciting opportunity ahead for the Fife teenager will be to run in Central Park New York on a forthcoming family holiday while following the training programme set down by his club coach.

Fife AC is recognised by Disability Sport Fife as an outstanding inclusive athletics club. Sam Fernando is the most recent athlete to progress through the club’s coaching structure that involves inclusive coaches such as Dave Francis, Elspeth Wallace, Rachel Edger and Ron Morrison. Paralympic gold medallist Caroline Baird (nee Innes) was a product of the Fife AC performance pathway and Maurice Paterson is a current member who continues to represent Fife in disability sports events with great success.

Earlier this year Sam was invited to attend a Scottish Athletics junior training camp and last year Sam was awarded the Disability Sport Fife junior athlete of the year award. Many individuals, including Bell Baxter HS PE staff member Fiona Stewart, recognised early on that Sam is a very special distance athlete and he is certainly in the best place to further develop his athletics talent. Sam ended his time at Bell Baxter HS as the Scottish Disability Sport Junior 1500 metres champion but for those who know him well, the best is yet to come.
 

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife


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Fife Athletes has Clear Goals

Since gaining his first selection for Great Britain and running 2:40.40 at the 2015 IPC World Marathon Championships in London, Anster Haddie Derek Rae has become even more determined to become a Paralympian.  If determination, focus and commitment guarantee success then Derek will undoubtedly one day achieve his goal.  Under the guidance of coach, Ron Morrison from Fife AC, Derek continues to make progress in every aspect of training and competition.  Ron has brought stability, focus and structure to Derek’s training since they first came together and his performances and confidence have improved accordingly.

Post London, Derek had a steady run in the Black Rock 5 miles and this was followed up with a creditable second place finish in the Glenrothes 10K in June.  A second place finish was recorded recently at the Newburgh 4 miles confirming that coach and athlete plan to improve speed over shorter distances is proving successful. 

Derek plans to target the five events of the brilliant Tour of Fife in July and August after a year’s absence.  Derek finished second in the Tour in 2013 when athletes compete over five consecutive days in five events across Fife.  This will be followed by a run in the Stirling 10K in September and the Glasgow Half Marathon in October.  The programme is geared towards offering Derek every chance to be even more competitive as a physically disabled marathon runner.

Derek is a very committed Anster Haddie and is first to pay tribute to the many club members who have supported him over many years.  Derek thoroughly enjoys his training sessions with Fife AC athletes at St. Andrews on Tuesday and Thursday evenings where he has the opportunity to train with members of the Rees family, among others, who are seasoned Scottish internationals.

Derek has always been an active sports person but following a motor cycle accident it appeared he would be unable to commit to sport in the way he had since he was a youngster.  Excellent rehabilitation at Victoria Hospital and support from his local community inspired the Kirkcaldy man to strive for the very highest levels of performance in mainstream and disability sport.  Derek is an active member of Disability Sport Fife and a Scottish Disability Sport Academy athlete.  Derek is supported by Scottish Athletics and the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust as a high performance athlete.

 

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife


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Fife Archer wins British Title

Brad Stewart from Ladybank made an important decision in 2014 that would undoubtedly have a major impact on his aspirations as a performance wheelchair archer.  Brad changed from a recurve to a compound bow in his efforts to advance his career as a high performance archer. Under the guidance of Edinburgh University Performance Archery Coach, Alistair Wittingham, Brad has made significant progress, culminating in recently winning the British Wheelchair Archery Championships (BWAA) men’s open compound section.

Competing for the first time in the compound section in a major event, Brad scored 635 out of a possible 720 with his 72 arrows shot over 50 metres.  Following the ranking round, Brad was seeded one in the head to head competition over three rounds which he won to secure his first British BWAA Championships title.  To win a major title at Stoke Mandeville, the birthplace of British and international wheelchair sport, is the goal of every para-sport wheelchair athlete. 

Brad is an active member of Disability Sport Fife and a Scottish Disability Sport Academy athlete.  The Fife Sports and Leisure Trust supports Brad’s fitness training as a high performance Fife athlete. 

 

Over the past year Brad has demonstrated considerable skill as a wheelchair curler in addition to his success in archery.  The Ladybank archer hopes one day to represent Great Britain in a major international event.  Archery is a foundation sport of the Paralympic movement and one of the most challenging and competitive sports within the Paralympic programme.

 

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife
 


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Fife Swimmer Competes in Open Water Event

Since joining Disability Sport Fife earlier this year Kirsty Brunton from Dalgety Bay has made a major impact. Participation in the DSF Swimming Championships led to selection for the Fife team for the Scottish Championships. Kirsty then travelled to Tollcross to swim in her first Scottish Disability Sport Performance Gala, Long Course, and not surprisingly set several best performance times. The highlight of Kirsty’s year to date however has been selection for Team Scotland for the CPISRA Games in Nottingham in August.

Kirsty has now joined Carnegie Swimming Club and John Szaranek will soon take over as her coach. Carnegie SC has gained a national reputation for supporting high performance Parasport swimmers and among the most well known in the last decade have been Craig Rodgie, Lucy Walkup and Stefan Hoggan.

Kirsty is also a keen open water swimmer and her most recent achievement has been completing the Great Manchester Open Water Swim in early July in 44 minutes. Kirsty has cerebral palsy which restricts her leg function in particular. Kirsty swims arms only which makes her achievements all the more remarkable. Kirsty is an active member of Dalgety Bay Sailing Club and has been a sailing coach for over 20 years. 

 

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife
 


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Inclusive PE Project in Fife

Disability Sport Fife was delighted to be involved with Scottish Disability Sport in producing two four minute videos on inclusive physical education. The filming took place at McLean and Canmore Primary Schools in Dunfermline and featured DSF junior athletes Callum Sloan and Cameron Adam, plus parents and teachers.

The videos highlighted the great work going on in each of these schools to include pupils with a physical impairment in physical education. Why these clips are special and unique is that the teachers involved are non specialists but very committed mainstream classroom teachers. Each headteacher  is fully involved in delivering regular inclusive PE and sport. The parents are very supportive of Callum and Cameron being involved in community sports activities organised by Disability Sport Fife and local sports clubs.

 



 

Richard Brickley MBE

President Disability Sport Fife
 


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National Title for Ian Green

Disability Sport Fife has always enjoyed very healthy working partnerships with the Community Support Services of East, West and Central Fife. This has led to increased participation in sport and significant success by individual CSS players in national championships organised by Scottish Disability Sport.

Wallace Wailes was a wheelchair user and a bowls stalwart in the Lanarkshire area of Scotland. Wallace passed away a few years ago and friends and family donated the Wallace Wailles Trophy in his memory to the winner of the wheelchair section at the Scottish Disability Sport Carpet Bowls Championships.

Over the past few years a strong interest in bowls for physically disabled players has developed in Central Fife CSS, particularly centred on the Forward Centre. 

 

Led by staff member Nicky Blyth, interest in bowls has grown to the extent that a number of players are challenging for national honours. Ian Green is one such player and this year at the National Championships he won the Wallace Wailles Trophy for the first time. Other bowlers who will be challenging this year at the Scottish Outdoor Championships are Wullie Harrison. Kenny Dow  and Neil Laughlin.
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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Four Fife Athletes Called up to Academy

The Scottish Disability Sport (SDS) Athlete Academy is a support structure for talented athletes who have the potential to progress on to World Class Performance Programmes (WCPP).  The Academy offers financial support at a critical stage in an athlete’s development and operates in tandem with the staff of the sportscotland Institute of Sport (SIS).  As well as financial support the SDS works in partnership with the SIS to create a programme of athlete workshops and training opportunities to help them to progress to UK Sport funding.


Owen Miler (Left) Derek Rae (Right)


Brad Stewart (Left) Stefan Hoggan (Right)

 

Athletes are selected on strict criteria relating to performance, attitude and commitment to their sport.  Each athlete must be eligible to compete for Scotland and have aspirations of winning medals for GB at international level. Over the years the SDS Athlete Academy has grown and this year 25 athletes from 10 sports are included in the Academy programme.  

Four Disability Sport Fife members are included, two from athletics and single representatives from archery and paratriathlon. Derek Rae (Anster Haddies) who competed this year for GB in the IPC World Marathon Championships in London and Scotland’s leading middle distance athlete with a learning disability, Owen Miller (Dunfermline Track and Field) are the athletes selected. Brad Stewart from Ladybank continues make his mark in archery and is the archer selected and Stefan Hoggan (East Fife Tri Club) has earned his selection by being included in the GB triathlon fast track programme for Rio.
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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World Champion Leads Fife Challenge at Nationals

 

Following another very successful Fife Lawn Bowls Championships, supported by the Beveridge Park Bowling Club, Disability Sport Fife (DSF) has announced its team for the Scottish Championships to be held at the Westburn Park in Aberdeen on Saturday 5 September. 

Defending champion Darryl Stewart (Cowdenbeath), Craig Donaldson from Central Fife Community Support Services (CSS), Gary Handyside (West Fife CSS), Gary Lindsay (East Fife CSS) and Kevin Mustard (Central Fife CSS) have been selected in the section for bowlers with a learning disability.  Defending Champion Wendy Thomson, Tanis Murphy, Julie Allan from East Fife CSS, Michelle Wallace (Central Fife CSS) and Hayley Binnie (West Fife CSS) have been selected to represent Fife in the section for women bowlers with a learning disability.

 

Eleanor Clark (Kirkcaldy),Neil Laughlin and Kenny Dow (Central Fife CSS), will compete in the restricted section for male and female bowlers.  Jamie Weir (Dunfermline) will represent Fife in the junior section for bowlers with a physical impairment. 

 

World champion and defending champion Martin Hunter (Burntisland) will represent Fife in the mens open unrestricted section and he will be ably supported by fellow Scottish international Billy Allan from Cowdenbeath. 

 

 

Martin has also been appointed team captain.Young Stuart Chesby from Dunfermline has also been called up for the first time to represent Fife in the open section for physically disabled men.  Team selection was finalised with the involvement of Wullie Harrison (Central Fife CSS) in the section for male bowlers who use a wheelchair.
 

Double gold medallist from the World Championships early in this year in New Zealand and defending champion Maria Spencer from Dunfermline is unavailable to represent Fife because of her involvement in the British Blind Bowls Singles Championships in Nottingham. 

 

Photo: Defending Scottish Champion Martin Hunter from Burntisland
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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Fife Selection for 2015 Inter Area Bowls

 

Disability Sport Fife (DSF) has identified its team for the Fourth Scottish Inter Area team championships for bowlers with a learning disability to be held at Kelvingrove, venue for the Commonwealth Games, on Wednesday 12 August.  The Fife team will be managed by DSF volunteer John Collins who will be ably supported by volunteers and staff members from East and Central Community Support Services (CSS).

 

The mens A team of three is Craig Donaldson (Central Fife CSS), Darryl Stewart (Cowdenbeath) and Gary Handyside (West Fife CSS).  The mens B team comprises of Gary Lindsay (East Fife CSS), Kevin Mustard (Central Fife CSS) and Craig Bernard (East Fife CSS).  Robert McMahon (Central Fife CSS) has been identified as the mens team reserve.

 

The womens A team is Tanis Murphy, Wendy Thomson and Julie Allan from East Fife CSS.  Only two players at the moment have been identified for the womens B team and they are Michelle Wallace and Roberta Buchan from Central Fife CSS.  Two other players for the womens team have yet to be selected.

 

The first Inter Area Championships were held at the Beveridge Park in Kirkcaldy four years ago and Fife shared the honours with West of Scotland.  At the second Championships hosted by the Lothian Branch of Scottish Disability Sport,the Fife team were the outright winners.  The most recent Inter Area competitions was held in Glasgow where West of Scotland won the title with Fife finishing runners-up.  There is enormous determination within the Fife bowling squad to win the title back this summer.


Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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2015 Glenrothes Road Running Festival

 

Disability Sport Fife (DSF) has a long association with the Glenrothes Road Running Festival.  For several years the largest ever 10k wheelchair road race in Scotland was part of the Road Running Festival programme.  Leading wheelchair athletes from throughout the UK travelled to Fife to compete over a course that was appreciated by great international and Paralympic athletes such as the late Chris Hallam, Tanni Grey Thompson and Ian Thompson.  Wheelchair road racers from Fife like Derek Frew, Kenny Suttie, Evelyn Neave and Nicky Diatchenko trained and competed over the Glenrothes course with great success.

 



There has been a resurgencein interest in wheelchair racing in Fife under the guidance of DSF coach Pamela Robson.  Centred at Pitreavie Athletics Centre and Glenrothes, wheelchair racing has returned to Fife. Two of the most enthusiastic participants, Callum Sloan from Dunfermline and Susanne McGrath from Glenrothes competed in the 4k event at the Glenrothes Road Running Festival.  Callum completed his first London Mini Marathon in London this year and Susanne is determined to complete a full wheelchair marathon within the next couple of years.  The Glenrothes Road Running Festival race was part of their short and medium term goals.

 

GB international Derek Rae from Kirkcaldy and Anster Haddies, always looks forward to the Glenrothes event following his race win in 2013.  Derek competed for Great Britain in London in the T46 IPC World Marathon Championships finishing in a creditable fifth placed in 2:40.40.  Derek had to settle for second place in 34:27 when Ben Hukins from Ronhill, Cambuslang Harriers won his second successive Glenrothes 10k in a time of 33:20.

 

The Glenrothes Road Running Festival offers opportunities for individuals of all ages and abilities to compete over 2k, 4k and 10k.  Mass participation is what the event is about but it offers the opportunity for around 500 talented distance runners to compete over 10k.  DSF is proud of Allan Robertson from Glenrothes who is one of the most experienced athletes with a learning disability in the Fife squad. Alan has competed in almost every 10k since the event was first established.  Allan’s 2015 time was 57:3. Just reward for an athlete whose commitment to physical activity is an example to every individual regardless of age or ability. Craig Houston from East Fife CSS completed the 4k course with several other DSF members.
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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2015 Fife Lawn Bowls Championships

 

With support from the Beveridge Park Bowling Club, and volunteer markers from clubs in the Central Fife area, the 2015 Fife Lawn Bowls Championships were held at the Beveridge Park in Kirkcaldy.  As well as competing for Fife singles titles, bowlers were trying to win a place in the Fife team for the Inter Area Championships for Bowlers with a Learning Disability or the Scottish Disability Sport Lawn Bowls Championships at the Westburn Park in Aberdeen.  Disability Sport Fife (DSF) has an excellent record in each of these Championships and Team Fife places are keenly contested.

 

The morning session of the Championships is reserved for bowlers with a learning disability.  Seven sections were contested for male and female bowlers based on ability and experience in bowls.  The afternoon session is restricted to bowlers with a physical or visual impairment and similarly participants were divided into sections according to ability.  Conditions at the Beveridge Park were challenging for the bowlers because of the incessant rain throughout the day.  Almost all of the individual championships were completed and DSF was able to select teams for Kelvingrove in Glasgow, scene of the Commonwealth Games Bowls, and Westburn Park in Aberdeen, past venue for a World Championships bowls event.

In the womens B section Hayley Binnie from West Fife Community Support Services (CSS) lost out to Julie Allan from East Fife CSS by 5 shots to 8 in an exciting final.  Julie is one of a significant number of East Fife CSS bowlers playing and training at Windygates Bowling Club and their performances have improved accordingly. The womens open final involved Wendy Thomson and Tanis Murphy from East Fife CSS.  Wendy is the defending Fife champion and a recent winner of the Scottish title. Tanis has never won the Fife championship and was returning to competitive sport following a serious leg injury.  It was the less experienced Tanis who won the 2015 Fife title with an 8 shots to 3 win over Wendy who is a member of St Andrews Bowling Club.

 

The outcome of the mens D section competition was third place to Fergus Wilson from West Fife CSS and the runner up was Charlie Porter from East Fife CSS and winner Stuart Melville from West Fife CSS.  The mens C section final was an all East Fife CSS affair with Willie Christie defeating Jimmy Ramsay by 9 shots to 2 in the final.  The mens B section final resulted in a win for Central Fife CSS bowler Kevin Mustard who defeated Craig Bernard from East Fife CSS by 8 shots to 5 in the final.

Not surprisingly the mens open final involved two of the country’s leading bowlers with a learning disability, Darryl Stewart from Cowdenbeath and Craig Donaldson from Kinghorn and Central Fife CSS.  Both bowlers are past Scottish champions outdoors and annually have fascinating encounters indoors at the Fife Championships held at Aberhill.  In the qualifying ties Darryl got the better of Craig by 7 shots to 1 but in the final there was a complete reversal of fortune. Craig won one of the most entertaining and exciting head to heads by 5 shots to 4 after an extra end. The tie was described by a number of observers as the outstanding final in the history of the Fife Championships.  Gary Handyside from West Fife CSS defeated Gary Lindsay from East Fife CSS to take third place position.

 

In the afternoon three individual sections were successfully concluded.  Wullie Harrison from Central Fife CSS won the section for wheelchair users and world champion Maria Spencer from Dunfermline won the open womens section.  In the mens open section Billy Allan from Cowdenbeath finished runner-up and defending Fife champion and world champion Martin Hunter from Burntisland retained his title with a 3 shots to 0 victory.

 

Jamie Weir from Dunfermline in his first DSF Lawn Bowls Championships won the junior title for physically disabled bowlers and Eleanor Clark from Kirkcaldy retained her Fife title in the ladies restricted section.  Stuart Chesby from Dunfermline finished third in the mens restricted section with Kenny Dow from Central Fife CSS finishing runner-up.  The leading performer in the restricted section was however Neil Laughlin from Central Fife CSS who played his best bowls to date and ran out a convincing undefeated winner.

 

President John Clark of Beveridge Park Bowling Club handed over the greens to DSF for yet another Championships and club member Matt Thomson once again acted as the officials coordinator. There was a 30 second silence prior to the start of the Championships in memory of DSF bowlers Jimmy Binnie and Peter Wood who passed away in the year past.  At the conclusion of the Championships it was clear that DSF will have two strong teams for the Championships in Glasgow and Aberdeen. 
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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Fife Junior Team Athletics Champions

Lochgelly HS pupils proudly display the Russell Hogg Team Trophy won at the 2015 Disability Sport Fife Track and Field Championships. The Trophy is presented to the school gaining the most points over the full day of track and field events. 



 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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Fife Performance Disability Swimmers in Form

Nine Disability Sport Fife (DSF) swimmers registered for the 2015 Scottish Disability Sport National Performance Championships at Tollcross in Glasgow.  Two late withdrawals reduced the representation slightly but nevertheless it was a strong squad of swimmers who competed in an event that attracts entries from all of Scotland’s leading swimmers with a physical, sensory or learning disability. 

The Performance Championships offer Scotland’s leading disability swimmers with the opportunity to compete over distances that are not included in the Scottish Disability Sport National Short Course Championships.  The meet also helps prepare Scotland’s leading swimmers for British Short Course and Long Course Championships and international events over the summer.

Three Fife swimmers went through classification for the first time prior to the Performance Gala and this potentially set them up for future representative honours.  Teenager Cara Smyth (S10 SB9 S10) from INCAS was one of the swimmers classified and she began her meet with 1:41.43 for 100m backstroke, followed by 6:12.53 for 400m freestyle and 51.24 for 50m breaststroke.  Cara completed her first involvement in the National Performance Gala with 3:23.66 for 200m IM.  Cara has made a great impact since she was first introduced to the DSF programme, contributing significantly to the winning Fife team performances at the 2015 National Championships.

Mary Wilson (S9 SB8 SM9) from Heart of Midlothian ASC was also classified on the Performance Gala weekend and she started her programme with 100m backstroke in 1:56.95.  Mary followed up with a 2:14.52 for 100m breaststroke and 43.73 for 50m freestyle.  Mary competes for DSF in national events and has been selected for the GB team for the Warrior Games.

The third newly classified swimmer was Kirsty Brunton (S8 SB7 SM8) from Carnegie SC who started her programme with 400m freestyle in 8:51.34, followed by 100m breaststroke in 2:45.24 and the 50m freestyle in 51.60.  Kirsty’s final race in her first championship was 1:56.78 for 100m freestyle.  Kirsty will represent Scotland at the CPISRA World Championships in Nottingham in the summer.
 

Photo: Newcomer Kirsty Brunton

10 year old Ruairidh Dumper from Carnegie SC is one of a number of Fife youngsters who made their mark in the last year in performance swimming.  Swimming in his first Performance Gala Ruairidh completed 50m backstroke in 1:03.02, 50m breaststroke in 1:19.71, 100m freestyle in 2:00.78 and 50m butterfly in 1:20.35.  15 year old Oliver Carter from Cupar SC recorded 4:49.73 for 400m freestyle, 1:34.03 for 100m breaststroke and 1:02.88 for 100m freestyle.  These two Fife juniors have a promising future in disability swimming in Fife and Scotland.  Oliver was voted the leading junior at the 2014 Scottish Disability Sport National Junior Championships.

 

18 year old Lucy Walkup from Stirling SC is heading off to the World Deaf Swimming Championships in Texas in the summer and every meet and training session is geared towards preparing her for this major international event.  Lucy launched her meet programme with 1:12.85 for 100m butterfly followed by 1:21.79 in her favoured breaststroke and 29.97 for 50m freestyle.  Lucy has almost completed her first year as an undergraduate at Stirling University and as a member of Stirling SC.  The 2014/2015 swimming year has gone well to date considering the upheaval involved in changing clubs and moving from school to Higher Education.

The final Fife swimmer competing at the Performance Gala was Richard Osborn who like Kirsty Brunton has recently joined Carnegie SC where John Szaranek will take over as lead coach.  Richard started his first Performance Gala with 2:50.72 for 100m breaststroke followed by 1:11.07 for 50m freestyle,1:16.12 for 50m backstroke and finished with 2:44.64 for 100m freestyle.  Richard has a spinal paralysis and is severely restricted in core power and swims entirely on his arms and upper trunk.  Richard is a novice in performance para swimming but he is a swimmer with great determination and enormous potential. 

Performance disability swimming in Fife is returning to the days when DSF had a strong contingent of international swimmers competing on the world stage.  Within the current high performance squad of nine there are several swimmers with Paralympic potential for 2020 and beyond. The partnership that currently exists between Fife’s inclusive swimming clubs and DSF plus the strength of the DSF weekly programme of learn to swim and coach led sessions, run in conjunction with the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust, are responsible for this swimming success.


Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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Largest Entry for Fife Championships

The growth in interest in athletics in Fife was exemplified by the turn out for the 2015 Disability Sport Fife Athletics Championships at Pitreavie Athletics Centre in Dunfermline. 213 entries, 101 track and 60 field events and many quality performances across all disciplines. All secondary schools for pupils with additional support needs were represented and there was a significant number of physically disabled athletes competing for the first time.

West Fife Community Support Services retained the senior team trophy and Lochgelly HS became junior team champions and winners of the Russell Hogg Trophy for the first time. The junior team event was settled on the final event with Balwearie HS finishing two points behind as junior championship runners up.

The leading male athlete of the championships and winner of the Ben Mills Trophy was Phillip Callander from West Fife CSS with wins in 100m - 13.9, 200m – 27.8 and long jump – 13.93m. Atlanta Crawford won the Lita Allan Memorial Trophy and was voted top female athlete for her performances in shot - 7.30m, discus – 17.96m and long jump 3.88m. Scott Birrell from Balwearie HS won the Gilbert Trophy as junior athlete of the championships with wins in shot – 8.19m, long jump – 3.85m and a second place run in 100 metres. An excellent all round performance. The Tom Watson Memorial Trophy was awarded to Stuart Orvloski of West Fife CSS in recognition of the very significant progress he has made over the year in athletics.

Wheelchair athlete Susanne McGrath from Glenrothes recently joined the DSF athletics programme and recorded excellent times over 60m, 100m and 200m with her training partner young Callum Sloan from Dunfermline (McLean Primary). Kenny Suttie from Coalton of Balgonie made a welcome return to DSF athletics with seated throws wins in shot, discus and javelin. Newcomers Michael Mellon from Pitreavie AC in his first DSF competition threw over 31 metres in javelin and Mary Wilson from Edinburgh in the equivalent standing classes for women won shot, discus and javelin. Other physically and sensory impaired athletes who caught the eye were Jamie Weir and Abbie Steggles from Dunfermline HS and Cameron Adam from Canmore Primary and Dunfermline Track and Field.

The DSF Track and Field Championships involve athletes with a physical, sensory or learning disability. Athletes are grouped into events according to their most recent best performances in run, jumps or throws. Athletes of all levels of ability can take part and as well as challenging for Fife titles they have the opportunity to compete for team points towards the senior and junior team trophies.

For the second year the relays were the first events on the programme. The junior girls shuttle relay was won by Woodmill HS and the boys by Balwearie HS. West Fife CSS won both the men’s and women’s senior shuttle relays. Glenrothes HS won the 4 x 100 metres girls relay and Bell Baxter HS the boys race. East Fife CSS won the senior women’s 4 x 100 metres and West Fife CSS the men’s event. The Inter Clubs 4 x 100 metres relay was won by Lochgelly HS Sports Club with DSF A Team finishing second.

Junior athletes who won titles with quality performances were Sam Fernando (Bell Baxter HS), Craig Telford (Glenrothes HS), Caitlin Young (Madras College),Connor Brown (Woodmill HS), Louise Harley (Lochgelly HS), Arran Howe (Bell Baxter HS), Kal Smith (Woodmill HS), Michelle Harley (Lochgelly HS), Shane White (Bell Baxter HS), Gary Fraser (Lochgelly HS), Jordan Clark (Woodmill HS), Dylon McKay (Buckhaven HS), Isaac Fraser (Balwearie HS), Dionne Mackie (Balwearie HS),Dean Bruce (Bell Baxter HS),Adam Richards (Balwearie HS), Shane White (Bell Baxter HS) and Kieran Young (Madras Coll).

Similarly from within the senior competitions there were excellent performances from Maurice Paterson (East Fife CSS), Pauline Bryson (Lochgelly HS Sports Club), Nikki Baxter (West Fife CSS), Glen Miller (Lochgelly HS Sports Club), Graham Law (DSF), Ricky McGuire (West Fife CSS), Sandy Allan (Lochgelly HS Sports Club), John Millar (Lochgelly HS Sports Club) and Stephen Burns (Carnock).

The guest of honour at the Championships was Owen Miller from Dunfermline who recently learned that he has been included on the long list of athletes for Team GB for the IPC World Athletics Championships in Qatar. Owen was awarded a lifetime achievement award by Disability Sport Fife for his contribution to athletics in Fife and for being such an inspiration to up and coming young athletes with a learning disability in Fife. Owen presented medals throughout the championships.

Photo: Atlanta Crawford and Philip Callander
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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Fife Athlete Wins Highland Games Race

For the second successive year the Cupar Highland Games Committee included an invitation 800 metres for athletes with a learning disability. Athletes travelled to the Duffus Park from the north and west of Scotland to compete in this unique race but it was the scratch athlete from Fife who came home in first place. The race is a collaboration between the Games organisers and Disability Sport Fife.

Owen Miller from Dunfermline Track and Field is Scotland’s leading middle distance athlete in the T20 class for athletes with a learning disability. Owen’s time for 800 metres is around 2 minutes and that earned him the position of back marker, running off scratch. Owen lived up to his ranking with a strong confident run from the start which saw him overhaul his opponents with one lap remaining. Owen has been running well this season both indoors and outdoors and has been long listed by GB Athletics for the IPC World Championships in Qatar.

Carl Furnham from Banchory won the inaugural event in 2014 and was given a start of 50 metres by the handicapper. Carl finished the race strongly to take second place with young Fraser Armstrong from Red Star Glasgow, running off 60 metres, finishing close behind in third. Ian Urquhart from Aberdeen Metro finished in fourth and like Fraser was competing in his first Cupar Highland Games. The Games Chieftain presented the prizes to successful athletes.

Photo: Chieftain, Fraser Armstrong, Owen Miller, Carl Furnham and Ian Urquhart. 
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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First Win for Fife School

History was made at the 2015 Brodie Gala for swimmers with severe and complex needs at Cupar Pool. For the first time the pupils from John Fergus School in Glenrothes won the Inter Schools competition and the AH Brodie Cup.

The Brodie Gala is the longest running swim meet organised by Disability Sport Fife with support from the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust. The first gala was held back in 1976 and previous team winners include Kilmaron (11 wins), Headwell (21 wins), Lochgelly North (4 wins), Rosslyn (2 wins). This was the 39th staging of the Brodie Gala.

Participating Schools this year were John Fergus school, Hyndhead from Buckhaven, Calaiswood from Dunfermline and Kilmaron from Cupar. As well as finishing runners up in the Inter Schools event, Kilmaron pupils finished second in the Inter Schools relay. Frazer Arnott from Kilmaron just lost out in a finger tip touch to Ewan Forman John Fergus in the Trophy race for the leading male swimmers and Danielle Young John Fergus won the equivalent race for girls. Ewan and Danielle also collected gold medals for 50 metres freestyle and backstroke.

The appeal of the Brodie Gala is that it offers events for learners with severe and complex needs of all levels of ability. For the most able there are 50 and 25 metre races and for novice swimmers there are single and two breadth events. For the most severely physically impaired pupils there is also an opportunity to compete and for those just starting to learn to swim there is the option of a walking race.

Additional races were won by Frazer Arnott (Kilmaron), Daniel Ballantine (Kilmaron), Cameron Robertson (Hyndhead), Barrie Strachan (John Fergus), Morgan Young (John Fergus), Liam Johnston (John Fergus), Ryan Finlayson (Kilmaron), Cameron Hay (John Fergus), Finlay Jack (Calaiswood),  Barrie Strachan (John Fergus), Lauren Frazek (John Fergus)

Photo: John Fergus School swimmers
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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Fife Throwing Frames Make a Difference

With support from Scottish Athletics and REMAP, Disability Sport Fife has established a seated throws session as part of the weekly run, jump and throws session on Wednesday evenings in Glenrothes. The overall session is managed by DSF coach Pamela Robson and the throws session is led by new coach David Brown. Under David’s guidance the group has grown since the new throwing frames were built and delivered by REMAP.

DSF has welcomed back Kenny Suttie (Coalton of Balgonie) to the throwing group. Kenny was one of Scotland’s leading wheelchair athletes and always a very competent discus thrower. Kenny is now throwing shot, discus and javelin and will make his return to competitive sport at the Fife Championships at Pitreavie.



Lewis Barnett (Cupar) and Jonny Brown (Thornton) are regulars at the seated throws session. Jonny recently took part in the Scottish Athletics Field Events Grand Prix Series and using the new throwing frame threw a PB of 11.70m in the 1kg discus, and consistently threw anything from 10.77 to 11.7 with his 6 throws. Jonny then threw a PB of 3.59m in the 3.25kg shot. This was a consistent distance give or take a few cm.

There are almost 60 throwing events included in the programme for the Disability Sport Fife Track and Field Championships in addition to over 100 track events. The introduction of the throwing frames to Fife has sparked an interest in throwing across the Kingdom. Many thanks Scottish Athletics and REMAP.

Photo: Jonny Brown in training
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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Fife Athlete Joins UK Programme

Dunfermline athlete Owen Miller has recently been selected as an Athlete Rep for the UK Sports Association national campaign, My Sport, My Voice!  Owen is one of GBs most successful middle distance athletes in the T20 classification for athletes with an intellectual impairment, and is also a member on the Scottish Disability Sport Athlete Academy. 

My Sport, My Voice is a London 2012 legacy project, funded through Spirit of 2012, to help raise the profile of the UK’s high performance athletes with a learning disability. Owen joins Scotland’s Robert Ferrol (Athletics) and Scott Quin (Swimming) who are already on the programme as two of the 13 Athlete Ambassadors who officially launched the programme in March 2015.

Owen received an invitation to compete in the class T20 1500 metres at the Bedford International Games at the end of May and comfortably won the race in a time of 4:06.59. Earlier in the month he ran 4:05.09 at the Grangemouth Open Graded meet and at the BMC Regional Races in Glasgow on Friday 5th June he recorded 2:00.39 for 800 metres, his best outdoor performance for some time. Owen is working hard with coaches Gemma Nicol and Steve Doig to try and return to the form that established him as a potential Paralympian in 2012. 

Owen received a massive boost recently from Athletics GB when he was informed that he is on the long list of athletes being considered for the IPC World Championships in Qatar.

Owen Miller is a true role model for athletes with a learning disability and Disability Sport Fife recently awarded him a Lifetime Achievement Award at the DSF Annual Awards Evening. Owen has inspired many young Fife athletes to strive for his high levels of performance. The UK Sports Association has similarly recognised exactly what this young Fife athlete has to offer by inducting him on to the My Sport, My Voice programme. Those of who know him well are certain he will be a great athlete representative.

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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Fife Newcomer Makes Major Impact

Richard Osborn from Cowdenbeath recently signed up with Disability Sport Fife and within three months he has made significant progress. Following his athlete induction meeting, Richard agreed to swim in the DSF swimming championships in Glenrothes and in that first swim meet it was clear he had performance potential. Qualification for the Scottish Championships at Grangemouth led to another series of fine swims and recognition that Richard had a performance swimming career ahead. Richard’s excellent swims helped Fife to a win in the team competition at the “nationals”.

Richard is 27 and a diving instructor. In August 2009, an accident in Cyprus left him with a spinal paralysis at the level T6/T7. Richard is a wheelchair user and his new swimming training regime has to take account of the functional restriction he now has in his lower limbs and trunk. Every training session is about learning how to adapt but at the same time strive for perfection in stroke technique.

DSF facilitated an introduction to Carnegie Swimming Club and introduced Richard to head coach John Szaranek who has agreed to coach Richard. Richard has signed up for the Scottish Disability Sport Performance Gala at Tollcross International Swimming Centre in mid June. On the same weekend he will receive a classification from British Swimming. Richard’s performance career will then be well and truly launched as he competes in his first long course swim meet against Scotland’s leading Para sport swimmers.

 

Richard now works for ENABLE in Dysart and is keen to try other sports. Richard has already had a tennis coaching session with Alan Russell at Dunfermline Tennis Club and hopes to follow in the footsteps of fellow DSF members Brad Stewart and Graham McIntyre and try wheelchair curling. Richard has already had a spell in wheelchair basketball with Lothian Phoenix but his swimming abilities and potential have encouraged him to concentrate on the sport which has offered him so much throughout his life.

DSF is proud to support Richard as a new member and help him on a sporting pathway which hopefully will assist him to meet his personal goals as a very talented sports person.
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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Fife Athlete Role Model

Callum Sloan continues to progress as a wheelchair track athlete with performance potential. Participation in the 2015 London mini marathon confirmed where he currently sits within his age group in Great Britain and he cannot wait until the 2016 event. In the meantime he will continue to listen and learn from coach Pamela Robson and concentrate on recording personal best times at the Disability Sport Fife (DSF) track and field championships and other race meets around the country over the summer.

Disability Sport Fife recently recognised Callum at the Annual Awards Evening by presenting him with the emerging junior award. This award recognises the young sports person who has demonstrated most progress during the season past and is one to watch for the future. Callum is very committed to track athletics but also turns his hand to swimming, fitness training and any other sports opportunities that come his way. DSF considers Callum a perfect role model for young wheelchair users.

Instigated by Active Schools staff Andrew Baird and Fiona Ashton Jones, wheelchair rugby was recently offered as an option in the Sports Festival hosted by Queen Anne HS for Primary pupils moving schools after the summer. As well as celebrating the forthcoming World Cup, Callum and his fellow pupils were able to experience the wheelchair version of the game in a learning, festival environment. 

There was no shortage of enthusiasm, quality wheelchair handing skills and positive feedback from all participants. During the Festival de brief in the main hall, Mr Billington the Depute Headteacher of Queen Anne HS took the opportunity to present the DSF award to Callum.

As well as being a very committed sports ambassador Callum devotes time to raising funds for Disability Sport Fife. The London mini marathon was a challenge in itself but Callum chose to seek sponsors for his efforts and raise around £1300 for DSF funds. The money will be used to help sustain the weekly sessions organised by DSF for participants with a physical, sensory or learning disability of all levels of ability.

 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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Wheelchair Rugby Comes to Fife

To celebrate the forthcoming Rugby World Cup and promote inclusive sport, Active Schools Coordinator Andrew Baird approached Disability Sport Fife President Richard Brickley and invited him to deliver a wheelchair rugby workshop at Queen Anne HS as part of the P7/S1 Festival of Sport. With two young wheelchair users moving up to the High School after the summer holidays, the workshop would provide participants with the opportunity to experience the skills and challenges of wheelchair sports. 

A briefing paper was written detailing the rules, practices and format of the workshop. 40 places were offered and all were filled by the enthusiastic Sports Festival participants. Participants were introduced to wheelchair handling skills and then sports specific skills. The final half of the workshop concentrated on playing a modified version of wheelchair rugby. Every pupil approached all three sessions with enthusiasm and no shortage of skill and endeavour. All matches were played in the spirit of fair play and with considerable determination. Participants remarked on how demanding it is to propel a wheelchair and concentrate on the skills of the sport of wheelchair rugby.

Wheelchair rugby was a great hit at the Queen Anne HS Sports Festival. 40 young pupils were offered the opportunity to learn about wheelchair handing and wheelchair rugby. Participants now have a greater awareness of the challenges faced by fellow pupils who rely on a wheelchair for sports.

The workshop was collaboration between Active schools and Disability Sport Fife. Scottish Disability Sport and DSF provided sports wheelchairs and a small team of Lloyds volunteers supported the workshop.
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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Fife Swimmers Honoured

Lucy Walkup from Stirling Swimming Club was voted the Disability Sport Fife Swimmer of the Year for 2014 and Steven McCormick from FINS was identified as the most improved swimmer of the year. Lucy received the Leslie Inglis Trophy for only the second time in her illustrious career and Steven the Woodlands Parents Trophy, won by Lucy on four occasions. 

Lucy is focussing on the World Deaf Swimming Championships in Texas in the summer as well as her studies at the University of Stirling. 

 

The young Glenrothes swimmer has continued to enjoy considerable success at national level and among her major successes in the year past was winning the Open breast stroke trophy for the seventh occasion at the GB Deaf Swimming Championships.

Stephen was called up to swim for Team Scotland for the first time in 2014 and medalled in his first major championships. As well as swimming Steven is turning into a fine young badminton player and was called up to compete for the Fife Sportshall team for the 2014 Championships. Stephen is one of the most talented physically disabled juniors in Fife. 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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Retiring Fife Teacher Recognised

Retiring Balwearie HS senior teacher Teresa Hunter was awarded the Service to Sport award and Thomson Cup for years of promoting the DSF partnership with Education Services. Thanks to Teresa’s encouragement many pupils with additional support needs over many years have taken up sport and engaged with DSF. Balwearie HS pupils with additional support needs are among the most active junior members within Disability Sport Fife and there record in events organised by Disability Sport Fife and Scottish Disability Sport is exceptional.

Teresa (centre) received her award from the Provost of Fife and chair of Scottish Disability Sport Janice Eaglesham.

 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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Fife Young Volunteers Receive Awards

Disability Sport Fife (DSF) prides itself on the quality of young volunteers that it can call upon to support weekly sessions and annual events. Kirkcaldy HS for example provided a team of sports leaders to assist with the running of the DSF Swimming, Badminton and Athletics Championships during 2014/2015.

Two young volunteers from the many who assisted throughout the year past were recognised at the 2015 DSF Awards Evening and presented with awards in the name of the late Anne Hay by the provost of Fife and Chair of Scottish Disability Sport Janice Eaglesham.

Elise Wright-Davies has for the past two years been a key volunteer at the weekly DSF run, jump throws session led by coach Pamela Robson. Elise never misses a session and has proven that she is particularly proficient when working with younger athletes with additional support needs in particular. Under her guidance newcomers have settled into the session and are now demonstrating proficiency as young athletes. Elise is demonstrating enormous potential as a coach and is about to attend her first DSF workshop.

Ross Cameron came to the attention of DSF through Active Schools coordinator Jennifer Mann and what at first was intended to be a 12 week college placement has turned out to be two years of voluntary service. Ross is an invaluable volunteer assistant to DSF coach Alex Bird at the FUNdamentals, racquet sports and badminton sessions. Each week he commits around three hours and many young people with a physical, sensory or learning disability have benefitted from his expertise and attention. 



 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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Balwearie HS Pupils Recognised

Two Balwearie HS pupils with additional support needs were recognised at the Disability Sport Fife Annual Awards evening and presented with awards by the Provost of Fife and the Chair of Scottish Disability Sport Janice Eaglesham.

Liam Downie was voted footballer of the year and received an award in the name of the Penman family from Kirkcaldy. Liam was the leading scorer at the 2015 DSF Football 7s supported by Kirkcaldy HS and the Scottish FA. Liam also led the Balwearie HS 7s team to represent Fife at the Scottish Championships. Liam has also represented Balwearie HS and Fife across a range of sports throughout the year.

Jennifer Paton received the Junior Endeavour Award in the name of Fife Paralympian Caroline Baird from Cupar. Jennifer has had another wonderful sporting year excelling in swimming in particular at local and national level. Jennifer has been a wonderful ambassador for her school and has been hugely supportive of emerging young athletes and players. Jennifer is an excellent all round young sportswoman. 



 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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West Fife CSS Recognised by Disability Sport Fife

West Fife Community Support Services was recognised at the Disability Sport Fife (DSF) Awards Evening in a number of categories for the excellent programme they provide throughout the year for teenagers and adults with additional support needs. Physical activity including sport is only one of many activities offered to service users throughout the week in settings throughout the west of Fife.

Wayne Samut from West Fife CSS was the first athlete to be recognised at the Awards Evening for the significant contribution he has made to disability sport in Fife over a number of years. Wayne was one of two winners of an Access Trophy for significant achievement in sport. Wayne has represented Fife in a numbers of sports and has been particularly successful in badminton, swimming, archery and athletics in particular.

Nicky Baxter from West Fife CSS was the proud recipient of a senior Endeavour Award in the name of Tom Donaldson. Nicky is fast emerging as the leading all round senior female competitor with additional support needs of the present time with some outstanding performances lately in swimming and athletics in particular. Nicky has moved through the ranks in her sports and is now competing regularly in higher level competitions.

West Fife CSS staff member has been at the forefront of many sports initiatives involving service users and DSF. Ian’s skills and abilities transcend a number of sports but in archery, athletics, indoor sports and football he has made a significant contribution. Ian was awarded a Special Recognition award in the name of Fife Paralympian Adam Morley for his support of West Fife CSS athletes engaged in sport. Quiet, unassuming, caring and committed are just some of the qualities identified in the citation read out on the night.

The Ambassador of the Year Award, in the name of the late Alec Thorburn, treasurer of DSF, was introduced in 2014 and awarded to Isla Lumsden Head teacher of Kilmaron School in Cupar. West Fife CSS senior staff member Anna Capon became the 2015 Ambassador of the Year because of her many years of support of DSF and for encouraging so much partnership working between the two organisations. Successive generations of West Fife CSS athletes and staff have engaged with DSF for local, national or international projects. Physical activity including sport features prominently in the lives of many West Fife CSS service users and the partnership between DSF and West Fife CSS is considered a model of good practice between the voluntary sector and Social Work Services. Anna has been the driving force behind so many successful programmes and projects.

Presentations of the DSF Awards were made by the Provost of Fife and Chair of Scottish Disability Sport. Janice eaglesham.

Photos: Wayne Sammut, Nicky Baxter, Ian Paterson and Anna Capon


Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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Team Fife Runners Up at Tollcross

Disability Sport Fife swimmer of the year and team captain Craig Rodgie from Dalgety Bay and Edinburgh University Swim Club led from the front as the Fife swim team attempted to retain the national team title at the Scottish Championships for swimmers with a learning disability at Tollcross International Swimming Centre in Glasgow.  Competing in five open class events, where his main opposition was fellow GB International Scott Quin from Lothian, Craig won 50m backstroke, 50m butterfly and rounded off the championships with a victory in 100m freestyle in a time of 58.16 secs, 8 1/100ths of a second ahead of Scott.  Scott is a specialist breaststroker and retained his 50m breaststroke and 100 IM titles.  The Fife captain was recovering from a leg injury which made his performances all the more remarkable and inspired his fellow team members to a second place finish in the team competition behind West of Scotland and ahead of Tayside.  The Fife team won a total of 36 medals which included 12 national titles and 13 silver medals. 

In 25m backstroke there were national titles and gold medals for East Fife Community Support Services swimmers Julie Allan, Jemma Hancock and Andrew Hunter plus Charlene Took.  In 25m backstroke Iona McFadzean (Glenrothes HS), Veronica Cockburn (West Fife CSS), Mark Walker East Fife CSS) and Hannah Moffat (West CSS) all won silver medals.  Steven Penman (West Fife CSS) won a silver medal in 50m backstroke and Michael Wilkie (East Fife CSS) won bronze in 25m backstroke. The outstanding swim in the morning session was the gold medal swim by Craig Rodgie over 50m backstroke in the open class to retain his national title.

The middle section of the championships is devoted to butterfly and breaststroke.  The session got off to the best of starts with Craig Rodgie winning the 50m fly and shortly thereafter Paul Coulthard picked up a silver medal in 25m fly.  Jennifer Paton (Balwearie HS) won a gold medal in 50m breaststroke and this was closely followed by silver medal swims by Ryan Peterson (East Fife CSS) in 50m breaststroke and Charlene Took in 25m breaststroke.  The session was completed with bronze medal swims by Adam Richards (Balwearie HS) in 25m breaststroke and Craig Donaldson (Central Fife CSS) in 50m breaststroke.

The final section of the championships is reserved for the freestyle events over 25m, 50m and the Blue Riband race, the open 100m.  The session kicked off with the final of the 100m IM and Craig Rodgie won a bronze medal for Team Fife.  Gold medals followed in 25m freestyle for Angela Robertson (Central Fife CSS), Andrea Bell (West Fife CSS), Matthew Gunn (Scottish Autism) and Jemma Hancock (East Fife CSS).  The Fife swimmers then had a whole run of silver medals in 25m freestyle from Barrie Sanderson (West Fife CSS), Matthew Robertson (West Fife CSS), Stuart Alcock (West Fife CSS), Charlene Took and Wayne Sammut (West Fife CSS) in 50m freestyle.  Six bronze medals were also won in this section by Nicola Eccles (East Fife CSS), John Lockhart (West Fife CSS), Donald Farren (West Fife CSS), Kyle Baxter (West Fife CSS), Wendy Donald (West Fife CSS) and Jamie Thomas from Aberlour.  The session ended perfectly with Craig Donaldson (Central Fife CSS) picking up bronze in the 50m freestyle and then the outstanding performance by Craig Rodgie to win gold in 100m freestyle.

DSF swim coach Kay Maxwell was team manager of the Fife team for the first time and was delighted with the performance of the Fife swimmers and the support provided by the Fife team support staff.  The National Championships are organised on a time banded basis with every swimmer swimming for team points towards the national team trophy.  Every swimmer within the Fife team played their part and had it not been for an unfortunate number of last minute call offs, the Fife team might possibly have retained the Kintore trophy.  Coaches and swimmers are determined in 2016 bring the trophy back to Fife.
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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First Fife Cross Country Championships

The first Disability Sport Fife (DSF) Cross Country Championships were held at the Beveridge Park in Kirkcaldy.  Cross country has become an extremely popular activity in the Secondary Schools for pupils with additional support needs.  Each year the East Series events and National Championships organised by Scottish Disability Sport and Scottish Athletics are well supported by Fife schools. 

DSF was offered the opportunity to join forces with Fife AC and organise a regional championships for athletes with a disability on the same day as the mainstream Primary Schools Cross Country Championships.   DSF is indebted to the volunteers from Fife Athletic Club who turned out in significant numbers to support the championships and race organiser Steve Doig in particular who provided so much support in the lead up to the event and during the championships.  In the first year of the championships 80 athletes entered from Lochgelly HS, Woodmill HS, Balwearie HS, Buckhaven HS, Dunfermline HS, Bell Baxter HS, Madras College and community sports clubs.

Competitors competed in their school year groups over 1km, 2km and 3km.  The first three athletes in each year group over the three distances scored points towards the team trophy.  At the end of the championships the top three schools were Balwearie HS (22 points), Lochgelly HS (19 points) and Buckhaven HS (16 points). 

In the S1 girls 1km race the winner was Chloe Ramsay (Lochgelly HS), Megan Wilson (Woodmill HS) finished second and Jennifer Dunn (Lochgelly HS) took third place.  In the equivalent S1 boys event the winner was Shakeel Ul Haq (Lochgelly HS) with second place going to Connor Brown (Woodmill HS) and Sean Wright (Balwearie HS) lifting the bonze.  The S2 girls 1km race was an all Lochgelly HS affair with Louse Harley taking the title and Michelle Harley finishing runner up.  The boys S2 race resulted in a win for Alex Evans (Balwearie HS) with Arran Howe (Bell Baxter HS) and Aiden Fleming (Lochgelly HS) finishing second and third respectively.  In the S3 1km race for girls Abbie Steggles (Dunfermline HS) won the title with Leah Simpson (Lochgelly HS) finishing second and Caitlin Pryde (Madras College) third.  The 1km S3 boys race resulted in a win for Dean Bruce (Bell Baxter HS) with Reece Dickson (Balwearie HS) finishing second and Shane White (Bell Baxter HS) third.

The senior year groups in the schools of S4/S5/S6 were amalgamated for the competition and in the girls event the winner was Marie Wilson (Lochgelly HS) with Taylor McDowall (Balwearie HS) finishing second and Leigh-Anne Macdonald (Balwearie HS) finishing third.  In the equivalent boys race S4/S5/S6 the champion was Isaac Fraser (Balwearie HS) with Irvin Wilson (Balwearie HS) and Fraser Wilson (Lochgelly HS) finishing second and third respectively. 

There was a smaller entry in the 2km races and the section got off to a fiery start with Casey Donaldson (Woodmill HS) winning the Boys S2 race.  The S3 boys 3km race was a close run affair with Denyn Caldwell (Buckhaven HS) lifting the title ahead of Stuart Taylor (Balwearie HS) and Matthew Blair (Woodmill HS).  The 2km races final event was the S4/S5/S6 boys race where Brandon Eason (Balwearie HS) won the title ahead of his school mates Liam Downie in second and Dylan Fotheringham third.

The final races of the 2015 championships was over 3km and there was an outstanding run in the S2 boys where Dylan McKay (Buckhaven HS) won the title ahead of his fellow Buckhaven HS pupil Leo Henry.  Richard Allan (Balwearie HS) won the S3 boys title ahead of Madras College pupils Cameron Caird in second and Kieran Young in third.  Cheslea Burns (Buckhaven HS) was the leading girl of the championships with a win in the S4/S5/S6 girls 3km.  In the equivalent race for boys the outstanding Sam Fernando (Bell Baxter HS) lifted the title ahead of Owen Wight (Buckhaven HS). 

There was an adults 3km to round off the championships and Maurice Paterson from Wormit and Fife AC won the title ahead of Graham Law from Glenrothes.

Both DSF and Fife AC were delighted with the success of the championships and the numbers taking part.  Presentations were made by Elspeth Wallace from Fife AC, one of the hard working volunteers who had successfully organised a full day of races involving Primary Schools pupils and athletes with additional support needs.  There is no doubt that the first Fife Cross Country Championships were a great success.
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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Double Fife Success in Wales

The 2015 British Triathlon Para Triathlon Championships were held in Llanelli in Wales and the only two Scots participating in the event were world champion Alison Patrick from Dunfermline competing in the PT5 class for visually impaired Para triathletes and Stefan Hoggan from Auchtermuchty competing in the PT4 class for ambulant physically disabled Para triathletes.

Alison is the reigning world champion in her class and she started the race favourite and did not disappoint.  With an overall finishing time of 01:11:08.00 she finished first in her classification group, sixth overall in the Championships and first female to cross the line after the run.  Alison’s time for her swim was 0:12:37.35 but unfortunately because of a lost chip her bike and run times were not recorded.  Alison’s performance in Wales confirmed her as Britain’s leading visually impaired Para triathlete and a strong prospect for inclusion in Team GB for the Paralympic Games in Rio in 2016 where Para Triathlon will be included on the programme for the first time. What made the performance all the more pleasing was that this was her first full triathlon with her new guide Hazel Smith. Alison next important challenge will be the European Championships which she is looking forward to with renewed confidence.

The second Fife representative in Wales was Stefan Hoggan who is an absolute novice at Para Triathlon.  After 10 years in competitive swimming Stefan has made the switch with enormous support from British Triathlon. Thanks to hard work and the expertise of coach Alistair Donaldson he is making significant progress.  His overall finishing position in his class was fourth in a time of 01:10:39.85, recording the fifth fastest time overall.  Stefan recorded the second fastest swim time of 0:11:30.00 but against his nearest rivals he finished slightly behind in the cycle and run.  Where Stefan appeared to lose a fair amount of time was in the transitions between swim to bike and bike to run where he recorded the slowest times.  This is something his coach will work on in an effort to find improvements.  Stefan was informed on Monday 18 May that British Triathlon plan to retain him on their athlete support programme for the next 12 months in the belief that he can continue to improve and become a serious candidate for inclusion in Team GB for Rio in 2016.

These are exciting times for the two Fife Para triathletes as the sport grows in popularity and the quality of athlete participant continues to rise.


Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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Fife Open 2015

Elmwood Golf Club once again hosted the 2015 Fife Open for players with a physical, sensory or learning disability over the Elmwood course in Cupar. SRUC students as always played a key role in the organisation of the event on the day and the hospitality extended by Golf Club staff and members was as always exceptional. The Fife Open is organised by Disability Sport Fife in conjunction with Fife College and staff member Craig Martin was a key member of the organising team during the lead up and on the day.

The top three players in Division 1 over 18 holes were Andrew Stuart (Dunblane) with a net score of 65 and David Mitchell (Highland) and Gareth Elms (West) finished in second and third with scores of 71 and73 respectively. Robin Anderson (Glasgow) won the Division 2 title with a net 75 and Lloyd Simpson (Fife) and Paul McGinley (Edinburgh) completed the top three positions with scores of 76 and 77. Paul was the leading physically disabled player competing in the Open.

There were two 9 hole Division competitions and Christopher Corbett (Dumfries) won the “A” competition with a score of 44 and Rebecca McCreadie the “B” competition with a score of 58. Chris Upton from Highland was second in the “A” event with 46 and Craig Bernard (Fife) third with 48. Ray Malcolmson and Blair Simpson from Glasgow finished second and third in the “B” competition with scores of 63 and 69 respectively.

Unique to the Fife Open is a competition for novice players organised as a series of skills tests – driving, putting and chipping. Players were organised into three Levels and the winners and runners up were as follows:

Level 1

1st Philip Callander (West Fife CSS) – 91

2nd Ben Johnstone (Glenrothes HS) – 77

Level 2

1st Craig Whyte (Glenrothes HS) – 61

2nd Jordan Dunn ( Glenrothes HS) – 59

Level 3

1st Bradley Smith (Glenrothes HS)

2nd = Steven Arthur (West Fife CSS) - 54

2nd = Ian Hastie (Glenrothes HS) – 54

Photo: L Gareth Elms winner of the scratch competition and R Andrew Stuart best handicap score.
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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DSF Recognises Leisure Trust Staff

At the recent Awards Evening of Disability Sport Fife (DSF) two Fife Sports and Leisure Trust (FSLT) staff were recognised for the very significant contribution they have made to DSF over many years.

Steve Donnelly is the maestro of all things technical within the Leisure Trust. For over 20 years Steve has been on hand to help DSF key personnel with IT challenges, computer purchases, sound applications and marketing and publicity etc. Under Steve’s guidance, the organisation has become much more professional in how it delivers its events programme and celebrates the success of its athletes and teams. Steve is the staff member who never says no and is always willing to support DSF with whatever technical issue requires attention.

Helima Mutch was mentored by retired FSLT teacher Aileen Penny during the last few years of her career. Since then Helima has led from the front as the lead coach of the two large multi sports weekly sessions organised at the sports and leisure centre in Glenrothes.  Over 100 adults with a learning disability attend the weekly sessions and as well as being a coach and organising each session, Helima is responsible for all new admissions and coordinating paperwork. Under her stewardship the sessions have grown in numbers and range of athlete ability. The two multi sports sessions are incredible success stories and have been running for over 40 years.

“DSF has a formal Service Level Agreement with the FSLT and nobody epitomises more the strength of the working partnership than Steve Donnelly and Helima Mutch” said DSF President Richard Brickley.

The Awards were presented by the Provost of Fife Councillor Jim Leishman and the Chair of Scottish Disability Sport Janice Eaglesham
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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Fife Honours Kilmaron Staff Member

At the recent Disability Sport Fife (DSF) Awards evening, a Kilmaron Staff member was presented with a Special Recognition Award for her very significant contribution to the sporting lives of children and young people with severe and complex needs in the east Fife area in particular.

Some of the skills and abilities of Jacqui Moran from Kilmaron were identified as follows in the citation read out on the night. 

> Organises all the Kilmaron teams for DSF events, including swimming galas and Sports Festival competitions

> Collects pupil performance data and completes all the DSF paperwork on behalf of Kilmaron school.

> Is enthusiastic about INSET or training offered to improve her skills in supporting youngsters to participate in sport

> During school hours supports youngsters to attend weekly DSF sessions or events

> Regularly gives of her own time to support youngsters who attend DSF sessions and community events 

Kilmaron Headteacher Isla Lumsden said “Kilmaron is both grateful and proud of the effort that Jacqui makes and the dedication that she shows to both our youngsters and DSF as an organisation. Because of her unavailability on the night it was an honour for me to receive the award on Jacqui’s behalf. I am indebted to DSF for recognising her passion and commitment”.

Photo: Jacqui Moran, pupil Frazer Arnott and Headteacher Isla Lumsden.
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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Exceptional Fife 2015 Coaches

At the 2015 Awards Evening, Disability Sport Fife recognised two outstanding coaches who have contributed so much to established and emerging athletes across a range of sports.

Sarah Jane Ewing from Dunfermline is the high performance bowls coach and Director behind double world champion Maria Spencer from the same town. Maria is visually impaired and she not only retained her singles world title at the 2015 World championships in New Zealand, but went one better and won a mixed pairs silver medal. As a Director Sarah Jane is the eyes of Maria on the green and as her coach she draws on her own personal experience as an international player in mainstream bowls. Their relationship is exceptional and their track record to date in national and international disability sport is exceptional.

Pamela Robson is a teacher of pupils with additional support needs at Balwearie HS in Kirkcaldy and a DSF run, jump and throws coach at Pitreavie Athletics Centre and also the sports centre in Glenrothes. In her school role she has encouraged so many youngsters with additional support needs to become involved in sport and train as often as possible. Within the community she has inspired participants of all levels of ability to try and be all they can be in athletics in particular. Pamela coaches individuals and leads Fife teams and under her guidance Disabilty Sport Fife is enjoying an exceptional period of success track and field.

The Provost of Fife, Councillor Jim Leishman MBE and Scottish Disability Sport Chair Janice Eaglesham presented awards to Sarah Jane and Pamela at the recent DSF Awards Evening.
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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Balwearie HS Compete at Nationals

Balwearie HS players represented Fife at the Scottish League Regional 7s finals for pupils with additional support needs organized by the Scottish FA at Ravenscraig in the west of Scotland. Balwearie HS had earned the right to represent Fife by winning the Fife 7s League played over three sessions at Kirkcaldy HS.

The Fife champions played 5 games, winning one, losing three and drawing another. At first glance this may look disappointing but the games lost were by narrow margins and with better finishing in front of goal the outcomes may have been different. The experience is all part of the learning process. There is no doubt the young players have come on considerably since joining the Fife Football Performance Academy and accessing quality coaching from Scottish FA coach Dave Costello.

Team manager Tom Hunter from Balwearie HS singled out Ryan Dunwoodie and Fife League top scorer Liam Downie for special mention. The boys leave school at the end of the month but it is hoped they will retain their involvement with Disability Sport Fife following excellent careers as juniors across a range of sports. Alex Evans stepped up from the S1/S2 Balwearie HS team to represent the senior squad and played exceptionally well.  

The full squad was:- Dylan Fotheringham, Alex Evans, Ryan Dunwoodie, Suroop Sually, Liam Downie, Brandon Easson, Stuart Taylor and Reece Dickson.

Photo: The Balwearie HS team that won the 2015 Fife 7s League.


Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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Disability Sport Fife AGM

 

The 2015 AGM and Awards Evening of Disability Sport Fife was held on Monday 11th May. Athletes, coaches, players, volunteers, families and representatives from partner organisations attended. 30 individual awards were presented by the Provost of Fife, Councillor Jim Leishman MBE and Janice Eaglesham Chair of Scottish Disability Sport. 

> Click to view gallery

 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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Fife Paratriathlete completes first event

Stefan Hoggan from Auchtermuchty enjoyed a very successful 10 year competitive disability swimming career. Disappointment at not being selected for the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow prompted a change of focus and the young Disability Sport Fife swimmer has enthusiastically seized the exceptional opportunities that have come his way over the past few months.

Stefan was invited by British Triathlon to attend a Talent ID weekend in Loughborough. This led to an invitation to attend a British Triathlon training camp in Lanzarote for two weeks. Once again Stefan made an impression and he was invited by the governing body to attend a three month funded camp at Loughborough. With support from his employers Rowlands Pharmacy from Kinross, Stefan has taken full advantage of the training opportunity and committed himself totally to becoming a GB international.

In preparation for the British Championships in Wales in mid May, Stefan has recently completed his first Paratriathlon in the PT4 class in Leicester. On this occasion the swim was indoors and unfortunately he swam an extra two lengths to record 6.29 for 450 metres. Stefan hopes to swim around 5.30 for the actual 400 metres distance. Stefan then covered the 20K cycle in 36.13 and his 5K run in 19.13 with 40 metre transitions under one minute for an overall time of 1.03.46. Stefan was pleased with his 4th overall age group finish and 16th position overall of 200 competitors.

Stefan is coached by Alistair Donaldson of British Triathlon and now that Paratriathlon is on the Paralympic timetable for Rio he has set his heart on doing all that he can to challenge for a place in Team GB. As well receiving support from British Triathlon, Stefan is grateful to Stuart Wilson of Specsavers for support with contact lenses and East Fife Tri club for providing his first 

 

triathlon suit. Stefan is preparing for the British Championships in Wales where he hopes to improve on his Leicester time and convince GB Triathlon that he is a serious contender for international selection.

 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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Fife Impact Swimmer

Kirsty Brunton from Dalgety Bay visited the Michael Woods Centre for a swim one day and by chance met Disability Sport Fife (DSF) personnel. A meeting was arranged and what followed has changed the swimming focus of Kirsty and her contribution to disability swimming in Fife. Kirsty successfully competed in her first DSF swimming championships at the beginning of March and was then selected for the Fife team for the Scottish Championships in April in Grangemouth. Kirsty’s contribution to a memorable Fife team win was significant and she is now preparing for her next challenge and all that this entails.

 

Kirsty is currently being considered by Scottish Disability Sport (SDS) for inclusion in the Scottish team for the CPISRA World Games in Nottingham in August. These Games have been important to emerging Fife athletes and players in the past as they embark on a career in high performance disability sport. The Games involve leading athletes and players with cerebral palsy from all over the world and although there is a restriction on the range of sports on offer, swimming will be a major element. Kirsty will be 

presented for classification at Tollcross Leisure Centre in Glasgow prior to the mid June Performance gala organised by SDS and Scottish Swimming.

Kirsty arrived in Scotland age 12 and has been swimming from an early age. As well as being a very competent swimmer she has been an RYA sailing instructor for over 20 years and involved in organising the annual youth week in Dalgety Bay for around 50 junior learners. Kirsty was Commodore at Dalgety Bay Sailing Club for two years and has been married to Chris for 9 years and they have a 5 year old daughter called Sarah. Throughout her school years Kirsty was active in team and individual sports but until two months ago had not considered competitive swimming. She is excited about joining a new Fife swimming club, teaming up with a new coach and seeing how far this will take her. Kirsty works for HMRC and left Edinburgh eight years ago to settle in Dalgety Bay. Within a very short period of time she has made a very significant contribution to Disability Sport Fife.

Photo: Kirsty celebrating her success at the Scottish Championships with daughter Sarah.
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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Fife World Paratriathlon Champion

In August 2014 Alison Patrick from Dunfermline became the World Champion in her class in Paratriathlon in Edmonton Canada at the ITU World Triathlon Grand Final. Alison was recruited to Paratriathlon, following a series of athletics injuries, and throughout 2014 she recorded top three finishes in major international events.

In the middle of May 2014 Alison finished third at the Yokohama ITU World Paratriathlon event and at the end of the month finished one place higher at the ITU World Paratriathlon event in London. In June she finished third at the European Championships before heading to Canada for the event that firmly established her as a world star in Paratriathlon.

Alison is coached by Jonathon Riall and has been a member of the World Class lottery funded British Paratriathlon squad since 2014. Alison is visually impaired and her guide athlete in 2014 was Jenny Manners. British Triathlon recruited three guides from a guide to gold campaign and during 2015 they will guide different athletes.

Alison previously swum as a junior and enjoyed a very successful track career as a middle distance runner. 

Alison competed at international level over 1500 metres and 800 metres and won an IBSA world title over the latter distance. Alison also represented Scotland at the World Mountain Trophy as a mainstream athlete.

Alison is currently preparing for the British Championships in Wales in mid May and Hazel Smith who is based in Edinburgh will be her guide. Alison has the ambition of representing Great Britain in Rio in 2016. Professionally Alison is a physiotherapist in Fife and an exceptionally talented swimmer, cyclist and athlete. If her 2014 performances are anything to go by she will realise her dream of representing GB at the 2016 Paralympic Games.

 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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Fife Boccia Championships Revived

Kieran Steer from Crossgates has taken performance boccia to a new level with outstanding results at home and overseas. Disability Sport Fife is keen however to attract more players to the sport and each week an enthusiastic group of learners meet at the Michael Woods Sports and Leisure Centre for an hour of coaching from DSF boccia coach Catherine Carruthers.

Progress has been positive this past year and DSF decided to revive the Fife boccia championships after a break of several years. Family and friends turned out over two evenings for the final stages and to observe some very close and exciting ties. Craig Kinnel won the title by one shot from Rachel Page and Wade Gilmour and Neil McEwan collected bronze medals.

Photo: front row; Neil, Rachel, Wade and Craig.
 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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Seated Throwing Development in Fife

DSF is committed to developing seated throwing and creating opportunities for non ambulant throwers to develop their skills in field athletics.

In David Brown DSF has a new and enthusiastic throws coach. In Jonny Brown (Thornton) and Lewis Barnett (Cupar), DSF has identified the first enthusiastic young throwers to take up the challenge. There is a strong possibility that a very talented thrower from previous years will come out of retirement and at least one other Fife wheelchair user will join the squad.

Throwing frames are located in Glenrothes and Dunfermline, thanks to support from REMAP, Scottish Athletics and the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust. The design of the frame offers non ambulant throwers stability and the opportunity to maximize power from their trunk and arms. Interested participants should contact the DSF administrator Norma Buchanan 03451 555555 Ext 444989-norma.buchanan@fife.gov.uk.  


Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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New Fife Summer Bowls Sessions

Disability Sport Fife (DSF) in partnership with the Beveridge Park  Bowling Club, Kirkcaldy, and the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust is offering coach led sessions for bowlers with a physical, sensory or learning disability during May and June…. initially.

Sessions will help prepare Fife bowlers for Scottish and Inter Area competitions and 2015 outdoor and carpet bowls Scottish Championships. Details are as follows:
 

From 7th May until 25th June inclusive - outdoor - coach Matt Thomson
Thursday 2.00pm  4.00pm 
Beveridge Park BC £3.00 per session

 

From 12th  May until 30th June inclusive - carpet bowls - coach John Hick
Tuesday 11.00am - 1.00pm
Michael Woods Sports & Leisure Centre £4.00 per session

 

Learners and in particular novices, interested in participating, should register in the first instance with Norma Buchanan, Administrator, Disability Sport Fife, Michael Woods Centre, Viewfield, Glenrothes, Fife KY6 2RD     

03451 555555 Ext 444989-norma.buchanan@fife.gov.uk.  Norma is the link with the session coaches.

 

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disablity Sport Fife


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New Tennis Session at Falkland Tennis Club

Disability Sport Fife (DSF) in partnership with Falkland  Tennis Club will be offering coaching for participants with a physical,  sensory or learning disability of all levels of ability during the 2015 season. Falkland Tennis Club coaches Euan Bell and Raj Vaid will be in attendance to support and coach all learners.
 

Details are as follows:

Monday 11th May onwards
10.00am - 12.00pm

Falkland Tennis Club

Price per session £4.00

All potential participants must register their interest in the first instance with Norma Buchanan, Administrator, Disability Sport Fife, Michael Woods Centre, Viewfield, Glenrothes, Fife KY6 2RD. 

 


Email norma.buchanan@fife.gov.uk Tel 03451 555555 Ext: 444989

Norma is the link between DSF members and Falkland Tennis Club. Confirmation that a place has been allocated will be communicated to each interested participant
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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2015 DSF AGM and Awards evening

 

Notice is hereby given that the Thirty-eighth Annual General Meeting of Disability Sport Fife will be held in the Michael Woods Sports & Leisure Centre, Viewfield, Glenrothes KY6 2RD  

Monday 11 May 2015  7.00pm

ALL WELCOME

Light refreshments from 18.30 hrs onwards

(to assist with catering please notify Norma Buchanan, Administrator, Disability Sport Fife, Michael Woods Sports & Leisure Centre, Viewfield, Glenrothes KY6 2RD or email norma.buchanan@fife.gov.uk if you intend to be present)

The evening also includes the Presentation of the DSF Annual Awards by the Provost of Fife Jim Leishman MBE. Disability Sport Fife has enjoyed another successful year and attendees will hear a resume of the many successes recorded by Fife athletes and players with a physical, sensory or learning disability.

 

Photo: Award winners 2014
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Derek Rae 5th at the World Championships

Derek Rae from Kirkcaldy and Anster Haddies recorded a 5th place finish in the IPC World Marathon Championships which were part of the elite athlete programme for the 2015 Virgin London Marathon.

Competing in the T46 class, Derek completed the race in 2.40.40 for a personal best time by four minutes. Derek’s time for the half marathon was 1.18.16 and his overall finishing position placed him at number five in the world. This was Derek’s first run in Team GB colours and he certainly justified his selection. Derek was the only GB ambulant athlete representing his country.

Derek is coached by Ron Morrison of Fife AC and is an active member of Disability Sport Fife. Since a motor cycle accident severely impaired one side of his upper body, Derek has committed himself totally to running and his goal of one day representing Great Britain at a Paralympic Games.

Times in 2015 are much better than before the accident and those who know Derek believe there is still room for improvement. What better time to set a PB than the year before a Paralympic Games against the leading athletes in the world in the class.

 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Sixth place finish for Fife Athlete in London

Competing in the under 14 boys race in his first London mini marathon, Callum Sloan from Dunfermline completed the course in 24.14 for a sixth place finish.

Supported by his family and Disability Sport Fife athletics coach Pamela Robson, Callum soaked up the London atmosphere and enjoyed the occasion immensely. Callum’s time was better than expected and a clear indication of how much he has improved in a relatively short period of time.

In addition to the challenges of competing in his first mini marathon Callum had decided to raise funds for DSF by encouraging financial supporters.

Well done young Callum and also Team Callum. The target next year and the year after will be to improve on his inaugural under 14 time.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Big Weekend for Fife Athlete

Callum Sloan from Dunfermline makes his debut in the 2015 London mini marathon. Under the guidance of Disability Sport Fife (DSF) coach Pamela Robson and with enormous support from his family, Callum heads to the capital to achieve the first of the many milestones he has already set for himself.

Callum is already a member of the DSF Futures squad and in addition to the challenges of competing in his first mini marathon he has decided to encourage friends and family to support his efforts by raising funds for DSF. As a prospective future business man Callum has also secured some sponsorship from Pamela’s brother Mark’s company. Such a switched on, talented young athlete with a very bright future.

Callum is scheduled to move up to High School this year and since receiving his racing wheelchair from the netball club students at the University of St Andrews he has blossomed as an athlete. Track and field athletics in Fife has never been stronger and DSF is building a squad of wheelchair racing enthusiasts with Callum at the centre.

Photo: Coach Pamela, Callum and a supporting family member at a final training session at the Beveridge Park in Kirkcaldy.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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First Fife (DSF) Cross Country Championships

Disability Sport Fife (DSF) has circulated entry forms for the First Fife Cross Country Championships for athletes with a physical/sensory impairment or learning disability organised by the Fife Schools Athletic Association in conjunction with Disability Sport Fife. Fife’s leading distance and middle distance athletes Owen Miller, Derek Rae and Sam Fernando are expected to take part.

Beveridge Park, Kirkcaldy

Wednesday 27th May 2015

1.00pm - 2.00pm

Wednesday 20th May - closing date for entries

PROGRAMME

SCHOOL YEAR / MEMBER ORGANISATION

DISTANCE

Times

Primary

1K

13.00 hrs approx.

S1-S6 plus adults

1K

13.00 hrs approx

S1-S6 plus adults

2k

13.20 hrs approx

S1-S6 plus adults

3k

13.25 hrs approx

  

Notes for competitors and coaches:   
 

  • Boys/girls may run in the same race depending on numbers but will be judged separately.
  • There will be separate provision for school year groups in each race.
  • Athletes may collect their numbers and walk the course from 12.15 hrs onwards.
  • Medals will be presented to the 1st, 2nd& 3rd boy/girl in each school year race.
  • There will be races for Primary, S1, S2, S3, S4/5/6 pupils plus adults.
  • There will be no restriction on the number of athletes who may be entered from one member organisation.
  • All participants will receive a certificate.
  • There will be a team competition for schools (ASN). The first three athletes in each year group race will score points towards the team total.
  • Most importantly athletes may only be entered for events they have prepared for and are capable of completing.    

Course: The course is suitable for cross country shoes or short spikes and will be run entirely on grass.

Entry Fee: The entry fee will be £1.00 per competitor and cheques should be made payable to Disability Sport Fife. 

Significant others:

  • Participating organisations should nominate one adult who is prepared to assist with officiating duties if required.
  • Participating organisations should attend with a named qualified first aid person who will respond in the event of an emergency.

Presentations of medals:   2.00pm in Kirkcaldy Rugby Club

Photographs:   DSF will issue appropriate documentation for those wishing to take photographs of their own pupils. Any school that does not wish its pupils to appear in photos should indicate accordingly when entry form is returned to Norma.

 

For further details contact :

Norma Norma Buchanan,

Email norma.buchanan@fife.gov.uk

Tel. 03451 55 55 55 + Ext 44 49 89 

Administrator, Disability Sport Fife, Michael Woods Centre, Viewfield, Glenrothes, Fife KY6 2RD

> Click here to download an entry forms

 

Disability Sport Fife acknowledges the support received from Steve Doig and colleagues from Fife Schools Athletic Association with the organisation of this event.

 

 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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DSF Benefits from Hippo Parade

Disability Sport Fife is proud to have been involved with the 2014 Glenrothes Town Centre Hippo Parade and associated activities. Many thanks to all the agencies and individuals who contributed to the success of the project. 



DSF President Richard Brickley was presented with a cheque for £596 from Centre General Manager Robert Winter and staff representatives during a recent visit. The money will be used to sustain the DSF weekly sports sessions for children, young people and adults with disabilities held across Fife. The sessions are organised in conjunction with the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust and offer quality coach led sports opportunities to children, athletes and players of all levels of ability. 
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Unique Treble of Team Wins for Fife

Apart from winning the team title at the National Championships for physically and sensory impaired swimmers, the Fife swim squad achieved something very special in the history of Disability Sport Fife (DSF) and Scottish Disability Sport.

In May last year, Fife swimmers won the team title at the SDS Championships for swimmers with a learning disability. In September last the Fife athletics team won the team title at the SDS Senior Track and Field Championships in Perth. The 2015 Grangemouth result completed a unique treble of team victories. For the first time in DSF history all three Scottish team trophies will be in Fife at the same time.

The twelve strong Fife squad won 27 individual national titles plus the Open relay and finished runners up in the restricted relay. Team Fife finished with 141 points, 17 ahead of defending champions West of Scotland. The Lothian team finished third, ahead of Tayside, Borders, Highland and Forth Valley.

Lucy Walkup and Fraser Wilson returned from Stirling and Aberdeen Universities respectively to compete for Team Fife and newcomers Richard Osborn and Kirsty Brunton made an impressive start to their career with Team Fife by winning 6 titles. Mary Wilson, Craig Smith, John Hick, Ollie Carter, Katie Muir, Darrel Drury, Dawn Aitken and Michelle Hill completed the Fife line up.

GB Deaf international Lucy Walkup from Stirling SC was in fine form with five individual wins plus relay gold. Mary Wilson in only her second outing for Fife won four titles. Kirsty Brunton, Richard Osborn, Ollie Carter,Katie Muir, John Hick and Craig Smith ended their championships with three medals or more to their name and a significant number of team points towards the team trophy. All other members of the Fife team collected winner or runners up medals;

DSF targeted this team competition and all the hard work by the swimmers in the lead up to the event most certainly paid off. Cara Smyth and Steven McCormick swam as junior guests at the event and similarly made a considerable impression with a series of personal best swims.

 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife Athlete Trains with the Best

Scottish Athletics has launched a new National Academy geared to offer the country’s best young athletes a better chance of future success. Medals at the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games in 2018 and greater representation within GB are among the goals for the project launched by the national governing body for track and field.

32 athletes and their coaches have been ‘inducted’ to date. The programme has developed significantly from the pilot Youth Academy established two years ago to focus on Scotland’s leading 16 and 17 year-olds. The list now features Para athletes Lewis Clow and Jason MacLean, who represented Scotland at the Commonwealth Games at Hampden last year, as well as 18-year-old  Euan Gillham and Emma Canning, who competed for GB at U20 level this season.

Scotland’s leading middle distance runner with a learning disability, Owen Miller from Dunfermline Track and Field and Disability Sport Fife, is also included in the Academy line up. This will be Owen’s second year at the national camp at Grangemouth and once again he has benefitted enormously from the experience. This are exciting times for the Dunfermline athlete with the announcement that he will join coach Steve Doig of Fife AC for two sessions per week but at the same time retain his link with existing coach Gemma Nicol for the remainder of the week.

Rodger Harkins, who guided Lee McConnell’s illustrious career prior to his appointment as Director of Coaching with scottishathletics, is excited about the National Academy project which involved athletes and coaches receiving education, physio support and competition and training camp opportunities.

 ‘We are delighted to confirm that scottishathletics are setting up a National Academy to further help the development of potential elite athletes,’ said Rodger.

‘Over the past couple of years, the Youth Academy for 16 and 17-year-olds laid the foundation for this project. It has been a really successful programme – offering advice and support to hard-working young athletes, their parents and their coaches. The education this group has received has been, and will be, invaluable as they continue to progress in the sport.

‘Now we feel a broader National Academy enables us to identify others worthy of this kind of support: late developers; those who may have changed events; or indeed are new to the sport in their mid-teens.

‘We don’t want the right people to miss out on this kind of learning opportunity. So that’s why we are broadening the base while not indulging in any real reduction in the high performance standards we’ve sought thus far.

‘This approach is totally consistent with our Performance Foundation principles to help talented Scottish athletes develop; to ‘Perform When It Counts’; and, in the future, to merit recognition by UK Athletics.

‘From the first year group, brought in during 2013, the likes of  Euan Gillham and Emma Canning have won GB selection thus far at U20 level and that is great credit to them and their coaches. Others have appeared for Scotland or set age group records.

‘The goal of the National Academy is to educate and prepare people – that’s athletes and coaches – for that kind of progress and we’re looking towards greater Scottish involvement at events such as the World Youths, Commonwealth Youth Games, and Euro U20s and Euro 23s.’

The National Academy will be integrated into the scottishathletics performance pathway. The original project was launched in 2013 with the intention being to better support and direct young athletes, their coaches and parents as they progress towards senior status.

By widening the programme to consider performances from the summer 2014 season by older athletes, more individuals who are showing the potential to develop towards the outcomes and goals of the National Academy are now included.

Photo: Owen Miller is second from left in middle row.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife Paratriathlete Faces First Challenge

Stefan Hoggan from Auchtermuchty is an arm amputee swimmer who retired last year from high performance swimming to concentrate on Para Triathlon. The three discipline sport will be introduced to the Paralympic Games in Rio in 2016 and Stefan would dearly love to be considered for Team GB.

Stefan’s record as a high performance junior and senior swimmer is impressive but he disappointingly failed to gain selection for Team GB for London 2012 and Team Scotland for Glasgow 2014. Undaunted the young Disability Sport Fife swimmer retired from Carnegie Swimming Club and soon after accepted an invitation from British Triathlon to attend training camps in England and overseas. Mastering one discipline is challenging enough but taking on three challenging sports at the same time is not for the feint hearted. Soon after returning from the overseas camp, Stefan was invited by British Triathlon to train at Loughborough for three months as a funded high performance athlete.

Stefan has loved every minute of his triathlon training experience and so far his coaches are happy with his progress. Open water swimming is very different from competing in the pool and distance running was never until now a sport that excited Stefan. Cycling has always been an interest and training with British Triathlon has fulfilled more than one ambition. Stefan’s opening major competition challenge will be on 16th May when he competes in his first paratriathlon in Llanelli in Wales. All of Fife and Scotland are behind the ex Bell Baxter HS pupil.

 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Double Medal Win for Fife Boccia Player

 

Kieran Steer from Crossgates continues to excel as an international boccia player and on this occasion it was at the European Continental Cup in Sant Cugat, Barcelona. Team GB topped the medals table in the first international of the season in the build up to the Paralympic Games in Rio in 2016.

There were four Scots in the GB team of ten that won seven medals against the best European boccia players of the present time. Kieran upset the current singles rankings in the BC4 class by progressing through his section undefeated and lifting the gold medal. Kieran also teamed up with Stephen McGuire and Evie Edwards to win silver in the pairs event, losing narrowly to Slovakia in a tie break. 

These were the best results to date in a major international boccia ranking tournament by the young Disability Sport Fife member who was honoured recently at the West Fife Sports Council Awards evening. 

Team GB now heads to the World Open in Poland in June with increased confidence about the season ahead. Thereafter focus will be on the European team and pairs competition in Guildford on 25/26 July where a strong performance would secure direct GB qualification for the Paralympic Games in Rio. Kieran will play a key role in each of these competitions in his attempt to become the first Fife high performance boccia player to be selected for a Paralympic Games.

 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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British Para - Swimming International Meet

Disability Sport Fife Chairman Paul Noble has become an accomplished swimming announcer and his most recent appointment was at the Tollcross Pool in Glasgow for the British Para - Swimming International Meet. The format was multi-classification events with medals presented to swimmers with the highest number of points, closest to the world record for their class. There were A, B and C finals and youth medals were awarded to younger swimmers who had progressed into one of the finals. Disability Sport Fife had three of its performance swimmers in action in Glasgow and each swimmer turned in quality performances.
 

Craig Rodgie from the Edinburgh University Swim Squad did not have the best of meet starts with a disqualification for a false start in his first event. Not surprisingly the GB London Paralympian from Dalgety Bay, pulled himself together and achieved 'B' finals in his other events, 100m backstroke and 200m freestyle. Craig had a personal best time in the 100m backstroke of 1.04.45 (previous best of 1.05.11). This placed Craig top S14 swimmer in Great Britain, finishing ahead of all S14's in the A final. Craig missed qualification for the 2015 World Championships team by only 1.2 sec. Craig's 200m Freestyle time was only one second outside his best ever time which was set last year when qualifying for the Commonwealth Games.

Craig Smith from FINS is coached by Ian Lewis and competed in 50m,100m and 400m freestyle. The young Glenrothes HS teenager did not progress to any of the finals but swam very well. Craig recorded a personal best time for 100m (1:12.78) a was only 0.1 sec outside his best ever time for 50m.

Ollie Carter is coached by Mark Laing at Cupar and District Swimming Club and recorded personal best performances in all his freestyle swims, 50m, 100m & 400m.Ollie had a very impressive improvement of two seconds when winning his 50m freestyle individual heat. Ollie’s 100m improvement was 0.5 sec, and in the 400m his 5 second improvement resulted in progression to the C final where he claimed a youth silver medal. 

At the conclusion of the International Meet it was announced that Andrew Mullen from the West of Scotland and Scott Quin from Lothian have been selected for the 18 strong Team GB for the World Championships to be held in Glasgow between 13th and 19th July..

Photo: Craig Rodgie
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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2015 Fife Table Tennis Championships

Supported by the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust and Celebrating Fife the 2015 Fife Table Tennis Championships were held at the Michael Woods Sports and Leisure Centre in Glenrothes. The championships are organised by Disability Sport Fife and are part of the 41st Annual Fife Sports Festival that runs throughout March.

Players were divided into two divisions according to ability. Craig Donaldson from Kinghorn and Central Fife Community Support Services successfully defended his Division 1 Fife title but on this occasion his opponent in the final was John Hick from Glenrothes. John is Fife’s leading physically disabled badminton player and also an accomplished table tennis player. Craig won another Fife title following an undefeated run in qualification and two games to nil result in the final.

Michelle Wallace from Kirkcaldy and Central Fife CSS has been one of the leading Fife table tennis players for several years. Michelle progressed to the final with one win and a series of drawn matches to meet newcomer Jazmine McNeil from Rosyth whose qualification was by a similar route. The first two games were very close and scores were level at one game all. Michelle just edged ahead in the final game to win by the odd game in three to be crowned 2015 Division two champion.

Photo: Jazmine McNeil, Michelle Wallace, Craig Donaldson and John Hick
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife Swimmer Excels in Loughborough

The past few months have been a challenge for performance swimmer Lucy Walkup from Glenrothes. A move from Carnegie SC and John Szaranek to Stirling SC and Kerry Martin was not without its hiccups but Lucy always recognised and appreciated she was transferring from one outstanding coach to another. Lucy recently received recognition from Kirkcaldy and Central Fife Sports Council when she was voted disabled sports person of the year for the third time in succession.

Scottish Swimming managed the swimming transition process but like all other young people Lucy had to get used to the challenges of leaving home and school to becoming a Stirling University student and living on campus. Lucy has demonstrated in her first major GB swim meet that she is on track and preparing well for the World Deaf Swimming Championships later in the year in the USA.

The GB Deaf Championships are an important occasion to all leading deaf swimmers and invariably Lucy swims well and this year was no exception. She travelled to Loughborough feeling confident that she was in good shape and she did not disappoint.

 

 Lucy entered 50m and 100m breast and 50m Fly and returned with golds in both breaststroke events and silver in butterfly. The 100m breaststroke trophy is back in Scotland once again, the 7th consecutive year Lucy has been open breaststroke champion.

Disability Sport Fife is working with the Walkup family to secure financial support for Lucy for the Championships in the USA. High performance deaf sports people do not receive the equivalent levels of support as their Para sport colleagues and often it falls on families to secure appropriate funds. Lucy is grateful for the ongoing support she receives from Bankhead Robes and to the Scottish Disabled Sports Trust for a contribution towards the USA Championships. Once again the members of the CISWO in Glenrothes have responded to a request for assistance by arranging a fund raiser. Local Fife communities are renowned for their support of local Fife athletes.


Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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2015 Annual Sports Festival Final Event

The 2015 Fife Sports Festival ended as always with the very popular tug of war competition at the Michael Woods Sports and Leisure centre in Glenrothes. This was the 41st Festival held in Fife and entries for all events were up on previous years. The Festival is supported by the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust and Celebrating Fife and some of the sports competitions offer Disability Sport Fife members qualification for sport specific Scottish Championships.

 65 athletes and 30 support staff competed in the 2015 tug of war competition. Two divisions were held based on athlete ability with leadership, organisation and motivation provided by support staff. As always the atmosphere in the games hall at the Sports Centre was electric.

Photo; Some of the participants and staff who took part in the 205 DSF Tug of war championships
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Kirkcaldy and Central Fife Awards Evening

Lucy Walkup from Glenrothes and Stirling Swimming Club won the Kirkcaldy and Central Fife Disabled Sports Person of the Year Award at the Annual Awards Evening held at Fife College, Kirkcaldy. This award is sponsored by PMP Optometrists and this is the third year in succession that Lucy has won the award. Lucy was nominated by Disability Sport Fife for her outstanding performances throughout 2014 including memorable swims in Russia. Lucy has moved from Carnegie to Stirling SC and new coach Kerry Martin. The transition from school to university is always a challenge but Lucy has set her sights on achieving a podium finish in Texas later in the year when she swims for Team GB at the World Deaf Swimming Championships. (Photo Lucy Walkup)

Derek Rae from Kirkcaldy won the Gary Innes Memorial Award which on the night was once again presented by Gary’s mother. Gary was an active member of the Sports Council throughout his short life and a strong advocate for disability sport. The award in his name recognises an athlete of excellence who has been recognised for his past and present achievements and performance potential. Derek won his first GB cap this year and will run in the 2015 IPC World Marathon Championships at the end of April which are part of the 2015 London Marathon. Derek is the only GB ambulant entry in the event and his selection is reward for an outstanding 2014 where the highlight was a 2.44.43 run in the 2014 London marathon and a succession of other fine performances at home and overseas. (Photo Derek and Mrs Innes)

The first runner up in the Disabled Sports Person of the year category was B7 Singles world Bowls Champion Martin Hunter from Burntisland. Decisions are made on 2014 performances and Martin’s world title win was not considered, only his DSF, SDS and Burntisland BC performances which were outstanding. Martin attended the evening with his proud wife and father who have played such a major role in his progress as a performance bowler and now world champion. (Photo Martin centre)
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife 7s League Finishes on a High

Series 3 of the 2015 7s League organised by Disability Sport Fife (DSF) and supported by the Scottish FA and Kirkcaldy High School was held on Wednesday 25 March.  Players from Balwearie HS, Woodmill HS, Lochgelly HS, Bell Baxter HS, Madras College and Glenrothes HS participated in this now well established annual event for players with additional support needs.  Players compete in either the tournament for S1/S2 junior pupils or the S3-S6 tournament for senior pupils.  This is fifth staging of the event and Balwearie HS and Lochgelly HS won the senior tournament twice in previous years.



Scottish FA referees Alastair Watt and Andrew McGachan were in charge of officiating and coach Dave Costello had the responsibility of overseeing play and identifying the leading players in each of the two tournaments. 

Jack Howard of Glenrothes HS was voted the junior player of the tournament and the leading junior goal scorer was Robert Sellstrom from Balwearie HS with 21 goals. Balwearie HS retained the S1/S2 title but lost out in the Series 3 competition overall to Glenrothes HS by 4 points to 5.  This was the first win by Glenrothes HS in any of the 7s League sections. It was a remarkable outcome because Glenrothes HS had only contested Series 2 and 3 missing out on Series 1.  Over the three Series, Balwearie HS finished with 19 points, Glenrothes HS with 9 points and Lochgelly HS with 8 points.

In the senior tournament for S3-S6 pupils Balwearie HS retained their title and in the process recorded wins in all three Series for a total of 24 points.  Runners-up were the players from Woodmill HS with 16 points, having finished second in Series 2 and 3 and  third in Series 1.  Lochgelly HS and the combined Bell Baxter HS/Madras College team finished with 10 points each over the three Series to share third place.  Liam Downie from Balwearie HS was voted senior player of the tournament and top goal scorer with a total of 13 goals.  The leading goal keeper of the tournament was identified as Callum Donaldson.

By finishing winners and runners-up in the senior event Balwearie HS and Woodmill HS will be invited to represent Fife at the Scottish 7s League final organised by the Scottish FA at Ravenscraig on Wednesday 20 May.  Once again the tournament was judged an outstanding success thanks to the enormous support provided by Kirkcaldy HS in allowing use of their excellent football facilities.

Photo: Balwearie HS winners Woodmill HS Runners up
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Easter Holidays

Norma has prepared the attached schedule detailing the arrangements for the Easter Holidays. Please try to support those sessions that are going ahead because the coaches have made themselves available to ensure there are as few interruptions to our annual programme as possible.

For those who are planning to take a break have a wonderful Easter. Next term we shall turn our attention to track and field and bowls in particular with lots going on. DSF is planning to hold the first Fife cross country championships in May. Watch out for details.

Click here to access Easter timetable.

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Another Sad Loss to the Movement

Not long after learning about the death of Jimmy Binnie, DSF has been informed that another West Fife athlete has passed away.

Peter Wood was one of the quiet men of Disability Sport Fife but an enthusiastic and talented sportsman. Peter represented Fife in several sports but it was in bowls in particular he made his mark. In both carpet and lawn bowls Peter was a fine player and like many of the West Fife bowlers he represented Fife at the Special Olympics Summer Games.

Peter was well liked by athletes and support staff. He was rarely without a smile and one of the first participants at the end of an event to say thank you. Peter always appeared content with life and had a laid back approach to sport and life in general. There are many who knew Peter and benefitted from his company will be saddened by this news. Another DSF member who made a significant contribution to our development has passed away. May he rest in peace.

Photo: Peter Wood front row left and Jimmy Binnie front row right.

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Three Titles for Fife athletes

Fife athletes won three titles, four silver medals and five bronze medals at the 2015 Scottish Cross country Championships organised by Scottish Athletics and Scottish Disability Sport at Bellahouston Sports Centre. Not all the athletes who had taken part in the four races of the East Series were able to travel to Glasgow but those who did produced top quality performances.

Owen Miller from Dunfermline Track and Field is Scotland’s leading middle distance athlete with a learning disability but he is also an accomplished cross country runner. Owen produced excellent runs for his club over the winter and jumped at the chance to turn out for the Disability Sport Fife team. In Glasgow Owen produced the best performance of the day in the men’s open with a time of 10.51 for 3K.

 

Sam Fernando from Bell Baxter HS and Fife AC is following the same pathway as Owen when he was a pupil at Woodmill HS. Sam is an excellent cross country runner but like Owen he may have to consider running shorter track distances to access top quality competitions. Sam has recently secured an international classification of T20 and plans to follow in the footsteps of Owen who has competed for Great Britain in INAS Championships over 800 and 1500 metres. Sam won the junior boys open in Glasgow over 3K in a time of 12.11. Dean Bruce from Bell Baxter HS won the boys S3-S4 1K in a time of 4.16 and Lewis Moyes rounded off an excellent day for Bell Baxter by winning bronze in S1-S2 1K.

Four Balwearie HS pupils won silver medals at the national championships. 

Dionne Mackie S5-S6 1K, Brandon Eason S3-S4 1K, Alex Evans S1-S2 2K and Ryan Dunwoodie S5-S6 2K. Lochgelly HS pupils Marie Wilson S5-S6 1K and Leah Fleming S3-S4 1K won bronze medals along with Kerry Katlowski S1-S2 1K of Bell Baxter HS and Isaac Fraser S5-S6 1K from Balwearie HS.  

Another set of successes for Fife athletes at the national cross country championships. Attention now turns to the track and field season with the Fife Championships scheduled for Wednesday June 10th at Pitreavie and the Scottish junior championships the week before.

 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Great Entry for Fife Badminton Championships

International badminton player Russell Hogg from Dunfermline had a major influence on the development of disability badminton in Fife.   Sadly Russell passed away two years ago but part of his legacy is undoubtedly the quality and quantity of badminton projects the are now part of the Disability Sport Fife (DSF) programme.  Russell inspired DSF to take on badminton as a priority sport and the annual Fife Badminton Championships have grown from an entry of around 15 in year one to an entry of 54 in 2015.  The Championships are held at the Kirkcaldy Leisure Centre and supported by the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust and Celebrating Fife. 

12 divisions were contested based on gender, age and ability and participants from schools, Community Support Services and clubs throughout Fife enjoyed the Championships immensely.  Umpiring duties were the responsibility of Sports Leaders from Kirkcaldy High School ably mentored by DSF Coach and Active Schools Co-ordinator Alex Bird and Jane Russell from Badminton Scotland.


Photos: Lloyd Simpson, Men’s open champion with Bill Hogg

The mens Division 1 Championship for Fife’s leading players was won by Lloyd Simpson (DSF) for the second time in three years.  Lloyd defeated Fife’s only physically impaired representative at the recent National Championships, John Hick from Glenrothes, in the final.  Adam Faulds and Alex Fisher are enthusiastic members of the DSF weekly badminton session at the Michael Woods Sports and Leisure Centre and they contested the Division 2 final with Alex winning the title for the first time.  Wayne Sammut from West Five Community Support Services defeated Graham Law from Glenrothes in the mens Division 3 final and James Murphy from Scottish Autism finished runner-up in the mens Division 4 event with Felix Taylor from Kilmaron School in Cupar taking the title.

Suroop Sually (Balwearie HS) successfully defended the boys open title and Aiden Fleming (Lochgelly HS) finished runner-up.  The Division 2 boys final was an all Balwearie HS affair with Alex Evans defeating Brandon Eason.  The Division 3 boys competition ended in success for Stuart Taylor (Balwearie HS) who defeated Ben Johnston (Glenrothes HS) in the final.  The Division 4 boys competition ended in a win for Craig Wight (Glenrothes HS) and Craig McIntyre (Balwearie HS) won the silver medal.  Lochgelly HS had success in the Division 5 boys event where Ryan Harley defeated Cameron Healey (Balwearie HS). 


Photo: Participants and officials at 2015 Fife Championships. 

The women and girls open competition resulted in Pauline Bryson (Lochgelly High School Sports Club) successfully defending her Fife title in an extremely close final against newcomer Jazmine McNeil (Inverkeithing HS).  The Division 2 girls and womens competition finished with a closely contested final where Caitlin De Soyza (Balwearie HS) lost out to her team-mate Jennifer Paton by the narrowest of margins.  Division 3 was an all Lochgelly HS final with Louise Harley ending up a convincing winner and Michelle Harley finishing runner-up.

DSF was proud to welcome Bill Hogg, brother of the late Russell Hogg, to the Championships to present medals to successful participants.  Bill is a Trustee of the Russell Hogg Trust and is employed by YONEX, the company that has been extremely supportive of the DSF badminton project entitled “Supported Learning with Equipment” funded by the Big Lottery.  The late Russell Hogg would have been delighted with the progress made by DSF in disability badminton development.
            

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife Hosts South Lanarkshire Leisure staff

Disability Sport Fife was delighted to host a delegation of officers from South Lanarkshire Leisure to discuss the existing Fife programme for children, athletes and players with a disability and the development of a new programme within South Lanarkshire.

Active Schools coordinator Michelle Turnbull organised the project on behalf of the South Lanarkshire team and Richard Brickley, President of Disability Sport Fife led the four hour session on behalf of DSF. Staff from Active Schools, Sports Development, ASN and Development Services made the journey from the west to Fife to discuss and debate issues of mutual interest. Identification and engagement, session planning, events, athlete/player pathways, coach development and deployment, volunteer development, finance, strategic planning, classification, marketing and publicity, risk assessments, CPD, equipment were just some of the many areas covered. Participants took advantage of the visit to the DSF Headquarters to view the facilities of the 18 month old leisure centre and observe four of the weekly DSF sessions that are held on a Monday evening.

The visit has created a strong link between Fife and South Lanarkshire and a promise that DSF arrange a reciprocal visit to the west to observe the exciting new programmes planned for South Lanarkshire when they are up and running.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife athlete on Target for London 2015

With only five weeks to go to the 2015 London Marathon, Derek Rae from Anster Haddies has turned in an outstanding performance in the Alloa Half Marathon of 1:13.35. Derek’s 2014 time was 1:14.55 and considering the injury challenges he has had over the winter, both coach and athlete are delighted with the performance. Derek was involved in an exciting sprint finish for joint 11th place.

Derek has been selected for the first time to represent Great Britain in the T46 IPC World Marathon Championships which are an integral part of the 2015 London Marathon.

Derek was destined to run internationally following steady improvement over the past couple of years and a personal best run of 2:44.43 in the 2014 London Marathon. Under the watchful eye of coach Ron Morrison from Fife AC, Derek continues to produce quality runs in all the designated events leading up to London 2015.

 

 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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World Champion wins St Andrews Kilrymont Award

For the past 10 years the Rotary Club of St Andrews Kilrymont has awarded the Rotary Quaich and a sports bursary to a Fife performance athlete identified by Disability Sport Fife. The previous two winners have been Brad Stewart (archery) and Derek Rae (athletics) who have gone on to excel in their chosen sport at the very highest level.

The 2015 recipient is Martin Hunter from Burntisland Bowling Club who as a member of Team Scotland won the B7 singles world title at the 2015 IBD World Bowls Championships in Wellington, New Zealand. Martin attended a March Rotary Club weekly meeting with Disability Sport Fife President Richard Brickley to receive his award from Club President Gordon McKenzie and bursary from Rotarian George Donaldson MBE.

Martin competed in mixed pairs and singles in arguably the most competitive class at the world championships. Progress in mixed pairs had been unspectacular and qualification in singles challenging and at times brilliant. Martin put himself under pressure in singles by losing early matches by the narrowest of margins but completed his qualifying campaign with some spectacular victories against the odds. Martin saved his best until the semi – final and final where he played his best bowls against an outstanding Korean and then Australian opponent. Martin attributes his victory against the undefeated Korean player to wise tactical advice from Scottish coach Celia Smith from Buckhaven.

The Scottish campaign was coordinated by Scottish Disability Sport and Team Scotland won five gold medals and two silver medals. As well as Martin, Maria Spencer from Dunfermline won singles gold and mixed pairs silver and Michael Simpson Auchtermuchty also mixed pairs silver.

Photo: George Donaldson, Richard Brickley, Martin Hunter and Gordon McKenzie.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Kilmaron Receive Badminton Bag

Kilmaron School in Cupar is the latest member organisation to receive a badminton bag from Disability Sport Fife to assist with the promotion of the sport of badminton. Badminton is a DSF priority sport for DSF and now that there will be Para badminton in the Paralympic Games in 2020 in Japan there is added significance. DSF is experiencing an ever growing interest in the sport. 51 players are registered for the 2015 Fife Championships to be held at Kirkcaldy Leisure Centre on Wednesday 18th March as part of the annual DSF Sports Festival supported by the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust.

The late Russell Hogg from Dunfermline is the inspiration behind the boom in disability badminton in Fife. Russell was an international sporting legend in the sport and while an officer with Badminton Scotland and then Scottish Disability Sport he inspired DSF to adopt badminton as a priority sport. DSF has been fortunate to engage Alex Bird from Active Schools as a coach and receive support from Jayne Russell from Badminton Scotland with the promotion of badminton workshops supported by the Big Lottery. Participating DSF member organisations receive training from Jayne plus adapted Yonex equipment to help promote the sport within schools, community organisations etc.

Norma Buchanan (left), DSF Administrator, presented a badminton bag to Jackie Moran (Right) from Kilmaron School following the DSF football champinships. In the centre is Fraser Arnott from Kilmaron who will compete in the forthcoming DSF Badminton Championships.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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2015 Fife Football and Unihoc Championships

18 football and unihoc teams competed in the 2015 Indoor 5-A-Side Football and Unihoc Championships held at the Michael Woods Sports and Leisure Centre in Glenrothes.  The Championships were the third sports event of the 2015 Sports Festival supported by the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust and Celebrating Fife.  Junior and senior players of all levels of ability contested eight divisions based on player ability, age and gender.

There were two divisions for unihoc.  The second division concentrated on players with severe and complex needs and they played out a round robin format.  The division 1 unihoc competition for senior women involved the players from Central Fife Community Support Services (CSS) and East Fife CSS.  East Fife CSS women retained the Fife championship title and won the Engravia Centre trophy for the third year in succession and the 10th time since 2000.

The junior boys football competition incorporated teams from Balwearie High School Department for pupils with additional support needs (DAS) and Lochgelly High School DAS.  Balwearie HS entered A and B teams of comparable ability and all three teams won one game each in the division qualifiers.  On points and goals for and against the final involved Balwearie A and B with Balwearie HS A team winning by 4 goals to 2.

The division 4 football competition was populated by the players from Scottish Autism (Real) and Scottish Autism (Inter). This division included some of the most severely disabled players of the tournament and confirmed that the Disability Sport Fife football programme promotes the principles of “football for all”.  Players who required support on the field of play were assisted by Scottish Autism staff. Following a three match head-to-head, Scottish Autism (Real) ran out worthy winners by 4 points to 2.

In division 3 there were teams from East Fife CSS (1) and (2) and Central/West/East United.  Again teams were involved in a three team round robin qualifier with East Fife CSS progressing to the final undefeated and Central/West/East United winning one game and losing the second.  In the final East Fife CSS ran out very worthy winners by 6 goals to 0 to retain the division 3 title.



The division 2 football competition involved Glenrothes Strollers (3), West Fife CSS (2) and Central Fife CSS.  The Strollers progressed to the final undefeated with Central Fife CSS winning one match but losing out to the Strollers by 2 goals to 0.  The final was a closer encounter but Strollers (3) ended Division 2 winners by 2 goals to 1.

In the final Division for the leading teams entered for the tournament, Glenrothes Strollers (1) and (2) competed against West Fife CSS (1).  The West Fife team are past winners of this Division but the emergence of Glenrothes Strollers as a community club, promoting inclusive football, changed the dynamic totally of the 2015 tournament.  Glenrothes Strollers (1) qualified for the final undefeated and West Fife CSS and Glenrothes Strollers (2) played out a no score draw in the important qualifying tie.  On goals for and against it was the Strollers second team that progressed to the final for a match against the Division 1 favourites.  There was never much between the teams but Strollers (1) deservedly won the Fife Regional Council Trophy to be crowned champions for the first time.

The involvement of the Glenrothes Strollers Club in the 2015 Disability Sport Fife (DSF) 5 a side championships Football Championships has greatly enhanced the quality of the event as well as the quantity of players participating.  Inclusive community football clubs are undoubtedly the way forward for the development of disability football in Fife. The  Glenrothes Strollers club is a perfect example of what can be achieved with commitment, appropriate personnel and partnership working.  DSF is proud to be a partner of Glenrothes Strollers, Scottish Autism, Fife schools, Scottish FA and Fife CSSs and the 2015 football and unihoc championships are the outcome of cooperative planning and preparation.

Scottish FA referee, Neil Martin, once again refereed all the ties at the Fife Championships and Aileen Penny and Helima Mutch looked after the umpiring of the unihoc competition.  Supporting the DSF football competition were Scottish FA Regional Development Officers Davie Honeyman and Lee Bailey who are totally committed to the development of inclusive football and offer excellent support to the DSF football programme.  The attraction of the Fife disability football programme is that it offers opportunities for players of all ages and abilities with a disability.

 

Photo: Glenrothes Strollers 1 and 3 - winners of Division 1 and 2 football
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Kieran Scoops West Fife Award

Disability Sport Fife (DSF) enjoys a very healthy relationship with all three Fife Sports Councils. Each Sports Council presents disability sports awards at their Awards Evenings and each year DSF nominates at least four performance athletes from the Sports Council area for this very prestigious award.

Kirkcaldy and District Sports Council Awards evening is scheduled for Thursday 26th March and East Fife Sports Council is scheduled for Wednesday May 6th

The competition will be fierce for the disability sports award in each of these areas and whoever is successful will be a worthy recipient.

Dunfermline and West Fife have already held their Awards evening and celebrated sporting excellence across a wide range of sports. Kieran Steer is a member of the GB Boccia Team preparing for Rio and he was a very worthy winner of the Sports Council disability sports performance award. Kieran is Fife’s most successful boccia player and we all hope he achieves his goal of representing Team GB in Brazil. In the meantime Kieran is the best in the west.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fergus is Fife Top Marksman

Fergus Wilson from West Fife Community Support Services (WFCSS) was the top archer in the second event of the 2015 Fife Sports Festival organised by Disability Sport Fife during the month of March. Cluny Clays was the venue for the second year for the Fife Championships for archers with a learning disability.

Fergus recorded a score of 122 with 18 arrows at 15 metres in the Division 1 competition, well ahead of his team mate Wayne Sammut with 89 and Craig Houston from East Fife CSS with 87. Wayne and Craig finished in second and third place respectively. The women’s open brought Andrea Spry and Jemma Hancock together in a head to head shoot out with 12 arrows. The two East Fife CSS archers had a close competition with Andrea winning the title with 57 points, two ahead of Jemma.

The mixed Intermediate Division had six participants who shot 12 arrows at 10 metres. Aaron Kean from West Fife CSS won the division with 50 points and Lauren Jack (WFCSS) and Tristan Rankine (WFCSS) finished second and third respectively with 32 and 22 points. The Intermediate results rounded off an excellent evening for the West Fife archery squad.

GB International Para archer David Cowieson from Dairsie ran the competition on behalf of DSF with support from Gordon Easton and Carl Paddon. DSF is indebted for the support it receives from the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust and Celebrating Fife with the staging of the four week Sports Festival.

Photo: Fergus Wilson
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Enormous Fife Interest in London 2015

Sunday 26th April is an enormously significant date in the history of Disability Sport Fife. Derek Rae becomes the first physically disabled athlete from Fife and Scotland to compete for Great Britain in a major international marathon and the occasion is the 2015 IPC World Marathon Championships. The World Championships are part of the televised London Marathon. Derek competes in the T46 class, is a member of Anster Haddies and is coached by Ron Morrison from Fife AC at St Andrews.

On the same day, a young wheelchair athlete called Callum Sloan from Dunfermline will compete over 3 miles in his first mini marathon. Callum is coached by DSF athletics coach Pamela Robson at Pitreavie and recently he had a rare outing on the paths of the Beveridge Park in Kirkcaldy in preparation for London.

Callum was a member of the very successful Fife Sportshall team that recently finished second, by only 5 points, in the national championships in Grangemouth.

In addition to the challenges of competing in his first London mini marathon, Callum has decided to try and raise some money for Disability Sport Fife through sponsorship. DSF is thrilled that one of our most promising junior athletes is prepared to take on such a significant athletics challenge and at the same time assist DSF to help other participants with a disability to enjoy sports. Interested parties can support Callum through the DSF My Donate site where a specific page has been set up. https://mydonate.bt.com/fundraisers/gaylesloan2

 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife Athletes in Top Form at Sportshall

The 2015 Sportshall run, jump and throws competition organised by Scottish Disability Sport and Scottish Athletics was held at Grangemouth Sport Centre. Disability Sport Fife fielded two teams this year for the first time because of increased interest in disability athletics across Fife. Between 50 and 60 athletes with a physical, sensory or learning disability attend DSF weekly sessions and many of the junior members have prepared over the winter for the Sportshall event.

Fife won the national team title in 2014 for the first time and hopes were high for a defence of the title in 2015. Only five points separated the leading two teams after a full day of activities and the Fife athletes had to settle this year for a brilliant runners up spot. The Fife B team finished in 7th place with a team of 7 athletes, three short of the maximum. Team managers Pamela Robson (Balwearie HS), Fiona Stewart (Bell Baxter HS) and Brian Sim (Lochgelly HS) were extremely complimentary about the attitude and commitment of all the young Fife athletes.

Fife Team: Fraser Wilson (Lochgelly HS),Marie Wilson (Lochgelly HS),Alex Evans (Balwearie HS),Dylan Fotheringham (Balwearie HS),Liam Downie (Balwearie HS),Robbie Simpson (Glenrothes),Steven McCormick(Viewforth HS ),Callum Sloan(McLean Primary),Cameron Adam(Canmore Primary,)Abbie Steggles(Dunfermline HS), Dean Bruce (Bell Baxter HS), Sam Fernando (Bell Baxter HS),ShakeelUl-haq (Lochgelly HS) Louise Harley (Lochgelly HS),Gary Fraser (Lochgelly HS) Stuart Taylor (Balwearie HS), Brandon Eason (Balwearie HS),Kieran McDonnell (Balwearie HS), Lewis Moyes (Bell Baxter HS)



Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Stefan has Switched to Para Triathlon

Stefan Hoggan from Auchtermuchty enjoyed a very successful career as a performance swimmer. Since learning to swim at the Fife Sports Institute as a Primary pupil he has represented Fife and Scotland in Scottish and British Championships with considerable distinction as both a junior and senior.

Stefan has been a wonderful Disability Sport Fife ambassador but sadly he missed out on selection for the Paralympic Games in London in 2012 and then the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow in 2015. These disappointments persuaded Stefan to retire from competitive performance swimming. British Swimming however passed his name to British Triathlon as a potential Para triathlete for Rio and he jumped at the chance of attending trials in England.

Stefan initially travelled to Loughborough for two days of trials. Para triathlon will be introduced to the Paralympic Games in Rio in 2016 and competitors swim 750metres, cycle 20Kms and then run 5K. Stefan’s initial times were 10.14 for the swim, 38.35 on his bike and 21.08 for the run. These times persuaded British Triathlon staff that Stefan had potential and he was invited to take part in a six week training programme that involved a warm weather camp in Lanzarote in February.

With the camp successfully behind him, Stefan appreciated his performances were starting to improve across all disciplines. He realises he had so much to learn about open water swimming, cycling and running but his ambition of becoming a Paralympian is driving him on. Stefan then received the news he was hoping for. GB Para triathlon invited him to move to Loughborough for three months initially of funded training full time. His employers granted him a three month sabbatical and Stefan has settled into intensive training in one of the leading performance venues in the world with some of the best coaches in the world.

Stefan is working very hard in his new sport and he is happy with his training and performance improvements to date. Stefan competes in one of the most competitive Para triathlon classes and he is no doubt how difficult it will be to retain his place in the GB squad. Everything is going well for the moment and everybody involved in disability sport in Fife wishes him well for the remainder of his training period and hopefully in the run up to Rio in 2016.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Wheelchair Curling Success

Disability Sport Fife performance athletes Graham McIntyre (Leven) and Brad Stewart (Ladybank) excel in the sports of rowing and archery. Each athlete however expressed an interest in trying wheelchair curling and DSF President Richard Brickley arranged with his friend of many years, Michael McCreadie, for coaching sessions in Stirling and Kinross. Former GB skip and multi medallist McCreadie not only arranged for coaching but involvement in the 2015 Scottish Wheelchair Championships at the Peak in Stirling. Coaching sessions also involved input from current GB and Scotland skip, Aileen Neilson.

Graham and Brad thoroughly enjoyed teaming up with Michael, Aileen and Alison Hopkins for the three day national championships. Not only did the Fife players enjoy the experience immensely but they finished second in their qualifying pool and secured a place in the semi finals. They lost the tie for a place in the final but won the bronze medal play off match in their first ever competitive curling competition. Their success was due to the quality of coaching they received from Michael and Aileen in the run up to the championships and the support they received throughout the tournament. Undoubtedly they will be back for more of the same.

Photo: Alison Hopkins, Michael McCreadie, Graham McIntyre, Brad Stewart and Aileen Neilson
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Team Scotland Call Up for Craig

Craig Smith from FINS has recently been informed that he has been selected for the Scottish Disability Sport swimming team for the CP-ISRA World Games in Nottingham from 6th to 16th August 2015. The young Disability Sport Fife member is the latest in a long line of talented Fife athletes and players with cerebral palsy who have progressed from the major international event for performance athletes with cerebral palsy to involvement in a Paralympic Games as members of Team GB. The World Games are an international multi sport event.

Photo: Craig Smith (right) receiving an award from DSF Chairman Paul Noble at the 2014 DSF Awards  Evening.

Craig is coached at FINS by Ian Lewis and like a significant number of young sportsmen and women he was brought to the attention of Disability Sport Fife by the Glenrothes NHS Fife paediatric physiotherapy team headed by Joyce Cummings. Craig then pursued a learn to swim programme supported by the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust before attending weekly DSF coach led swimming sessions. FINS was his mainstream swimming club of choice and from there he has progressed into the national squad and represented Team Scotland at the British junior and senior championships with significant success. Craig’s ambition is to follow in the footsteps of other successful Fife performance swimmers and represent great Britain one day.


Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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41st Fife Swimming Championships

The Fife Swimming Championships are the longest running event organised by Disability Sport Fife (DSF).  The Championships incorporate the Brodie Gala for senior swimmers who access the three Fife Community Support Services (CSSs).  The Sonia Kane Memorial Relay Trophy is presented to the winning CSS relay team.  The Fife Swimming Championships traditionally launch the annual Fife Sports Festival which runs over four weeks and involves athletes of all levels of ability with a physical, sensory or learning disability in swimming, football, archery, boccia, unihoc, badminton, table tennis, tug-o-war, basketball, netball etc.  The annual Sports Festival and specifically the month of March is the most popular period in the year for the majority of DSF members.

This year DSF introduced several swimmers with performance potential to their first Fife Championships and there were more pupils with additional support needs than in previous years from Balwearie HS, Glenrothes HS, Bell Baxter HS and Lochgelly HS.  Two of Fife’s most successful swimmers, Craig Rodgie and Lucy Walkup, are on duty for Scottish Swimming in Ireland and were unable to take part. 

Lara Ferguson is a DSF ambassador, Paralympian and member of Carnegie Masters and once again she supported the championships as a performance swimmer and medal presenter. In 2014 Fife senior swimmers with a learning disability won the Kintore trophy at the National Championships for swimmers with a learning disability and many of the swimmers involved in that event competed in the 2015 Fife Championships.

West Fife CSS convincingly retained the AH Brodie Cup and the Sonia Kane Memorial Trophy relay title. Craig Donaldson from Central Fife CS won the men’s Trophy race and Nikki Baxter from West Fife CSS the women’s Trophy race. Balwearie HS won the junior relay and the DSF select team the Inter clubs relay title. Ollie Carter from Cupar and District Swimming Club was the leading physically disabled swimmer at the championships with four titles and an impressive leg of the Inter clubs relay. Briony Clark and Paul Coultard who are coached at the DSF weekly sessions were the leading swimmers with a learning disability and they will go forward with many others to represent Fife at the national championships organised by Scottish Disability Sport in Glasgow next month.

Junior swimmers with a physical impairment such as Cara Smyth (Incas),Kerys Ballard (Carnegie SC), Cameron Hemphill (Cupar DSC), Ruairidh Dumper (Carnegie SC), Steven McCormick (FINS), Craig Smith (FINS) and Logan Harley from Glenrothes caught the eye. Daniel Henderson (Glenrothes HS), Arran Howe (Bell Baxter HS), Jennifer Paton (Balwearie HS) and Dean Bruce (Bell Baxter HS) were some of the swimmers who excelled in the events for pupils with additional support needs. Physically disabled senior swimmers Kirsty Brunton (Dalgety Bay) and Richard Osborn (Cowdenbeath) appeared in their first Fife championships and demonstrated they had real performance potential in disability swimming.

DSF is indebted to local Scottish Swimming officials Fiona Cunningham, Jim Drummond and Colin Wilson who turn out year after year to support the galas that are part of the annual Fife programme.  DSF also acknowledges support received for the second year from Sports Leaders from Kirkcaldy High School who this year will be involved in three Fife major DSF events as volunteer officials.  DSF also acknowledges the invaluable input from poolside volunteers and support staff. DSF is indebted to the Fife Sports & Leisure Trust and Celebrating Fife for continued support of the Disability Sport Fife events programme.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Two World Titles for Fife Bowlers

Martin Hunter from Burntisland has rounded off an amazing year by winning the men’s B7 singles title at the IBD World Bowls Championships in New Zealand. The Disability Sport Fife reigning open physically disabled champion enjoyed incredible success last year in his own Burntisland Bowling Club individual, pairs and triples competitions and consistently turned in quality performances in national squad training organised by Scottish Disability Sport. Martin just missed out on selection for the Scottish Para Bowls team for the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow but that disappointment made him even more determined to make the Scottish team for New Zealand and then turn in a world class performance.

Initially results did not go all that well during qualification for the past Scottish Disability Sport national champion. Marginal losses to Kiwi bowler Bruce Wakefield by 20-21 and then to Douglas Lambert of Australia by 18-21 suggested qualification would be a struggle. Wins in all his other ties resulted in a runners up position in Pool B and a semi final match against Pool A winner, the brilliant Yong Hwa-No from Korea, winner of Pool A. Martin was in outstanding form in this game and he won the tie by the convincing score of 21-9 and earned himself a place in the final against Barry Christie from Australia. Having reached this stage of the competition there was only going to be one winner. 21-16 was the final score and Fife and Scotland had yet another 2015 singles world champion and deservedly so.

Maria Spencer from Dunfermline had yet another outstanding IBD World Championships. Four years ago she won a singles title in South Africa and this year she went one better by retaining her singles title and partnering her fellow 2015 Scottish world champion Harry Harris to a pairs silver medal. Maria is confirmed as one of the leading visually impaired bowlers in the world and a double singles world champion in successive World Championships. Throughout her campaign Maria would be the first to admit that she owes an enormous amount to her Director and coach, Sarah Jane Ewing from west Fife who was at her side all the way.

Four years ago in South Africa Michael Simpson from Auchtermuchty was a silver medal winner in men’s B7 pairs with his Commonwealth Games partner. This year he partnered Rosemary Lenton to another brilliant silver medal win but this time in B7 mixed pairs. Successive silvers in the World Championships demonstrates the excellence of the Strathmiglo Bowling Club member and the consistency of his play. Michael just like Martin enjoyed an excellent 2014 championships season in his own bowling club in Strathmiglo.

Two gold medals and two silver medals were won by Fife bowlers at the IBD World Championships in New Zealand. The overall Scottish total was five gold medals and two silver medals and another outstanding campaign in the major world championships in disability bowls. The Team Scotland performance is a tribute to Head Coach Bob Dick from Fife and his support team. Within that support team were Celia Smith, Sarah Jane Ewing and Eric McMillan form Fife.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife 7s Football League Series 2

This is the fifth year of the Disability Sport Fife (DSF) 7s Football League supported by the Scottish FA. There is now an S1/S2 section and a well established senior section for boys and girls with additional support needs, S3-S6. By winning the senior section last year for the second successive year, Balwearie HS repeated the achievement of Lochgelly HS, winners of the title in years one and two. The winners of the senior section will represent Fife at the national 7s finals organised by the Scottish FA at Ravenscraig on Wednesday 20th May.  

Glenrothes HS, Bell Baxter HS and Madras College players made a welcome return to the 7s League in February and regular participants Balwearie HS, Lochgelly HS and Woodmill HS were once again out in force. Kirkcaldy HS has become a major partner of DSF and once again the school handed over their 7s pitches during the lunch period for the tournament.

Newcomers Glenrothes HS made an impression in the S1/S2 tournament by defeating Lochgelly HS by four goals to one and finishing runners up to undefeated Balwearie HS who also won the Series 1 competition. Top scorer from Series 1, Robert Sellstrom from Balwearie HS was once again leading scorer in the S1/S2 competition with six goals.

In the S3/S6 tournament Balwearie HS pupils were undefeated and topped the table once again. Bell Baxter HS/Madras College made an impact return to the competition with a 3-2 win against Lochgelly HS but lost out on their final two matches. The only loss for Woodmill HS was against the undefeated Balwearie HS and they finished runners up in the senior section. Stewart Taylor from Balwearie HS was the joint leading scorer in the senior section with four of the nine goals scored by his school team. Kal Smith from Woodmill HS also finished on four goals, more than half his school total. Liam Downie (Balwearie HS) and Sam Fernando (Bell Baxter HS) finished with three goals each in a high scoring senior section.

With only series 3 remaining Balwearie HS pupils are leading comfortably in both junior and senior section of the 2015 DSF 7s League.

> Click to view more images please visit our Picture Gallery section

 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Two Medals for Fife Bowlers

The 2015 IBD World Championships are well under way in Hutt, New Zealand and Fife disabled bowlers are contributing significantly to a great Scottish team performance. Mid way through the Championships, the Scots have won three individual gold medals plus a pairs silver. Teams from Australia, Canada, England, Hong Kong, Israel, Japan, Korea, New Zealand, Northern Ireland, South Africa and Scotland are taking part. South Africa are the reigning world champions and the Scots hope to go one better than the runners up position of four years ago in Pretoria.

Maria Spencer from Dunfermline won gold at the last world championships in South Africa and she has repeated this performance in the Ladies B3 section for visually impaired bowlers with director and guide Sarah Jane Ewing from Dunfermline. Michael Simpson from Auchtermuchty, partnered by Rosemary Lenton from Dumfries, has once again won a pairs silver medal but on this occasion in the B7 mixed pairs. The B7 section is arguably the most competitive in the championships. There were gold medal individual wins for visually impaired bowlers Irene Edgar B2 from Saltcoats and Harry Harris B3 Larbert. A wonderful start to the championships for the Scots and there are still several sections to be completed during the week ahead.

Bob Dick from Cupar is Head Coach for Team Scotland and Celia Smith, Eric MacMillan and Sarah Jane Ewing from Fife are part of the support staff. In addition to Michael and Maria, Billy Allan Cowdenbeath, Barbara MacMillan Cowdenbeath and Martin Hunter Burntisland are part of the 12 strong Scottish team.

Photos: Michael Simpson and Maria Spencer
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife Loses a Fine Athlete

Disability Sport Fife (DSF) has learned of the sudden and unexpected death of west Fife athlete Jimmy Binnie, one of the most popular members in the history of the Association. Jimmy became involved with DSF in the mid seventies while attending  Rosyth ATC and thereafter when he was a member of the Woodlands Centre in Dunfermline. More recently Jimmy was an enthusiastic member of DSF as an independent and he loved football and bowls in particular.

Jimmy was a most enthusiastic bowler but over the years he competed in many sports and represented Fife in lots of different national championships. Jimmy represented Fife at Summer Special Olympics Games in different areas of the UK and won a number of Fife indoor, outdoor and carpet bowls titles. In his early sporting years he also excelled in swimming and athletics and would never turn down the opportunity to compete for Fife anywhere at any time. Jimmy was a most popular team member with support staff and fellow team members alike.

Jimmy Binnie will never be forgotten in Fife for all that he achieved and all the support he gave to those less able than himself. Jimmy was kind, considerate and welcoming to all those with whom he came in contact. The contribution made by Jimmy Binnie to the development of disability sport in Fife is significant.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife Athlete Heading to London

2015 is a very important year in the life of athlete Callum Sloan from Dunfermline. Callum will move from Primary School to High School and in April he heads south to compete in his first London Mini Marathon, the major junior event in the life of any emerging young wheelchair athlete.

Callum is a very active participant in Disability Sport Fife (DSF) and a member of the DSF Futures squad. The squad recognises and supports developing athletes who have the potential to be involved on the disability performance sporting pathway.

Since he received his first racing wheelchair from the students from the University of St Andrews Netball Club, he has been totally committed to realising his goal of competing in London. Under the guidance of DSF athletics coach Pamela Robson he has lowered his times on the track but he is in no doubt about the challenges he will face in the London mini marathon.

Callum is one of a number of excellent young Fife athletes and players who are members of the DSF Futures squad. All have the potential to go far in sport and perhaps one day compete in an international competition. All athletes fully understand that the standard of competition nationally and internationally in disability sport rises each year and only by hard work and commitment will they realise their dream. Callum Sloan is a very talented young athlete who has the potential to go all the way in disability sport.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Big Lottery support for learning in Fife

West Fife Community Support Services is the fifth Disability Sport Fife member organisation to receive badminton equipment as part of the Big Lottery funded “supporting learning with equipment” project. The project involves teachers attending badminton workshops organised by DSF and tutored by Jane Russell of Badminton Scotland. The project is also supported by Yonex.

Richard Brickley, President of DSF with Anna Capon from West Fife CSS.

The two hour workshop offers participants advice on how to deliver basic badminton coaching in an appropriate, purposeful, enjoyable and safe environment. As well as looking at fun games and drills the participants are introduced to the basic rules of the sport.

The training has resulted in an increased entry for the Disability Sport Fife badminton championships at the Kirkcaldy Leisure Centre in March 2015.

West Fife Community Support Services are very involved with Disability Sport Fife and members support DSF weekly sports sessions, annual events and coach education and development. Anna Capon from West Fife CSS recently received a received a badminton bag from Richard Brickley, President of Disability Sport Fife for supporting the badminton workshops.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife’s top Water Skier

Carter Taylor is Student at Carnegie College, Dunfermline and attends the Aspire Course.

Carter is now 18 years old and has just completed his fourth season of competitive water skiing and fifth year of competitive swimming with Disability Sport Fife.

Carter’s main passion is water skiing and regardless of his autism, limited speech and lack of social awareness he is able to compete alongside mainstream and like-minded people which is unique within the sport.

“With the support of Waterski & Wakeboard Scotland I have developed my skills both on and off the water and managed to enter all Scottish Competitions in 2014 achieving personal best scores in competition and in training. Alongside this I have increased my British standing”

Carter’s highest achievement in 2014 was 1st place under 21's Scottish Open Slalom Championship and 3rd place within the Open of the same event.

“I waterski throughout the winter alongside of my other sporting activities and competitions in swimming and running. I also train hard developing my fitness through daily gym work/ TRX training and running”

Disability Sport Fife is massively proud of all that Carter has achieved in the sport of water skiing in particular. Carter is a most valued member of DSF and we wish him continued success in a very complex technical sport. 
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Bowls Scotland Conference

One of Bowls Scotland's key objectives is to develop a highly skilled coaching workforce through appropriate support. To aid this Bowls Scotland is delighted to announce it is hosting an inaugural National Coaching Conference which will take place on Sunday 8 March 2015 at Edinburgh Training and Conference Venue, St Mary’s Street, Edinburgh.

This event is appropriate for bowls coaches at all levels, including those who have yet to undertake qualifications but who have an interest in coaching bowls.

All existing and potential future coaches throughout Scotland are eligible to attend.

This one-day conference will commence at 10am with a very exciting keynote address on Understanding Talent from Tony Stanger, sportscotland Institute of Sport Talent Manager and former Scottish Rugby Internationalist. Tony will be supported by other highly qualified individuals delivering an insightful and highly valuable programme to support and develop your coaching skills in a series of workshops. Full details can be found at www.bowlsscotland.com/coaching-conference.

The cost for this event is £10 for members of Bowls Scotland affiliated clubs and £12.50 for non-members and includes a goody bag on arrival, all workshops, refreshments throughout the day and lunch.

On street parking is available all around the vicinity of the venue and is free of charge on Sundays. A multi-storey car park is located on Holyrood Road at the bottom of St Mary's Street but carries a day rate of around £15, therefore street parking is recommended. There is a 10% discount to the parking fee for conference delegates and tickets can be validated at the event.

The venue is just a 5-minute walk from the Market Street exit from Waverley Station, and around 10 minutes walk from the bus station at St Andrews Square.

Spaces are limited, so  book now to avoid disappointment.  Please feel free to forward this message to any of your sport colleagues who you feel may be interested in attending.

Valerie Wright

Coach & Volunteer Education Officer

Bowls Scotland

National Centre for Bowling

Northfield, Hunters Avenue,

Ayr KA8 9AL

Tel: 07841 923 451  Email: valwright@bowlsscotland.com

 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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East Cross Country Series 4

Series 4 of the East X Country Championships was held at Peffermill Playing Fields in Edinburgh.  Athletes from Lochgelly High School, Balwearie High School, Woodmill High School and Bell Baxter High School participated in the event and once again there were many Fife successes.

In the girls race over 1Km there race wins for Megan Wilson – S1 (Woodmill HS), Louise Harley – S2 (Lochgelly HS), Alex Syme – S3 (Woodmill HS), Marie Wilson – S5 (Lochgelly HS) and Dione Mackie – S6 (Balwearie HS).  As well as those five year group winners there were four athletes finished in second within their year group race.  These athletes were Courtney Morris – S1 (Lochgelly HS), Kerry Kotlewski – S2 (Bell Baxter HS), Lee Fleming – S3 (Lochgelly HS) and Taylor McDowall – S5 (Balwearie HS).

In the equivalent boys race over 1Km there were year group wins for Dean Bruce – S3 (Bell Baxter HS), Fraser Wilson – S4 (Lochgelly HS) and Andrew Main – S6 (Lochgelly HS).  In addition the following athletes recorded second place finishes in their respective races.  Shakeel Ul-haq – S1 (Lochgelly HS), Robert Sellstrom – S2 (Balwearie HS), Reece Dickson – S3 (Balwearie HS) and Isaac Fraser – S5 (Balwearie HS).

Over 2Km Alex Evans – S2 (Balwearie HS), Matthew Blair – S3 (Woodmill HS) and John Sapsed – S6 (Woodmill HS) were year group winners with Stuart Taylor – S3 (Balwearie HS) and Brandon Eason – S4 (Balwearie HS) finishing in second place.

Over the longest championships race of 3Km, Liam Downie – S4 (Balwearie HS) and Ryan Dunwoodie – S6 (Balwearie HS) were the year group winners.  Liam and Ryan were the fastest juniors in Series 4 over 3Km.

Another four Series cross country programme has been organised by Scottish Athletics and enjoyed enormously by pupils with additional support needs from Fife High Schools.  All athletes now turn their attention to the Scottish Championships at Bellahouston Park in Glasgow on 17 March.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife Rotaries Support Disability Sport

Disability Sport Fife (DSF) was established in 1977 and since its inception the Association has been supported by individual Rotary Clubs from across Fife. Specific clubs over the years have financially supported Fife teams and individual high performance sportsmen and women. Fife Paralympians of the past have relied on Rotarians to assist them with funding for expensive sports equipment and DSF has been able to call on support from Rotarians as volunteers. The DSF events programme is supported by Rotary and the St Andrews Kilrymont Rotary Club Sports Award and Bursary are most sought after prizes amongst Fife disabled sports participants.
 

A new Rotary/DSF initiative that was originally the brainchild of the Leven Rotary Club is set to surpass all joint projects of the last 40 years. The Association of Fife Rotary Clubs has agreed to fund DSF for the next five years from a levy paid by each of the clubs in membership of the Association of Fife Rotary Clubs. 

Photo: Derek Thomson (left) Richard Brickley (right)

The money will be used to support aspiring disabled athletes and players from the DSF Performance, Futures and Freshers squads. Athletes with potential require financial support when they are starting out on the performance pathway and DSF Rotary bursaries will be awarded at a critical time in an athlete’s career. Key DSF personnel will identify suitable recipients and the bursaries will be awarded annually.

The first instalment of Rotary funding was recently handed over by the Chairman of the Association of Fife Rotary Clubs, Derek Thomson, to DSF President Richard Brickley MBE. Each Association representative was thrilled at the potential of this new project in the long history of partnership working and cooperation.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Preparing for the Fife Championships

The Annual Sports Festival organised by Disability Sport Fife gets under way on Friday 6th March with the longest running event in the calendar, the 2015 Fife Swimming Championships. Entries are pouring in and entry forms are still available on the DSF website hosted by the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust. www.fifeleisure.org.uk (find DSF on the Health and Well Being drop down menu)

Swimming will attract the largest entry of all the sports during the three weeks of the Festival. One sport that has really taken off in the last five years in Fife is disability badminton. Inspired and influenced by the late Russell Hogg from Dunfermline, the Fife Championships have grown in numbers and popularity since they were first introduced to the Sports Festival. Jane Russell of Badminton Scotland has been running workshops for coaches and thanks to support from the Big Lottery it has been possible to offer new equipment to back up development. It is expected that there will be the largest entry ever at the Fife Championships at the Kirkcaldy Leisure Centre on Wednesday 18th March.



Photo; Session lead coach Alex Bird (extreme right) and Euan Bell (extreme left) with some of the players and volunteers involved in the Glenrothes coach led session.

One of the most successful badminton coach led sessions is held at the Michael Woods Sports and Leisure Centre in Glenrothes on Monday evenings between 20.00 and 21.00 hrs. The session is led by DSF coach Alex Bird who is ably assisted by assistant coach Euan Bell. In addition there is a team of excellent coach volunteers and over 20 young players are registered for the session. The focus is clearly on the 2015 Fife Championships and as always new players are most welcome. Contact the DSF Administrator Norma Buchanan norma.buchanan@fife.gov.uk for further details.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Glenrothes Strollers take on National Team

Glenrothes Strollers have earned the reputation of being a truly inclusive community football club.  Every Saturday morning the club provides football training and coaching for teenagers and adults with disabilities.  The Glenrothes Strollers Superstars are now an established presence within disability football in Scotland and the club is committed to ensuring this section of club provision continues to blossom as interest in disability football continues to grow. 

Club inclusive officer, Alan Roberts, accepted an invitation from Scottish FA Disability Officer, David McArdle, to travel to the National Sports Centre at Inverclyde for a match against Scotland’s leading players with cerebral palsy, head injury or stroke.  The national team is currently preparing for the 2015 World Championships and coaches are eager for the players to get as many games under their belts as possible.  The match against the Strollers was arranged for the end of the first week of their training camp and there was excitement throughout the club at the prospect of being involved in such a prestigious occasion.  Team Scotland have been ranked as high as six in world football and will be serious challengers at the World Championships in England this year.  The current squad have been together for several years and hope to progress up the world rankings after this year’s championships.


Photo: Glenrothes Strollers and Team Scotland together following their challenge match in Largs

Strollers coach, Joe McCafferty, described the atmosphere on the bus as memorable, when the 20 leading players from Fife headed to the West of Scotland for the major sporting occasion of their football careers to date.  All players fully appreciated the significance of the occasion and were thrilled to be asked to play against the national squad.  There was no doubt in the players’ minds that it would be a major challenge.  Undoubtedly there were nerves but the support staff continued to convince the rather apprehensive Strollers that they were well prepared, following quality winter training, and they could do no more than give of their best.

Catching sight of the Scotland squad in their national kit was daunting but the Strollersquickly realised this was a chance in a lifetime opportunity to play and compete with the best in Scotland.  Not surprisingly the experience and superior skills and fitness of the national squad was apparent early on and the Strollers appreciated this was a challenge beyond their capabilities.  The players stuck to their task scoring a few goals and playing to the best of their abilities.  The match was competitive and every Strollers player appreciated the opportunity that had come their way.  To play the national squad in World Championships year was an honour and a challenge but the occasion would be remembered by all involved for the rest of their playing lives. 

Over the lunch period the Scotland squad and the Strollers players enjoyed one another’s company.  The Strollers boys wished the Scotland squad well for the forthcoming championships and headed back to Fife with many happy memories and new friendships made.  The Strollers are now looking forward to the remaining Scottish FA League fixtures during the months of February and March and weekly preparations at the Lomond Centre on Saturday mornings between 10.00 and 12.00 hrs are focused on these fixtures during the winter months.  Disability Sport Fife and Glenrothes Strollers work in partnership to encourage inclusive community based disability football.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Boccia Leaders Workshop Fife

For the second successive year Scottish Disability Sport tutor Andrinne Craig from Aberdeen came to Fife to deliver a Boccia Leaders Workshop for Disability Sport Fife (DSF). Once again the workshop was judged an outstanding success and Fife now has 12 new leaders committed to developing the sport across Fife.

Of particular significance for this course were the number of athletes who signed up to be leaders and volunteers. DSF is committed to encouraging as many of its present and former athletes and players to become involved in coaching and volunteering. For the first time in many years Fife will run a Fife Boccia Championships as an extension to the successful weekly boccia session led by DSF coach Catherine Carruthers at the Michael Woods Sports and Leisure Centre in Glenrothes.

Photo: Andrinne Craig (extreme left) with boccia leaders
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Inclusive PE Training for Kilmaron Staff

Scottish Disability Sport (SDS) with support from Education Scotland and Sainsbury’s has embarked on a programme of improving the quality of PE for children and young with severe and complex disabilities/additional learning needs. The aim is to provide an appropriate workshop for Education Services staff and significant others who deliver daily PE in schools across Scotland.

Following a very successful consultation day and the production of an interim report, SDS is now undertaking a series of follow up consultations with appropriate school staff in local communities. On behalf of SDS, Richard Brickley, President of Disability Sport Fife, led the first of these activity days with the staff of Kilmaron School plus two PE specialists from Bell Baxter HS.

The tutor shared resources and expertise and school staff considered the appropriateness of specific identified activities for pupils with complex disabilities/additional learning needs. The half day workshop was judged a success by participants and tutor. Knowledge gained will assist school staff to further develop the already well established PE programme in Kilmaron and at the same time assist SDS to shape a workshop that is fit for purpose.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Disability Golf Events Planned

The two most successful golf events in the disability golf calendar are planned for Inverness and Cupar, Fife on 5th and 18th May respectively. For further information contact  Ronnie Mitchell and Norma Buchanan/Craig Martin in Highland and Fife.

Sport                          Golf

Event Name             North of Scotland Open

Date                           Tuesday 5 May 2015

Venue                        Culcabock Golf Course, Inverness IV2 3XQ

Times                         10.00 hrs (18 holes)

                                    11.45 hrs (9 holes)

Entry Fee                  £10 (18 holes)

                                    £5 (9 holes)

                                    This includes meals for all golfers plus carers

Contact                     Ronnie Mitchell

Email                          rmitchell1146@hotmail.co.uk

Mobile                        07979 631023

Phone                        01463 792267

Sport                          Golf

Event Name             Fife Open

Date                           Monday 18 May 2015

Venue                        Elmwood Golf Club, Cupar

Times                        10.30 hrs

Entry Fee                  £10 for 18 holes

                                    £7.50 for 9 holes

                                    £5 for skills tests

                                    (covers lunch for players only)

Contact                     Norma Buchanan                              Craig Martin

Email                          norma.buchanan@five.gov.uk         craigmartin@fife.ac.uk

Mobile                                                                                    0844 248 0115

Phone                        03451 555555 Ext 444989             01334 658800
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife Inclusion Training at Auchmuty HS

Teachers from schools in east, west and central Fife travelled to Auchmuty HS for two twilight sessions on disability inclusion training organised by Scottish Disability Sport in conjunction with Disability Sport Fife and the PEPAS network in Fife.

This was one of a series of courses run over the past two years, coordinated by Susan Stewart the PEPAS Lead in Fife. Teachers eager to learn more about physical activity, including sport for children, young people and adults with a disability attended and were introduced to theory and practical sessions on the subject matter.



The Inclusion Training is endorsed by Education Scotland and at the end of session two all candidates completed a written assessment. SDS tutors Heather Lowden and Richard Brickley delivered the two session course and were delighted with the enthusiasm and commitment of the course candidates.

Photo: Tutor Heather Lowden (extreme left) with the course candidates. Richard took the photo.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Preparing for the Fife Championships

The Annual Sports Festival organised by Disability Sport Fife gets under way on Friday 6th March with the longest running event in the calendar, the 2015 Fife Swimming Championships. Entries are pouring in and entry forms are still available on the DSF website hosted by the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust. www.fifeleisure.org.uk (find DSF on the Health and well Being drop down menu)

Swimming will attract the largest entry of all the sports during the three weeks of the Festival. One sport that has really taken off in the last five years in Fife is disability badminton. Inspired and influenced by the late Russell Hogg from Dunfermline, the Fife Championships have grown in numbers and popularity since they were first introduced to the Sports Festival. Jane Russell of Badminton Scotland has been running workshops for coaches and thanks to support from the Big Lottery it has been possible to offer new equipment to back up development. It is expected that there will be the largest entry ever at the Fife Championships at the Kirkcaldy Leisure Centre on Wednesday 18th March.


Photo; Session lead coach Alex Bird (extreme right) and Euan Bell (extreme left) with some of the players and volunteers involved in the Glenrothes coach led session.

One of the most successful badminton coach led sessions is held at the Michael Woods Sports and Leisure Centre in Glenrothes on Monday evenings between 20 00 and 21 00. The session is led by DSF coach Alex Bird who is ably assisted by assistant coach Euan Bell. In addition there is a team of excellent coach volunteers and over 20 young players are registered for the session. The focus is clearly on the 2015 Fife Championships and as always new players are most welcome. Contact the DSF Administrator Norma Buchanan norma.buchanan@afife.gov.uk for further details.


Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Three National Titles for Fife Bowlers

The 2015 Scottish Carpet Bowls Championships organised by Scottish Disability Sport were held at the Dundee International Sports Centre.  Disability Sport Fife (DSF) has an excellent track record in these championships but several top bowlers were missing this year because of their involvement in the IBD World Bowls Championships in New Zealand.  The Fife team however travelled to Dundee with confidence.  All players had earned the right to compete in the championships by their performances at the Fife Championships held in Glenrothes in November, 2014.

Kenny Dow, one of the three Fife title winners at the 2015 Scottish Carpet Bowls Championships

In the mixed section for wheelchair users the final involved two players from Central Fife Community Support Services.  Ian Green progressed to the final after winning all of his qualifying ties. Theresa Wyse lost one match against Ian in reaching the final and that was only by 1 shot.  In the final however Ian was the much stronger player and lifted the gold medal with a 12 shots to 6 victory.

Kenny Dow from Central Fife Community Support Services and Eleanor Clark from Kirkcaldy contested the ambulant mixed section for restricted physically and sensory impaired bowlers.  Both players progressed comfortably to the final with Kenny running out a very worthy winner to record his third national victory in the past five years.  The victory for Kenny meant a double gold medal performance for the Central Fife CSS members who attend the Forward Centre in Glenrothes. Their commitment to carpet bowls over the past few years has been exceptional and their results in major competitions confirms the progress they have made.

Jamie Weir from Dunfermline HS is the first junior physically disabled bowler to represent Fife at the National Championships for many years.  Jamie appeared in his first Fife Championships in 2014 and made a great impression.  Following his selection for the Fife team he practised regularly with staff at Dunfermline HS.  His determination and commitment have paid dividends because in his first attempt he has won the national junior title. This young bowler comes from a bowls family and has an excellent future ahead in the sport.  Janie is already making preparations for the Fife Lawn Bowls Championships that will be held in June at the Beveridge Park in Kirkcaldy.

In the section for male bowlers with a learning disability, Fife’s leading bowlers Craig Donaldson and Robert McMahon from Central Fife CSS reached the semi-final stages and played well throughout the tournament.  Robert lost out to the eventual winner Stanley Robb and defending champion Craig lost to Andrew Harrison who was the champion in 2002 and 2008.  Both Fife bowlers should be very pleased with their performances.

In the section for female bowlers with a learning disability, Julie Allan from East Fife CSS and Michelle Wallace from Central Fife CSS reached the quarter finals with Michelle progressing to the semi-finals and eventually losing out to the championship runner-up.  In total, Fife had three semi-finalists and three of the last eight in the sections for bowlers with a learning disability. A great Team Fife performance.

Six titles in total were contested at the 2015 championships with Disability Sport Fife members winning three titles and three bowlers reaching the semi-finals in two other sections.  In the absence of international players Billy Allan, Barbara McMillan and Maria Spencer in the non-restricted ambulant section it was left to newcomer Stuart Chesby to fly the Fife flag and how well he played.  Stuart like Jamie has been identified as a young bowler of the future but in his qualifying section he was drawn against the current mens and ladies Scottish champions and a past mens champion.  Stuart played well but his more experienced opponents gave little away in all their ties.  Stuart will be back next year a much stronger player and like Jamie he is already preparing for the lawn bowls championships at the Beveridge Park BC.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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2015 Calendar of Events

Disability Sport Fife has produced a calendar of events for the period February through to November 2015. The calendar is always being updated by Norma and is available as a download from the DSF website. Click here

The early part of the year is tie up with the Annual Fife Sports Festival and football, swimming and cross country qualifying events leading up to the national championships. The Fife Open Golf has been moved to Monday 18th May and of course everybody associated with disability sport in Fife must have the AGM and Awards evening date of 11th May in their diary. Once again there will be an invitation 800 metres at the Cupar Highland Games and the Fife Track and Field Championships, the largest event on the calendar, are scheduled for Wednesday June 10 th at Pitreavie. The Inter Area Bowls Test Match for Bowlers with a Learning Disability will be held in Glasgow on Wednesday 12 th August and DSF hopes to win back the team title. Last year we won the Sportshall team title in Stirling and we are looking to defend that success on Wednesday 4th March. We are also looking for new athletes with a physical, sensory or learning disability for team Fife.

If you have any questions about the calendar of events please do not hesitate to contact Norma in the DSF office.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Good Start to Year for Fife Athlete

Owen Miller from Dunfermline Track & Field is the leading middle distance athlete with a learning disability in Scotland.  Owen’s ambition is one day to represent Great Britain at a Paralympic Games.  In the lead up to the Games in London in 2012 he ran exceptionally well but just failed to make the required qualifying time that would have offered him team selection.  Undaunted, the young Disability Sport Fife (DSF) athlete is even more determined to continue to challenge for a place in the Great Britain team for future international events.

Under the guidance of coach Gemma Nicol, Owen has made a great start to the new year with an outstanding run at the Musselburgh New Year Sprint where he won the 800m in a time of 1:57.  This was followed up by two excellent cross country runs in Alloa and Dundee. 

All of this came off the back of a successful winter training programme.  In his indoor schedule Owen has also demonstrated progress by winning his heat at the National Open in a time of 1:59 to record a new personal best indoor performance.  Owen is consistently running around 2 mins indoors which is indicates he is in good form for the start of the outdoor season.

Owen competes in the T20 class.  In 2015 there is one major International which may feature on his programme.  That is up to the selectors.  Competition in the T20 class is always very strong but the young Dunfermline athlete is very determined and never gives anything less than 100%.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Disability Bowlers Head to New Zealand

12 years ago in Malaysia the Scottish Disability Bowls Team made an impact at the Bowls World Championships.  Four years later in Australia a team competition was introduced to the World Championships and Scotland finished in third place.  Four years ago Team Scotland travelled to South Africa and went one better finishing runners-up to hosts South Africa in what was described as one of the most memorable disability sports performances by a Scottish team.  Later this month the Scottish team will head to New Zealand, trying to improve on their South African finishing position and compete for medals in a significant number of disability bowls classes.

Five physically disabled and visually impaired bowlers from Fife have been selected for the Scottish team along with four support staff.  Once again Bob Dick from Cupar has been appointed Head Coach and he will be ably assisted by Celia Smith, Eric McMillan and Sarah Jane Ewing.  Bowlers Michael Simpson (Auchtermuchty), Billy Allan (Cowdenbeath), Martin Hunter (Burntisland), Maria Spencer (Dunfermline) and Barbara McMillan (Cowdenbeath) will be trying their best against the world’s leading disabled bowlers.  Scotland won a silver medal in visually impaired Para-bowls at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow but were disappointed not to medal in the triples for physically disabled bowlers where they went into the competition as one of the favoured teams.  A fourth place finish, following a play-off against England, was a good performance but the team members who were part of the Scottish triples are intent on reversing this result in New Zealand and winning titles.


Photo LtoR: Eric McMillan (coach), Billy Allan, Maria, Spencer, Martin Hunter, Barbara McMillan, Michael Simpson and Sarah Jane Ewing (director).  Missing from photo Celia Smith and Bob Dick.

In the lead up to the Commonwealth Games, Team Scotland won gold in the Home Nations and Invitation 8 Nations at Kelvingrove in Glasgow.  That earned them the reputation as one of the strongest triples in the world and in New Zealand the Scottish bowlers will be hoping to reproduce their 2013 form.  For Billy Allan it will be his fourth World Championships and for Michael Simpson who won a silver medal with Kevin Wallace in South Africa, it will be his second.  For Martin Hunter it will be his first World Championships, Barbara McMillan her second World Championships and Maria Spencer will be travelling to New Zealand as a World Championships gold medallist from South Africa.  Maria is the only visually impaired bowler within the five and her Director on the green will be Sarah Jane Ewing.  They have become a formidable partnership and they demonstrate great confidence in one another in every match they play. 

The Scottish team has considerable experience plus a number of players who are competing at this level for the first time.  Disability bowls is one of the largest  participant sports in Fife and many Disability Sport Fife bowlers look up to these five great bowls ambassadors and role models.  Bob Dick has been leading Scottish Disability Bowls Teams since the Commonwealth Games in Manchester where the Scottish Triple won gold for the first time.

 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Athletics in Fife Has Never Been Stronger

Disability athletics in Fife has never been stronger. Derek Rae from Leven has been selected for Great Britain, the first athlete to reach this level since past Paralympians Caroline Baird from Cupar and Colin Keay from Kirkcaldy in the 80s and 90s. Disability Sport Fife has just taken possession of two seated throwing frames with support from Scottish Athletics and REMAP. Last year DSF athletics teams won the national senior athletics team title and the junior sportshall team title for the first time. Junior Fife athletes have excelled in cross country events in 2014 and 2015 and hopes are medals at the forthcoming national championships. Owen Miller and Sam Fernando continue to impress in middle distance and cross country and for the future wheelchair athletes Callum Sloan and Jonny Brown have enormous potential.

DSF has encouraged seven new coaches to gain Scottish Athletics awards in 2015 with financial support from Scottish Athletics, Scottish Disability Sport and Fife Council. Athletics is widely practiced across Fife in sessions organised by DSF at Pitreavie Athletics Centre, Michael Woods Sports Centre and Madras College. The DSF coaching workforce of Pamela Robson, Gabby Doig, Stuart Munn, David Brown, Caroline Clunie and others continue to produce top quality coaching for children and adults with physical, sensory or learning disabilities. DSF has picked up a significant number of new members with a specific interest over the past few months. Disability athletics in Fife has never been in a better place.

Photo: some of the young athletes who attend the DSF run, jump and throws session at the Michael Woods centre led by DSF coach Pamela Robson.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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First Ever Fife Para Rower

Graham McIntyre from Leven is a member of the Disability Sport Fife (DSF) Futures Squad. Graham has achieved his first success in national competitive sport after only one year’s involvement in the DSF programme.  At the 2014 Scottish Indoor Rowing Championships held at Scotstoun Leisure Centre in Glasgow, Graham won a gold medal in the mens 1000 metres arms and shoulders category in his first ever Para indoor rowing competition.

Following a road traffic accident in 1998, Graham was paralysed from the waist down but now completes around 32,500 kilometres per week training for Para -rowing.  Three to four times a week he travels to the Scottish Rowing Centre at Strathclyde Park where he is coached by Scotland’s national Para-rowing coach, John Blair.  Graham’s success at the Scottish Championships has encouraged him to consider competing in the British Championships which will be held in February in London.  Graham has also received support and encouragement from the gym staff at the Michael Woods Sports and Leisure Centre in Glenrothes. Graham now has a national classification for disability sport and a very promising sporting career ahead. 

Graham’s ambition is to transfer from indoor rowing to rowing on the water at Strathclyde Park and he hopes that this will happen around Easter time.  Thereafter he will have the opportunity to compete in the Home Countries regattas and other major competitions north and south of the Border.  Scottish Rowing considers Graham an athlete with potential. This was identified by DSF when he first came to the attention of the Association shortly after the opening of the new Sports and Leisure Centre in Glenrothes.  Graham has also demonstrated promise in the sport of wheelchair curling and hopes to pursue that interest at either the newly refurbished centre at Kinross or the national centre through in Stirling.  Graham is the first DSF member to be involved in rowing but hopefully not the last.


Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Early Notice DSF AGM

DSF has set a goal of trying to have 100 attendees at the 2015 Annual General Meeting and Awards Evening. The occasion of the sporting year in Fife will be held in the Michael Woods Sports and Leisure Centre in Glenrothes and the date is Monday 11th May between 19 00 and 21 00.

This is the time of year when DSF celebrates successes - there have been many - and acknowledges the many athletes, players, coaches and volunteers who have made the Association so successful in the year past. DSF is keen to see as many athletes and players as possible attending and everybody is welcome. For organisational reasons we would appreciate if potential attendees inform Norma Buchanan, the DSF Administrator of their intention to attend.



DSF is delighted that Provost Jim Leishman has agreed to attend for the second time in three years and present trophies to the individual award winners. DSF as always will welcome present and past Paralympians from Fife and the new Chair of Scottish Disability Sport, Janice Eaglesham to her first DSF AGM and Awards Evening. Members are reminded that they can nominate for any of the categories and the more submissions we receive the better.

Remember to put the date in your diary and let Norma know you are planning to attend. There are lots of talented players, coaches and volunteers in Fife and this is the occasion to recognise their input to disability sport in Fife.

Photo: Provost with the Award Winners in 2013
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Cupar Highland Games

For the second year the Members  of  the Organising Committee of Cupar Highland Games, in partnership with Disability Sport Fife, will include an 800 metres race for male/female athletes with an intellectual impairment/learning disability in the Games schedule for Saturday  13th June 2015.

- the race is open to male/female athletes who have recorded a time below 2:45M/3:15F for 800 metres in the past year.

- in traditional Highland Games fashion, entrants will be “handicapped” (receive a start) according to their submitted times and the time of the fastest runner entered.

All potential participants should register their interest in the first instance with Norma Buchanan, Administrator, Disability Sport Fife,  Michael Woods Centre, Viewfield, Glenrothes, Fife KY6 2RD. Email norma.buchanan@fife.gov.uk.  Tel 03451 555555 Ext 444989.                                                                                                                 

Richard Brickley MBE, President of Disability Sport and a Past Chieftan of Cupar Highland Games, is available to discuss potential involvement with any athlete prior to registration for this unique inclusive event

> Click to download poster
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Disability Judo Comes to Fife

Judo Scotland has been working with Scottish Disability Sport for a  number of years in trying to increase levels of interest and involvement in the exciting sport of judo. DSF is now involved in a project with Judo Scotland called Transition Judo that aims to introduce novice  participants with disabilities to judo at the Michael Woods Sports and Leisure Centre and thereafter encourage them to become involved in  local clubs with local coaches.  Session details are as follows:

- Stephen Somerville, Education Development Manager at Judo Scotland, will lead the five initial sessions with local coach support. Rachel White from Cupar is one of the local coaches supporting the project.

participants 10 + with a physical, sensory or learning disability may attend. Uniform - track bottoms or equivalent and t shirt. No shoes.

Wednesday 25th Feb until Wednesday 25th March inclusive (5 sessions) 17 00 - 18 00 at the Michael Woods Sports and Leisure   Centre. £2.70/£3.80    

All potential participants must register their interest in the first instance with Norma Buchanan, Administrator, Disability Sport Fife, Michael Woods Sports Centre, Viewfield, Glenrothes, Fife KY6 2RD. Email norma.buchanan@fife.gov.uk.  Tel 03451 555555 Ext 444989. 

Richard Brickley, President of DSF is available in the DSF office to offer advice or answer any questions from potential participants or families.  The sport of judo is inclusive and performance players with a visual  impairment currently have access to the Paralympic pathway.

> Click to download poster
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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East Cross Country Series 3

The January Series of the East Cross Country programme for 2014/2015 was held at Peffermill Playing Fields in Edinburgh with a starting line-up of 67 runners.  Fife was well represented by pupils from Lochgelly HS, Balwearie HS, Woodmill HS, Glenrothes HS and Bell Baxter HS.  Cross country is one of the most popular activities offered in secondary schools with departments for pupils with additional support needs across Fife.

In the girls 1Km races Megan Wilson (Woodmill HS) and Louise Harley (Lochgelly HS) were the fastest S1 and S2 athletes respectively.  Leah Fleming (Lochgelly HS) was the first S3 girl across the line and Marie Wilson (Lochgelly HS) was the leading S5 runner.  Dionne Mackie (Balwearie HS) recorded the fastest time in the race for S6 pupils.

In the equivalent 1Km race for boys ShakeelUl-haq (Lochgelly HS) finished second in the S1 race, Robert Sellstrom (Balwearie HS) was the fastest S2 athlete and Dean Bruce (Bell Baxter) was the fastest S3 runner.  Fraser Wilson (Lochgelly HS) was the fastest S4 athlete and Isaac Fraser (Balwearie HS) the fastest athlete in S5.  Fife athletes completed a most successful day in the 1Km races when Andrew Main (Lochgelly HS) was the first S6 athlete over the finish line

Of the top four finishing positions over 2Km Fife athletes occupied three places.  Alex Evans (Balwearie HS) was the fastest S2 athlete, Matthew Blair (Woodmill HS) the fastest S3 athlete and Brandon Eason – S4 (Balwearie HS) was the fastest runner overall in a time of 8:54.

Once again the top two finishing positions over 3Km were occupied by Fife pupils.  In second place was Ryan Dunwoodie – S6 (Balwearie HS) who finished in a time of 13:27.  The overall winner was once again Sam Fernando – S4 (Bell Baxter HS) in an excellent time of 12:30 maintaining his undefeated run in the 3Km races.  Sam is a member of Fife AC.

Many thanks from Disability Sport Fife to Shona Malcolm (Scottish Athletics) and her team for organising another great cross country event. 
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife Swimmer Sets Sights on Texas

Last year Lucy Walkup from Glenrothes was a member of Carnegie Swimming Club and coached by John Szaranek.  Under John’s guidance Lucy qualified for her first Deaflympics in Russia and achieved a fourth place finish in her favoured 50m breaststroke.  Lucy has now left Auchmuty High School and moved to Stirling University to study for a BSC in Sports and Exercise Science and of course has continued her performance swimming career as a member of Stirling Swimming Club with new coach Kerry Wood. 

Lucy has now returned to a seven session weekly programme in a totally new swimming environment and the transition has been challenging.  2015 is however a new year and the very talented and exceptionally committed young Fife swimmer hopes to return to her best form in preparation for the World Championships later this year in Texas.

Lucy is loving University life and believes that she has settled well into her studies and her training is beginning to take shape.  Towards the end of last year Lucy chalked up some excellent performances including a very impressive 200m IM at the DSE Open.  Lucy also turned in quality performances at the British Universities Championships and Scottish Nationals.  

Her priorities at the moment are to regain the level of fitness she had last year with Carnegie SC and ensure that her level of performance is all that it can be.

In the period ahead she has a British Universities Long Course Championships, a major meet in Ireland being facilitated by Scottish Swimming and the British Deaf Championships where she has an outstanding track record.  Lucy will focus on her main events in the lead up to the World Championships and she is confident that her new coach Kerry Wood will help her to maintain her position as one of the world’s leading deaf swimmers.

As a specialist breaststroker, the young Disability Sport Fife member hopes that she will reach the final in all her breaststroke events in the USA and she is aiming for a podium finish in the 50m breaststroke.  Lucy Walkup is a most determined high performance swimmer with an outstanding track record locally, nationally and internationally and who would doubt this young Stirling University student is going to achieve her goals. Over the past few years Lucy has been financially supported by Bankhead Robes.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Lochgelly HS Junior Bowls Success

Disability Sport Fife (DSF) has identified bowls as one of its priority sports.  In performance bowls DSF is currently celebrating the selection of its five leading players for the IBD World Championships in New Zealand in February 2015. At the same time DSF is celebrating the involvement of juniors with additional support needs for the first time in the Fife Carpet Bowls Championships.

It was Lochgelly High School that entered a strong squad of boys and girls for the 2014 Fife Carpet Bowls Championships.  It was the first occasion that DSF had offered competition for school pupils and within the programme there were three sections.  Lochgelly HS is already heavily involved with DSF in cross country, swimming, track and field, badminton, football etc. and it was only a matter of time before the school signed up to bowls. 

Another junior who competed in the Fife Championships was Jamie Weir from Dunfermline High School.  Jamie is an ambulant physically disabled young bowler, the first junior with a physical impairment to compete in the Fife Championships.  Jamie has now qualified to represent Fife at the Scottish Carpet Bowls Championships organised by Scottish Disability Sport at the Dundee International Sports Centre on Saturday 31 January.

Photo:  The Fife Juniors with additional support needs from Lochgelly HS who competed at the 2014 Fife Championships.


Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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First GB Vest for Fife Marathon Runner

British Athletics has announced its Marathon team for the 2015 IPC World Championships.  The 26.2 mile route will be staged on Sunday 26 April at the Virgin Money London Marathon in advance of the IPC World Track and Field Championships in Doha this October.  At the same time as David Weir will be aiming for his first gold medal in his country’s colours since the London 2012 Paralympic Games, Derek Rae from Kirkcaldy and AnsterHaddies will be making his first appearance in a GB vest.  For David Weir the target will be to record a seventh win in the wheelchair race and for Derek it will be an opportunity to improve on the personal best time he set at the 2014 London Marathon of 2:44.33.

Derek Rae is a member of AnsterHaddies and is coached by Ron Morrison and Olympian Don Macgregor of Fife AC in St Andrews.  Over the past year Derek’s coaching team has managed his programme exceptionally well and each and every time he has taken to the roads in a major event he has recorded a personal best performance.  At one time Derek would run anywhere any time but since 2014 his carefully managed programme has taken him to a level where GB Paralympic Head Coach Paula Dunn and her team have offered him the opportunity to compete on the world stage. Not surprisingly Scottish Athletics has played its part in his competition career to date. Derek was a successful marathon runner prior to a motor cycle accident resulting in a brachial plexus injury that led to qualification as a T46 runner in Para-athletics.

Derek is one of only six GB athletes selected for the GB and Northern Ireland Marathon team and the selection of the Disability Sport Fife member is a culmination of incredible hard work over a significant number of years.  

Derek has a highly committed backup team and they have played a vital role in supporting and encouraging him along the way.  Among the many delighted bystanders will be his fellow AnsterHaddies plus the NHS Fife medical and physio teams who played such an important role after Derek’s accident. Locally he has received outstanding physiotherapy, nutrition and strength and conditioning advice. Derek’s wife Susan and his parents Susan and Les are over the moon about the selection

Derek Rae is an inspiration to Para-sport and mainstream athletes throughout the country and within Fife he has been an incredible ambassador for disability sport since he joined the Fife programme.  Derek is the first to acknowledge the many people across Fife who have supported him in so many ways.  Derek acknowledges that this is another milestone in the athletics career that he hopes one day will lead him to GB selection for a Paralympic Games.

Photo:  Derek running at the Great Scottish Run where he completed a half marathon in 1:13.03

> Read more about Derek in our Athletes Profiles Section

 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife 7s Football League 2015

This is the fifth year of the Disability Sport Fife (DSF) 7s League. There is now an S1/S2 section and a well established senior section for boys and girls with additional support needs, S3-S6. By winning the senior section last year for the second successive year, Balwearie HS repeated the achievement of Lochgelly HS, winners of the title in years one and two. Once again the winners of the senior section will represent Fife at the national 7s finals organised by the Scottish FA at Ravenscraig on Wednesday 20th May.  

Welcome to Glenrothes HS players who make a welcome return to the 7s League. This will only be their second appearance after an absence of one year. A welcome return to Balwearie HS, Woodmill HS and Lochgelly HS who have been regular attendees since the first year. Hopefully in the weeks ahead we shall receive registrations from other schools that have indicated an early interest in taking part.

Special thanks again to David McArdle of the Scottish FA who continues to enthusiastically support the DSF football programme.  DSF received a grant from the Scottish FA last year to run the 7s League programme and individual schools received their own match balls. The leading goalkeeper and top scorer were also presented with Scottish FA kit following last year’s finals. David is ever present at the 7s fixtures in Fife. Thanks also to Kevin Lee, East Regional Manager of the Scottish FA who supports the DSF coach led programme. Scottish FA funding has been critical to the sustainability of the Fife led sessions.

DSF is also indebted to the Fife Referees Association and would wish to thank in particular Derek Lowe, the Area Co-ordinator. Special thanks to Alistair Watt and John Cooper who were our referees in 2014.

Kirkcaldy HS has become a major partner of DSF and we acknowledge Rector Derek Allan and Principal Teacher of PE, Malcolm Stewart, in particular.  Kirkcaldy HS pupils and staff have willingly handed over their 7s pitches during the lunch period for the past four years and agreed again to support the 2015 Series. The all weather pitches have just been resurfaced and DSF is privileged to gain access so soon after this major project was completed. DSF has strong links with Kirkcaldy HS and each year senior High School sports leaders assist with the DSF Fife events programme as volunteer officials.

Over the past two years DSF has been working closely with the Scottish FA football Development Officers based within Active Fife. Davie Honeyman and Lee Bailey have been enormously supportive in coach education and training in particular and DSF is excited about being involved in the new Fife Football Academy. Not surprisingly the Academy will be inclusive and some of the young players involved in the 7s League will be offered the chance to be part of this exciting Fife initiative.

DSF pays tribute to the schools staff who spend so much time preparing their pupils for the 7s League.  We must never underestimate the amount of time and effort it takes to prepare a team and it is a credit to all the participating schools how far we have come since the first League four years ago.  The behaviour on the field of play of every school pupil is always in keeping with the ethos of Fair Play.  It is easy to win well but it is not always easy to lose well. Good luck to all players participating in the 2015 DSF/Scottish FA 7s League.

> Click here to view photo of the 7s league
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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39th Fife Sports Festival for Disabled People

The 2015 Fife Sports Festival will begin as always with the Fife Swimming Championships on Friday 7 March at the Michael Woods Sports & Leisure Centre in Glenrothes.  The Festival will run over four weeks (entry form available in entry form section). 

- Wednesday 18 March is the date for the sixth Fife Badminton Championships at Kirkcaldy Leisure Centre.  The junior section increased again last year and we hope even more schools will support the 2015 event.

- Please note the Fife Table Tennis Championships will run on Monday 23 March at the Michael Woods Sports & Leisure Centre, Glenrothes.

- The Scottish Disability Sport national senior championships for swimmers with a physical/sensory impairment will be held on 18 April.  The date of the equivalent championships for swimmers with a learning disability has yet to be confirmed.  The Fife team will be selected from results recorded at the Fife swimming championships.

- The entry fee is £2.00 per competitor for entry into one competition only.  For entry into two or more competitions the entry fee is £4.00.  Entry fees must be paid when the entry is submitted.  This arrangement applies to all events marked A.

For events marked B participants must pay the standard weekly multi-sports session at the Michael Woods Centre.

Please note there are separate criteria for adults, schools/colleges.

- Enquiries concerning the Festival should be directed in the first instance to Norma Buchanan, Administrator, Disability Sport Fife, Michael Woods Sports & Leisure Centre, Viewfield, Glenrothes KY6 2RD (Tel. 03451 55 55 55 plus ext. 444989 or email norma.buchanan@fife.gov.uk).

> For the first time entry forms can be downloaded from the DSF website 

-The closing date for all entries is Friday 13 February 2015.


Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Happy Christmas from the Fife office

As the term draws to an end may we wish everybody associated with Disability Sport Fife a very happy Christmas. It has been a wonderful year for the Association with major successes in our key priority areas of participation, performance, coaching and volunteering. DSF is indebted to Kevin McKee in the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust Design team who has helped us to build our very successful web site this past year and consequently communicate more efficiently and effectively with a much wider audience. Keep checking the site for news, results, reports and coach education opportunities.

The new activity sessions sheet and application form is now on the web site (version 73) detailing what we have on offer weekly throughout 2015 in venues and settings throughout Fife. These sessions are critical to increasing levels of participation and welcoming new members to DSF. Sessions are successful because of the quality of coaches we can call upon and over the past year the arrival of Kay Maxwell (swimming), Gabby Doig (athletics), Dave Costello (football), Stuart Munn (athletics) and Helen MacKay (swimming) has greatly enhanced our coaching workforce and what we are able to offer weekly. Early next year we shall be looking at what we can offer weekly in carpet bowls and judo in conjunction with Judo Scotland. Also early in the New Year DSF will confirm its commitment to coaching with DIT Workshops, Boccia Leaders Award and a Classification Workshop in conjunction with SDS. More learning opportunities will be added as the year progresses.

Throughout the year the web site and newsletters have celebrated the success of individual performance athletes, players and teams. Kieran Steer for example continues to develop as a world class boccia player and Michael Simpson, Billy Allan, Martin Hunter, Maria Spencer and Barbara McMillan are off to New Zealand in February for the IBD World Bowls Championships as part of Team Scotland. Derek Rae will once again be trying to set a personal best time in the 2015 London Marathon and the Fife swimming and athletics teams will be trying to successfully defend the two national team trophies that they won for the first time in the same calendar year in 2014. The Fife Carpet Bowls team has been selected for the first Scottish Disability Sport Championships of 2015 to be held at the Dundee International Sports Centre on Saturday 31st January. The Fife Futures and Development squads are thriving as more and more young people come to our attention as athletes and players with potential. However, we never have enough members so please keep spreading the word about the positive benefits of engagement in disability sport.

DSF depends so much on the massive volunteer force that supports so many aspects of our work. Year after year, Matt Thomson and Alex McLean, the DSF bowls coordinators, gather together squads of volunteer markers from Fife clubs to run the very successful DSF indoor, outdoor and carpet bowls programme. Sports Leaders from Kirkcaldy HS turned out in significant numbers to support the DSF Swimming and Athletics Championships and in 2015, DSF hopes to extend this involvement to other Championships. For over two decades, Fiona Cunningham, Tom Foster, Colin Wilson, Margaret Robson and Jim Drummond have been stalwart volunteer officials who have travelled all over Fife to support DSF swimming galas. Parents, siblings, young people and older adults ….. too many to name individually ….. turn out week after week to support the DSF coaching workforce or turn up on a few occasions throughout the year to support DSF events. All play a very important role in the continued prosperity of Disability Sport Fife.

Spread the word……disability sport in Fife is very much alive and kicking. It will be all systems go again on the week beginning 5th January with the exception of a couple of sessions that do not start until the second week of 2015. Check the web site for details.  

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Most Successful Fife Championships to date

The 214 Disability Sport Fife (DSF) Carpet Bowls Championships held at the Michael Woods Sports Centre in Glenrothes in November were the most successful to date. There were junior bowlers from Lochgelly High School and Dunfermline High School competing for the first time and volunteer mainstream bowlers from throughout the central area of Fife officiated at 80 ties over the three and half hour tournament. There were 11 sections for bowlers with a physical, sensory or learning disability and at the end of the Championships bowlers were selected to represent Fife at the Scottish Championships, organised by Scottish Disability Sport, at the Dundee International Sports Centre on Saturday 31 January 2015.

In the senior events Scottish international bowler Billy Allan (Cowdenbeath) won the mens open section for ambulant physically disabled bowlers by defeating Stuart Chesby (Dunfermline) who was appearing in his first final. The section for wheelchair bowlers was an all Central Fife Community Support Services affair with Willie Harrison defeating Ian Green by 7 shots to 3. In the restricted mixed ambulant section, Neil Laughlin (Central Fife CSS) retained his title with a 2 shot victory over Eleanor Clark (Kirkcaldy).

In the section for players with a learning disability there were as always close ties. Wendy Thomson (East Fife CSS) replicated her lawn bowls performance of earlier in the year by winning the title with a 7 shots to 3 victory over Hayley Binnie (West Fife CSS). Robert McMahon recorded a surprise rare win over his Central Fife CSS team-mate Craig Donaldson to win the mens open title by 8 shots to 6. Kevin Mustard (Central Fife CSS) won the B competition by 10 shots to 6 against Jimmy Binnie (West Fife CSS). Craig Houston (East Fife CSS) had yet another fine competition when winning the C category event comfortably by defeating team-mate Jimmy Ramsay. The mens D competition resulted in a win for Wayne Moreland (East Fife CSS) who defeated Stuart Melville from West Fife CSS by 10 shots to 7.

All of the finalists in the junior section were from Lochgelly HS. In the S1/S2/S3 event Michaela Ross played an excellent final against Jennifer Dunn to win her first bowls title by 4 shots to 1. Lianne Morris defeated Aiden Flemming in the S2/S3 event by only 1 shot to win the title. In the S4/S5 event play off stages Stacey Hynd defeated Fraser Wilson by 5 shots to 4 but in the final the outcome was reversed, with Fraser taking the title by 4 shots to 1.

At the end of the Championships the Fife team for the Scottish Championships was selected

Willie Harrison (CFCSS), Ian Green (CFCSS), Billy Allan (Cowdenbeath), Theresa Wyse (CFCSS), Stuart Chesby (Dunfermline), Neil Laughlin (CFCSS), Eleanor Clark (Kirkcaldy), Robert McMahon (CFCSS), Craig Donaldson (CFCSS), Darryl Stewart (Cowdenbeath), Kevin Mustard (CFCSS), Gary Lindsay (EFCSS), Wendy Thomson (EFCSS), Michelle Wallace (CFCSS), Vicky Walker (CFCSS), Julie Allan (EFCSS). The junior bowlers have yet to be selected.

 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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RESULTS

Bowlers with a Physical Disability – Mixed bowlers who use a wheelchair

Winner Willie Harrison Central Community Support Services

Runner Up Ian Green Central Community Support Services

Bowlers with a Physical Disability - Male Ambulant Non Restricted bowlers

Winner Billy Allan Cowdenbeath

Runner Up Stuart Chesby Dunfermline

Bowlers with a Physical Disability - Mixed Ambulant and Visually Impaired bowlers Restricted

Winner Neil Laughlin Central Community Support Services

Runner Up Eleanor Clark Kirkcaldy

 

BOWLERS WITH A LEARNING DISABILITY

Women Open Competition

Winner Wendy Thomson East Community Support Services

Runner Up Hayley Binnie West Community Support Services

Men Open Competition

Winner Robert McMahon Central Community Support Services

Runner Up Craig Donaldson Central Community Support Services

Men B Competition

Winner Kevin Mustard East Community Support Services

Runner Up Jimmy Binnie West Community Support Services

Men C Competition

Winner Craig Houston East Community Support Services

Runner Up Jimmy Ramsay East Community Support Services

Men D Competition

Winner Wayne Moreland East Community Support Services

Runner Up Stuart Melville West Community Support Services

JUNIOR BOWLERS

Mixed Bowlers with a Physical Disability / Learning Disability – S1/S2/S3
Winner Michaela Ross Lochgelly HS

Runner Up Jennifer Dunn Lochgelly HS

Mixed Bowlers with a Learning Disability – S2/S3
Winner Lianne Morris Lochgelly HS

Runner Up Aiden Flemming Lochgelly HS

Mixed Bowlers with a Learning Disability – S4/S5
Winner Fraser Wilson Lochgelly HS

Runner Up Stacey Hynd Lochgelly HS


Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife swimmers make significant contribution

The British Gas Short Course Disability Swimming Championships were held at Manchester Aquatic Centre over the weekend of 22/23 November and for the first time the championships were a combined junior and senior event.

There were 6 Disability Sport Fife high performance swimmers in the strong Scottish team. Commonwealth Games Para sport swimmer Craig Rodgie from Dalgety Bay, and the Edinburgh University Swim Team was again in record breaking form when he regained the Scottish record for S14 100m Freestyle in a time of 56.74. Lucy Walkup, now based at Stirling University, won gold in her favoured 100m breaststroke and during the Championships she was named in the GB team for the World Deaf championships in San Antonio, Texas in 2015. Yet another wonderful representative honour for the Fife swimmer.

Stefan Hoggan from Auchtermuchty was appearing for the final time at the Championships, following ten years of significant contributions to the Scottish team.

Stefan signed off by winning gold in S9 100m butterfly and a further two silver medals.

Oliver Carter from Cupar and District SC was voted leading junior at the recent junior Scottish Championships and in Manchester in his age group he won two silver and one bronze medal.

Craig Smith from FINS won an age group bronze medal in 400m Freestyle, and on his debut for Team Scotland, Steven McCormick from FINS won two bronze medals and swam major personal best times.

The six young Fife swimmers helped the Scottish team to an excellent championships winning performance in the team event. Scotland won the Team Trophy for the first time in a decade and Stefan Hoggan was selected to collect it on behalf of the team. A fitting tribute for years of service to Team Scotland. Stefan is currently reviewing his sport options for the future.

Photo: Stefan Hoggan
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Big Lottery support for learning in Fife

Glenrothes HS Department for pupils with additional support needs is the latest Disability Sport Fife member organisation to receive badminton equipment as part of the Big Lottery funded “supporting learning with equipment” project. The project involves teachers attending badminton workshops organised by DSF and tutored by Jane Russell of Badminton Scotland. The project is also supported by Yonex.

The two hour workshop offers participants advice on how to deliver basic badminton coaching in an appropriate, purposeful, enjoyable and safe environment. As well as looking at fun games and drills the participants are introduced to the basic rules of the sport. It is hoped that the training will result in an increased entry at the Disability Sport Fife badminton championships at the Kirkcaldy Leisure Centre in March 2015.

Louise Taylor from the Physical Education Department received the Glenrothes High School badminton bag on a recent visit to the Michael Woods Sports and Leisure Centre.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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DSF signs up another new coach

The Disability Sport Fife coaching workforce continues to expand with the appointment of Gabby Doig as an athletics coach at the Tuesday twilight session at the Pitreavie Athletics Centre. Gabby works at Balwearie HS DAS along with the present Tuesday session coach Pamela Robson.

Gabby like Pamela is a qualified Scottish Athletics coach and totally committed to the sport. DSF is delighted that Gabby has accepted the DSF invitation to join the workforce after several years engagement in the DSF events programme in support of Balwearie HS athletes and players.

Over the past couple of months DSF has engaged Madras College teacher Stuart Munn to lead the athletics session in St Andrews. Scottish Football coach Dave Costello joined the team this month to lead a new junior football session in Kirkcaldy funded by Scottish Football. DSF is indebted to Madras College and Balwearie HS for supporting these two sessions. The quality and quantity of DSF coaches has never been stronger and the beneficiaries are undoubtedly athletes and players with a physical, sensory or learning disability in Fife. 

 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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A very special athletics partnership

Seated throwing requires the right equipment and an initiative involving Disability Sport Fife (DSF), Scottish Athletics, REMAP and the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust will make a difference to Fife disabled athletes. For the first time non ambulant throwers will have the opportunity to train and compete in field events using bespoke throwing frames located at Pitreavie and the Michael Woods Sports and Leisure Centre.

REMAP is a charity that designs and produces technical aids for disabled people. When approached by Disability Sport Fife, David Reid of REMAP Scotland, called upon the services of REMAP volunteers in the west of Scotland to design and manufacture a portable frame to the specifications outlined by DSF and Scottish Athletics. After several months of discussions and debate the design was agreed, the frames manufactured and delivered to Fife.

One of the first beneficiaries is Jonny Brown from Thornton. Jonny has already enjoyed considerable success in competitions throwing from his sports wheelchair. The new frame will offer him increased mobility, independence and a new found freedom of movement. The frame can be adjusted for left and right handed throwers and the holding bar may be set to meet individual athlete preferences. The frame is compact, easily transported and undoubtedly fit for purpose. This new design will offer athletes with mobility challenges of all levels of ability the opportunity to experience, enjoy and progress in field events.



The Fife Sports and Leisure Trust immediately agreed to accommodate the new frames at the athletics tracks in Dunfermline and Glenrothes. The addition of two training bases in Fife will not only grow the sport but offer disabled participants with restricted mobility and performance potential, the opportunity to train in two different locations.

Representatives from the partners attended Jonny Brown’s first training session using the Pitreavie Athletics Centre based throwing frame and share his delight at being able to throw more freely in the purpose built frame. Jonny has aspirations of progressing in disability athletics and maybe one day representing his country. Jonny’s Dad David has been a volunteer with DSF for several years and early in 2015 he will be attending his first Scottish Athletics coaching course on his way to becoming a fully qualified athletics coach.

Photo: L to R - Richard Brickley President Disability Sport Fife, John Convery and Robert McShane REMAP, Jonny Brown athlete, Shona Malcolm Scottish Athletics, David Brown DSF volunteer and Scott Urquhart Fife Sports and Leisure Trust.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Sad News

Disability Sport Fife has learned of the loss of two dear friends within the past few days.

Elma Pirie, wife of the late Bernard Pirie passed away last week. Bernard will always be remembered as one of our longest serving volunteers. His influence on the sports of swimming and ten pin bowling is immeasurable. Elma was rarely if ever absent when Bernard was leading from the front. Elma, like Bernard was a very experienced and competent swimming official and a key member of the team that travelled around Fife in support of DSF galas. The Pirie family set a high standard in volunteering and their contribution to disability sport in Fife can never be underestimated. A service for Elma will be held at the crematorium in Kirkcaldy on Friday 28th November at 12 45. The thoughts of all of us in DSF are with Elma’s daughters at this sad time.

DSF has also learned of the passing of Steven Harper, husband of the late Aileen Harper. Aileen is in the DSF Hall of Fame and recognised as one of DSF’s leading athletes of all time. Aileen’s daughters were present at the 2014 AGM and presented trophies in memory of their late mother. Steven was very proud of all that Aileen achieved in sport and was a very accomplished athlete himself. As a member of the Red Cross he worked closely with the late Alec Thorburn and together they contributed many voluntary hours in support of DSF events. Steven also encouraged and supported others who spent their leisure time looking after the health and welfare of others. The service for Steven will be held at Kirkcaldy crematorium on Wednesday 26th November at 11 00.

Photo: Bernard and Elma Pirie at an earlier DSF AGM and Awards evening.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Disability Inclusion Training Workshop

Scottish Disability Sport, in conjunction with Home Country Disability Sports Organisations, has developed a UK Disability Inclusion Training (UKDIT) workshop aimed at early years practitioners, primary teachers, primary specialist PE teachers, secondary PE teachers and trainee PE teachers who are interested in being involved in sport for participants with a physical, sensory or learning disability.

This 6 hour workshop, run over two early evening twilight sessions, includes a mix of theory and practical delivery to encourage delegates to positively include participants with a disability in physical activity including sport. This workshop is the most recent in a series of twilight and full day workshops organised in Fife during 2013 and 2014. The workshop is fully aligned to the Curriculum for Excellence.

The theory element of the course addresses issues such as communication, impairment, terminology, inclusion models, legislation and sport specific issues. The practical sports hall based section deals with the Sports Inclusion Model (SIM) and STEPS in a variety of different settings including warm ups, fun games, core skills and team sports. All DIT tutors have extensive experience of working in disability sport and possess nationally recognised tutor qualifications.

Dates and times: Tuesday 3rd and Tuesday 10th February 2015 16 00 to 19 00

Venue: Auchmuty High School

Tutors: Heather Lowden and Richard Brickley

Applicants who work in Education Services may enroll in the usual manner for CPD courses and workshops. The course tutors will consider but not guarantee places for applicants who are not employed within Education Services but endorsed by Disability Sport Fife. For further details please contact Norma Buchanan Administrator DSF norma.buchanan@fife.gov.uk.


Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife Disability Badminton Development

Disability Sport Fife (DSF) successfully secured a grant from the Big Lottery to provide equipment for schools and clubs signed up to the DSF Badminton Workshop programme. “Providing equipment in support of learning” has been running for a matter of months and already three workshops have been held in west and central Fife for professional staff and volunteers who work with children, young people and adults with physical sensory and learning disabilities. A full programme of workshops is planned for 2015.

Working with Badminton Scotland and with support from Yonex, DSF has been able to provide equipment for organisations that send 5 or more staff to the DSF workshops. Workshop tutor Jane Russell of Badminton Scotland introduces the learners to the basics of badminton coaching with a specific emphasis on participants with additional learning needs. Warm up, basics skills, fun games and rules are covered during each two hour workshop. Participants are offered the opportunity to experience playing badminton in a wheelchair.



Due to the influence of the late Russell Hogg from Dunfermline, badminton is now a priority sport for Disability Sport Fife. There is also added interest in Para-badminton with the recent announcement that badminton will be included in the Paralympic Games in Tokyo In 2020.  The new equipment made available to DSF member organisations will help enormously to promote the game.

Balwearie HS Department for pupils with additional support needs is the latest school to receive their equipment bag. Jane Russell from Badminton Scotland travelled to Kirkcaldy to hand over a bag to staff member Pamela Robson and staff who have attended a workshop and pupils who will make use of the new equipment.

Photo: Jane Russell extreme right hands over to Pamela Robson centre of picture.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Balwearie HS 2014 Champions

One of the most popular team events in the annual calendar promoted by Disability Sport Fife (DSF) is the Inter Schools Swimming Gala held annually at Lochgelly HS. The gala has added significance because the Fife team for the Scottish Junior Championships is selected from the results recorded by participating swimmers. The 2014 champions are Balwearie HS but unfortunately the winners trophy was not presented at the gala because mysteriously it had gone missing.

Julie Hogg, Trustee of the Russell Hogg Trust was present at the gala and heard about the missing trophy. Immediately Julie suggested an application to the Trust and DSF duly obliged. The outcome was the purchase and delivery of the new Russell Hogg Inter Schools Trophy for swimmers with additional support needs.



Julie was scheduled to present the new trophy to the Balwearie HS pupils at Friday morning assembly but sadly because of illness she could not attend. Richard Brickley President of Disability Sport Fife handed over the trophy to the swimmers and Balwearie HS staff member Pamela Robson.

International badminton player Russell Hogg came from Dunfermline and sadly past away at a very young age following a lengthy illness. Russell was a legend in the sport of badminton and represented his country at every level of the sport. After working with Badminton Scotland, Russell moved to Scottish Disability Sport and greatly influenced the development of Para- badminton in Scotland, including Fife. The name of Russell Hogg now appears on the two major junior team trophies for pupils with additional support needs in Fife. DSF is determined that this great Scot will always be remembered for the major contribution he has made to mainstream and disability sport in Scotland as a player, coach and development officer.

Photo: Pamela Robson Balwearie HS and Richard Brickley DSF with some of the Balwearie HS swimmers at Friday Assembly.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Strong Fife Junior Team performances

Disability Sport Fife selected a strong team of junior swimmers with a learning disability for the 2014 Scottish Junior Swimming Championships organised by Scottish Disability Sport at Tollcross pool in Glasgow. The Championships involve a system of classification based on time banding with swimmers competing against opponents of similar ability over 25, 50 and 100 metres in different strokes. The Fife team was selected from results recorded at galas held in Cupar pool and Lochgelly HS earlier in the year.

Briony Clark from Glenrothes was the leading girl in the Fife team with a win in 50 metres backstroke and runners up medals in 100 metres freestyle, individual medley and breast stroke. Joyce Law and Holly Jane Gray from Madras College won national titles in breast stroke and freestyle respectively. Jennifer Paton from Balwearie HS was also in fine form with medals in breast stroke and back stroke. Other girls who finished in top three positions were Rachel Smart Woodmill HS, Chelsea O’Donnell Lochgelly HS, Iona MacFadzean Glenrothes HS, Rosalind Penman Madras College and Danielle Anderson Madras College.

National titles were also won by Ross Morton and Sean Wright from Balwearie HS plus Reece Martin from Lochgelly HS. Fraser Wilson Lochgelly HS, Benjamin Jamieson Woodmill HS, Daniel Henderson Glenrothes HS and Connor Greer from Balwearie HS collected runners up medals across a range of distances and strokes.

Yet another fine series of performances by DSF members at a national championships organised by Disability Sport Fife.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife athletes in form in Edinburgh

Over 50 runners participated in Series 2 of the East Cross Country championships organised by Scottish Disability Sport and Scottish Athletics at Heriot Watt, Riccarton Campus on Wednesday 19 November. Athletes from schools in Lothian and Fife took part in one of the most popular events in the autumn/winter calendar available to Disability Sport Fife (DSF) members. Pupils with additional support needs from Lochgelly HS, Balwearie HS, Woodmill HS and Bell Baxter HS represented Fife in the second of four Series of races.

The winner of the S1 girls 1Km race was Megan Wilson (Woodmill HS) and in the equivalent race for S2 pupils first place went to the ever improving Kerry Kotlewski (Bell Baxter HS). Chloe McCallum (Balwearie HS) finished third. DSF members made it three wins in a row when Alex Syme (Woodmill HS) won the S3 race and Leigh-Anna Fleming (Lochgelly HS) finished second. Team Fife rounded off an excellent start to Series 2 when Marie Wilson (Lochgelly HS) won the S4-S6 1Km race and Leigh-Anne MacDonald (Balwearie HS) finished second. Taylor McDowall (Balwearie HS) completed a clean sweep for Fife by finishing third.

Connor Brown (Woodmill HS) got the boys off to the best of starts with a win in the S1 1Km race. John Johnston from Woodmill HS finished in third place and Robert Sellstrom (Balwearie HS) finished second in the S2 boys 1Km. There was a another Fife clean sweep in the S3 1Km event when Reece Dickson (Balwearie HS) finished first, Shane White (Bell Baxter HS) finished second and Dean Bruce (Bell Baxter HS) finished third. The boys rounded off a great series of results over the shorter distance when Issac Fraser and Liam McCrossan (both Balwearie HS) finished second and third respectively in the S4-S6 race.

Attention then turned to races over 2k and 3k and the excellent form of the Fife athletes continued. Casey Donaldson (Woodmill HS) won the S2 2Km race with Alex Evans (Balwearie HS) finishing second. A third place finish for Dylan Fotheringham (Balwearie HS) in the S4-S6 event set the scene for the longest race of the Series over 3Km and yet again Fife athletes did not disappoint. Ryan Dunwoodie (Balwearie HS) covered the course in 12:46 to take second place and continue his excellent record over the past five years as a cross country runner. The outstanding athlete once again was S4 Bell Baxter HS pupil Sam Fernando. Sam is a member of Fife AC and has been the outstanding DSF junior distance athlete for the last few years. Sam covered the 3Km course in 11:19 for a second successive win of the year in the East Series and another 10 points towards his overall Series total.

Another excellent day for Team Fife in the East Series of cross country races. Most schools in Fife for pupils with additional support needs promote cross country over the autumn and winter terms. The 2014 results in the East Series so far confirm that Fife has a significant number of athletes challenging for overall series titles.

Photo: Owen Miller, Derek Rae and Sam Fernando – DSF’s leading athletes in 2014.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife Carpet Bowls Championships

Almost 50 bowlers from throughout Fife have registered for the 2014 Disability Sport Fife (DSF) Carpet Bowls Championships to be held at the Michael Woods Sports & Leisure Centre on Wednesday 26 November. The Championships are supported by the Fife Sports & Leisure Trust and as always volunteer from local bowling clubs turn out in significant numbers from local bowling clubs to assist with the running of the Championships. The Championships are also the Fife qualifying tournament for the 2015 Scottish Championships to be organised by Scottish Disability Sport at Dundee International Sports Centre on the last Saturday January 31st.

DSF has a long history of success at the National Championships and two of the country’s leading bowlers with a learning disability will once again come head to head on the short carpet. Craig Donaldson from Kinghorn/Central Fife CSS and Darryl Stewart from Cowdenbeath have an outstanding track record in indoor, lawn and carpet bowls championships at local and national level. Invariably this pair contests the final of the open section but this year no doubt Robert McMahon and Gary Handyside will be challenging hard to win one of the two finalist places.

For the first time in many years five wheelchair bowlers are entered for the championships and international lawn bowler Billy Allan, who was part of Scotland’s physically disabled triple at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, will be determined to win the men’s open title. Wendy Thomson from St Andrews and East Fife CSS is the reigning Scottish lawn bowls champion, a title she won for the first time in Aberdeen during the summer. Wendy is determined to add the national carpet bowls title to her list of achievements and rarely has a bowler completed the double in any single sporting year.

By far one of the most exciting developments in this year’s championships is the appearance of 12 junior bowlers. 

Photo: Craig Donaldson in action

 

This is the first time there has been a junior entry and there will be three mixed sections on the 2014 programme. There will be an S1 section, an S2/3 section and an S4/5 section. Well done to Lochgelly High School and Dunfermline High School for being the first schools ever to enter junior bowlers for the DSF Carpet Bowls Championships.

As always DSF bowls convenors Matt Thomson from Kirkcaldy will be working hard to ensure that the bowlers enjoy the occasion immensely and the officiating is of the highest quality. Eight short carpets will be in operation at the Michael Woods Centre and the 11 individual sections will be contested in the spirit of fair play and friendship. DSF is indebted to Active Fife for financially supporting the purchase of two new carpets in the last year to promote bowls development in east and west Fife.

 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Scottish Disabled Sports Trust (SDST)

The Trust was set up on May 15th 1987 by the late Bob Mitchell, past chairman of Scottish Disability Sport and a major influence on successive generations of athletes, coaches, administrators and volunteers involved in disability sport in Scotland. The SDST was established in the year of the very successful SDS Silver Jubilee celebrations and since then has supported individuals and organisations committed to the same ethos, values and aims as Bob Mitchell and his fellow Trustees, past and present.

Bob passed away at the time of the Beijing Paralympic Games and not surprisingly the Trust has benefitted from allocated funds in the estate of the great man. The present Trustees are determined to ensure that successful Trust applications meet with the approval of Bob and his fellow Trustees of the past 30 years.

As a guide to potential participants the following information is critical:

  • To provide financial support to participants with a physical, sensory or learning disability and to assist them to achieve their full potential in sport. 
  • Applications for a Scottish Disabled Sports Trust grant will be considered from individuals or groups and may be used to meet the costs of training, travel to events or the purchase of equipment necessary to achieve excellence in a specific sport.
  • Preference will be given to individuals who are involved in performance sport and have the potential to represent their country in high performance sport.

An SDST Grant Application form is available on the SDS and some Branch web sites.

LINK to the SDST grant application form in pdf. Contact Norma Buchanan in the Fife office of SDS/DSF office for an application form in WORD. Norma.buchanan@fife.gov.uk

Prepared by the SDST Trustees

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Strong Fife Junior Team

A strong Fife team of junior swimmers with a learning disability will head to Glasgow on Wednesday 19th November for the 37th Junior Championships for swimmers with a learning disability organised by Scottish Disability Sport (SDS). The first Championships were held in 1976 at the Fife Sports Institute in Glenrothes, moving thereafter to Dundee and Whitburn before settling in Glasgow at the Tollcross Leisure Centre. The young swimmers are delighted to compete in the well restored Tollcross International Swimming Centre, out of action for the past two years due to the small matter of the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games! It will be an experience for Fife’s young swimmers to compete in such an impressive arena and undoubtedly it will inspire outstanding performances. The Junior Championships are one of the longest running in the national calendar organised by SDS.

In the past current GB internationals represented their Branch junior teams with distinction. One such swimmer was Craig Rodgie from Fife who this year represented Team Scotland at the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games where he swam in the final of the S14 200m Freestyle and finished a very respectable 5th place. Another of Scotland’s great S14 swimmers is Scott Quin from Lothian who won a silver medal in the 100m Breaststroke SB14 at the IPC European Championships in Eindhoven in August. Scott and Craig were great supporters of the junior championships and continue to be an excellent ambassador for SDS and Scottish Swimming.


It is extremely exciting for all involved in swimming that the IPC World Swimming Championships will take place in 2015 at this venue between 13 – 19 July. Make a note for your diary and if you would like to volunteer at this event please consult the SDS website for more information.

These championships have witnessed memorable battles over the years as young swimmers with potential are offered high quality competition against their peers. The championships provide a check on swimmer progress and development, with many swimmers who make their mark at these championships going on to perform with distinction on the national and international stage. This year should be no different with some of the swimmers present today representing Scotland at the upcoming British Gas Open Short Course Championships in Manchester at the end of November.

347 swimmers have registered for the Championships of 2014. SDS is indebted to the many local organisers who have been responsible for organising local championships, selecting teams and arranging transport for teams to travel to Glasgow. SDS and its constituent Branches are focused on encouraging children and young people with a physical, sensory or learning disability to learn to swim, join a club or sessions and perhaps thereafter follow in the footsteps of Scotland’s great Para-Sport swimmers. Scotland has an excellent track record of producing outstanding swimmers and many have competed with distinction in major championships all over the world.

The Fife team will comprise of swimmers from Balwearie HS, Woodmill HS, Lochgelly HS, Glenrothes HS, Bell Baxter HS, Madras College and Kilmaron School. DSF wishes every swimmer success at this year’s championship. DSF encourages each swimmer to embrace the occasion and strive for their best whilst appreciating the many aspects of sportsmanship and fair play associated with this event. The commitment to continual improvement from Fife junior swimmers is extremely impressive and consistently reinforces their dedication to their chosen sport.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Perth 2014 – an inspired Branch Conference

The 2014 Scottish Disability Sport Branch Conference was held on Sunday 16th November at Dewar’s Centre in Perth. Delegates from all of Scotland’s Branches in membership attended, including Disability Sport Fife.

The welcome, introduction and scene-setting were competently delivered by Conference coordinator Mark Gaffney, SDS Events manager. Mark was followed by the new Chairperson of SD, Janice Eaglesham who provided a resume of the year past including the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, with specific reference to Para- Sport athletes. From the athlete’s perspective, Jo Butterfield– IPC European Gold Medallist & European Record Holder - was interviewed by Gavin McLeod, CEO Scottish Disability Sport, about her spectacular sporting year.

Five SDS Branches, including Fife, presented case studies of recent branch activity and examples of good practice. Richard Brickley, President of DSF delivered five 25 minute workshops on the success of DSF over the past two years, particularly in the areas of communication and partnership working. Richard highlighted specifically the very strong partnerships that exist with Fife Council and the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust and singled out Active Fife, Education and Social Work Services in particular for special mention. The new DSF web site hosted by the Leisure Trust has been one of the major successes of the year. Links with the voluntary sector are stronger than ever and Scottish Governing Bodies of Sport such as Scottish Football and Scottish Athletics have been particularly supportive. Richard emphasised the importance of getting the “who”, “how” and “what” right when it comes to effective communication and strong partnerships.

Two Interactive Workshops  followed on PVG update and grants and funding led by Ann Ferguson, Volunteer Scotland and Andy Kelly, Sportscotland. There then followed an interesting report on the Blaze Sports Cultural Exchange Trip to the USA where DSF member Stefan Hoggan played an important role. A chance in a lifetime opportunity enjoyed by a number of young Scots in places such Alabama and Washington DC. Following an events update by Mark Gaffney and a round up by the Chairperson, delegates sat down to a well earned lunch.

Throughout the day it was emphasised how important Branches are to the development of disability sport in Scotland. The Branch Conference is the only time when area delegates get together to debate issues of mutual interest. SDS staff facilitated something very special this year and all delegates left Perth feeling valued, inspired and more knowledgeable. As well as the President, DSF was represented by Chairman Paul Noble and General Management Committee members Adam Morley and Anna Tizzard.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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St Columba's pupils raise £3000

PUPILS at St Columba’s High raised £3000 for the Russell Hogg Trust in a competition learning about social issues in the community.

The second-year students have been working closely with the Youth and Philanthropy Initiative (YPI) during RE and SHE classes.

In teams, the pupils chose a local charity and researched different social issues surrounding it including child poverty, homelessness, domestic abuse, disability and caring for the elderly.

After researching they presented their findings to their class in a semi-final competition and six teams advanced to the finals night last Tuesday where the team researching disability sports called SportATeam won the £3000.

The money given to them by the Wood Family Trust, which maintains YPI, will go to the Russell Hogg Trust, which aims to encourage participation and provide financial support for international athletes in badminton and disability sport, in memory of the former West Fife badminton star.

Ruairi Mulholland, principal teacher of RE and citizenship said, “In classes we have been talking about lots of different social issues in class.

“We have been working with YPI since June and it has been a great experience.

“The pupils have learned some fantastic life skills such as presenting, researching and citizenship skills which will cross over into other subjects.”

Article courtesy of the Dunfermline Press.

Photo: Julie Hogg wife of the late Russell Hogg and Bill Hogg Russell’s brother with St Columba’s pupils
 


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The Best Fife Juniors in Years

The Disability Sport Fife Junior physically disabled swim team exceeded all expectations at the thirty-seventh Junior Championships for sensory impaired and physically disabled swimmers, organised by Scottish Disability Sport (SDS) at Grangemouth Sports Complex. Every member of the ten strong Fife squad had at least one top two finish and almost every swimmer won at least one national title. Six swimmers were appearing in their first national championships and all were well supported by the more experienced squad members. Cooperative working between DSF, the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust and Fife’s swimming clubs is beginning to pay off in a big way. Swimmers from Carnegie SC, FINS, INCAS and Cupar and District SC joined young swimmers from the DSF coach led sessions in Glenrothes to record the best results by a Fife junior squad in many years.

Kerys Ballard from Dulloch Primary competed alongside her Carnegie SC team mate Ruairidh Dumper from Carnegie Primary in their first championships. Newcomer Cara Smyth from Inverkeithing HS and Incas was inspired by the swims of Para sport swimmer Erraid Davies at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow and subsequently approached DSF. The result was a swim for Fife in her first Scottish Junior Championships. FINS swimmers Craig Smith from Glenrothes HS and Steven McCormick from Viewforth HS were in fine form at the 2014 Championships and leading from the front as two of the most experienced squad members. Four of the youngest team members, Sarah Fraser from Denend PS, Logan Harley Rimbleton PS, Cameron Hemphill Ladybank PS and Harley Wylie from Carleton PS recorded numerous best performances and confirmed that they have promising swimming careers ahead. The icing on the cake for the Fife squad was finding out at the end of the gala that Oliver Carter from Bell Baxter HS and Cupar and District SC had been voted leading male swimmer of the championships. The youngsters are already looking forward to the Fife Championships organized by DSF in Glenrothes on Friday 6th March 2015.

Disability Sport Fife is focused on encouraging more children and young people with a physical, sensory or learning disability to learn to swim, join a club or DSF session and potentially follow in the footsteps of Fife’s great Para-sports swimmers of the past. Junior swimmers Oliver Carter, Craig Smith and Steven McCormick will join up with Fife seniors Craig Rodgie, Lucy Walkup and Stefan Hoggan as members of Team Scotland for the British Gas Open Short Course Championships in Manchester at the end of November.

Photo - Team Fife captain Craig Smith - FINS

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Team Scotland Selected for New Zealand

Scottish Disability Sport has selected the players and support staff for the Scotland Bowls Team that will compete in the IBD World Championships to be held at the Lower Hutt and NaeNae Bowling Clubs in Wellington, New Zealand from 17-27 February 2015. Five players and four support staff from Fife have been selected for the nineteen strong squad.

The team comprises of four visually impaired/blind bowlers who will compete in class B2 and B3 events and eight physically disabled bowlers who will compete in class B6, B7 and B8 events. Team Scotland is aiming to maintain its position as one of the leading disability bowls nations in the world following a runners up finish in the team competition at the IBD World Championships in South Africa in 2011.

Highly respected and experienced Bob Dick from Cupar has once again been appointed Head Coach. On this occasion he will be supported by two assistant coaches from Fife, Celia Smith and Eric MacMillan, plus Sarah Jane Ewing who will support the visually impaired bowlers as a director. Bob led the team at Glasgow 2014 and to South Africa in 2011 and Australia four years earlier.



Disability Sport Fife is well represented in the Scottish Team for 2015. Billy Allan, Barbara McMillan, Michael Simpson and Maria Spencer have all been involved in previous IBD World Championships but for Martin Hunter from Burntisland this will be his first major international overseas. This is a fitting reward for winning the Fife and Scottish singles titles and having such a successful season with his own mainstream bowling club. Michael and Maria were IBD World Championships medalists in South Africa four years ago.

Scotland's leading performance bowlers have prepared well for the Championships.  Last year they recorded excellent results at the 2014 Commonwealth Games, securing a wonderful silver medal in the visually impaired mixed pairs and a fourth place finish in the physically disabled triples. The summer previous to G2014 Team Scotland excelled at Kelvingrove in the Home Nations Championships and the 8 Nations International Tournament.

 The Scottish team that will compete in singles and mixed pairs at the IBD World Championships is as follows:

The players are:

Billy Allan (Cowdenbeath, Fife)
Gary Clelland (Linlithgow)
Martin Hunter (Burntisland, Fife)
Michael Simpson (Auchtermuchty, Fife)
Garry Brown (Kirkmuirhill)
John Hughes (Stewarton)
Rosemary Lenton (Dumfries)
Barbara MacMillan (Cowdenbeath, Fife)
Irene Edgar (Saltcoats)
Billy Edgar (Saltcoats)
Maria Spencer (Dunfermline, Fife)
Harry Harris (Larbert)

Support staff:

Bob Dick, Fife – Head Coach
Ron McArthur – Assistant Coach/Director
Celia Smith, Fife – Assistant Coach
Eric MacMillan, Fife – Assistant Coach
David Thomas – Director
Grace Whitton – Director
Sarah Jane Ewing, Fife – Director
 

Photo: Billy Allan kneeling and Michael Simpson standing.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Coach Education Update

Working with Scottish Disability Sport, Education Scotland, Badminton Scotland, Fife Council and the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust, Disability Sport Fife has prepared an interesting programme of coach education and training for the end of the current year and early part of 2015.

In November this year a Pool workshop will be held at Lochgelly HS for candidates wishing to introduce movement in the water for children, young people and adults with physical, sensory or learning disabilities. This particular workshop has been running in Fife for a decade and once again is over subscribed. Also this month there will be the third in a series of workshops aimed at introducing badminton to learners with disabilities. Thanks to support from the Big Lottery, agencies that support this workshop in significant numbers will be presented with a bag of equipment.

On 3rd and 10th Feb February 2015 there will be another in the series of Disability Inclusion Training Twilight Courses for teachers and significant others who deliver physical activity including sport to children and young people with disabilities. On Wednesday 11th February, Fife will once again host a boccia Leaders Course at the Michael Woods Sports and Leisure Centre and two weeks earlier at the same venue, Fife will once again host a national classification course for those interested in finding out more about classification and disability sport.

Further details on all of the above are available by contacting the Disability Sport Fife Administrator Norma Buchanan – norma.buchanan@fife.gov.uk Telephone: 03451 555 555 ext. 444989. Alternatively visit DSF on line www.fifeleisure.org.uk  (find us in the Health and Well Being section) flyers on all of the workshops are available in the coach education section.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife Junior Swimmers Heading for Grangemouth

The thirty-seventh Junior Championships for sensory impaired and physically disabled swimmers, organised by Scottish Disability Sport (SDS), will be held at Grangemouth Sports Complex in November. The first Championships were held in 1976 at the Fife Sports Institute in Glenrothes moving thereafter to Dundee and Bishopbriggs before settling at their present location. The Junior Swimming Championships are one of the longest running events in the national calendar organised by SDS.

The Junior Championships have witnessed memorable contests over the years between emerging and established Scottish “juniors”. SDS and partner Scottish Swimming produce the ideal environment for quality competition and the youngsters respond by producing top quality swims. Progress and development between juniors can be charted and many swimmers who make their mark at the Championships go on to perform with distinction on the GB and international stage. This year will be no different because a large number of swimmers will be representing Scotland at the forthcoming British Gas Open Short Course Championships in Manchester at the end of November. Originally five young swimmers from Fife were selected for Team Scotland but the number has risen by one since the late call up of the Fife junior swim captain, Craig Smith from FINS.

Disability Sport Fife has ten junior physically disabled swimmers entered for the 2014 Scottish Championships, almost twice as many as last year. Great servants like Lucy Walkup from Glenrothes and Fraser Wilson from Cupar have moved on to universities in Stirling and Aberdeen and no longer meet the age criteria. Six newcomers join Team Fife as a consequence of the strong partnerships that DSF has developed with Fife swimming clubs and the discrete learn to swim and coach led sessions promoted by the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust.

Kerys Ballard from Dulloch Primary will be joined by fellow Carnegie SC member Ruairidh Dumper from Carnegie Primary who will be competing in his first championships. Cara Smyth from Inverkeithing HS and Incas will also be competing in her first championships, having been inspired by Para sport swimming at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow. Ollie Carter from Bell Baxter HS and Cupar and District SC is now one of the most experienced of Fife’s young physically disabled swimmers and he will be joined in the Fife team by his Scottish team mates from FINS, Craig Smith from Glenrothes HS and Steven McCormick from Viewforth HS. Four fast improving young Primary pupils complete the Fife team and they are Sarah Fraser from Denend PS, Logan Harley Rimbleton PS, Cameron Hemphill Ladybank PS and Harley Wylie from Carleton PS.

Disability Sport Fife is focused on encouraging more children and young people with a physical, sensory or learning disability to learn to swim, join a club or session and potentially follow in the footsteps of Fife’s great Para-sports swimmers. Andrew Lindsay was the last physically disabled swimmer from Fife to represent GB and following an undefeated ten year winning run in 100 metres backstroke in his class, Andrew retired after the Beijing Paralympic Games in 2008. Craig Rodgie from Dalgety Bay flew the Fife flag at the Paralympic Games in London in 2012 in the class for swimmers with a learning disability and Lucy walkup from Glenrothes recently competed in her first Deaflympics in Bulgaria and is now an established GB international. Perhaps one of the ten young physically disabled swimmers travelling to Grangemouth this year will succeed Andrew and Paul Noble, Iain Matthew, Lara Ferguson, Maxwell McKay and William McQueen who flew the GB flag with great distinction in swimming.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Congratulations

All of us in DSF offer our sincere congratulations and best wishes to Derek Rae and his wife Susan who were married recently.



Well done to their club colleagues in the Anster Haddies who formed a surprise guard of honour when the service was finished. You will search far and wide to find two more popular athletes on the Fife circuit.

 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Young Fife Swimmer Selected for Scotland

Five young Para sport performance swimmers have been selected by Scottish Swimming to compete in the British Championships in Manchester next month. 13 year old Steven McCormick from Kirkcaldy has cerebral palsy and is the youngest of the selected Fife swimmers. These will be his first British Championships. Steven is the latest in a long line of outstanding Fife performance swimmers to be selected for the national team.

Steven’s introduction to performance swimming fits a model that can be described as “perfection”. Steven was introduced to swimming six years ago by his sporting father Robert and it was not long before he signed up with his local swimming club FINS. To this day Steven is he greatly influenced by Head Coach Ian Lewis and his team.

Disability Sport Fife (DSF) has strong ties with NHS Fife Physiotherapist Joyce Cummings and her colleagues and it was Joyce who directed Steven to DSF and consequently opened up a parallel sporting pathway for the youngster in disability swimming. 

Fife Sports and Leisure Trust sessions with Kathy Bijak and subsequently Anna Tizzard in Glenrothes ensured the youngster had access to the most appropriate training and competition schedule on the journey to his first Team Scotland selection.

Since joining Disability Sport Fife Steven has made a significant impact in swimming and more recently he has joined the Monday DSF badminton session in Glenrothes. This is a smart move by the young Viewforth HS pupil now that Para badminton has been added to the programme for the Paralympic Games in Tokyo in 2020. For the moment however swimming is Steven’s main sport and in backstroke and freestyle in particular he is showing great promise.

Photo: Steven McCormick
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife Families Support DSF

Families play an important role in supporting the vision of Disability Sport Fife (DSF) to provide more activities, more often across Fife for more participants throughout the sporting year. Family members play a major transport role in ensuring participants attend activity sessions and events and often play a support role in water, games hall or track in support of the DSF appointed sports coach. Some family members offer their services as volunteer officials, team support personnel and even embark on a sport specific coach education pathway. Since its inception in 1977 DSF has enjoyed enormous support from the families of many individual participants.

Recently a number of families have independently decided to raise funds for DSF to support the DSF events programme or weekly sport specific sessions. The Wilson family decided to encourage their friends to donate to DSF rather than offer them an anniversary present and the Sloan, Law, Miller, Robertson and Wylie families successfully secured sponsors and supporters for their 10K and half marathon runs. The parents of the youngest member of the DSF Performance Futures squad, Steven McCormick, are the latest to successfully embark on a sponsored fund raising challenge on behalf of DSF.



Robert and Fiona McCormick from Kirkcaldy, plus Fiona’s sister Lynette Gillespie, completed the West Highland Way over five days in July raising a staggering £1250 for DSF. Averaging around 20 miles per day the trio experienced two days of horrendous weather and three beautiful days. The challenge was enjoyed by all three walkers, particularly because they were aware they were raising funds for an organisation that is very active and close to their family. The most recent DSF fund raisers are indebted to their families, friends and work colleagues in Fife College, Fife Society for the Blind and Babcock Rosyth for their incredible support with this project.

Photo: L to R - Richard Brickley President Disability Sport Fife meeting with Fiona and Robert McCormick at the DSF Head Office at the Michael Woods Sports & Leisure Centre in Glenrothes to relive some memories from their West Highland Way challenge. 
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Kieran Rises up the Rankings

Kieran Steer from Crossgates is one of four Disability Sport Fife (DSF) members who can currently claim the honour of wearing the colours of Great Britain. Kieran is also one of a very small number of DSF members seriously challenging for a place in Team GB for the Paralympic Games in Rio in 2016.

Kieran is Fife’s first international boccia player and with every major competition he is learning lots and improving in all aspects of his game. The recent Boccia World Championships in Beijing were his greatest challenge in performance boccia to date but yet again he rose to the occasion. Kieran teamed up with Stephen McGuire and Jamie Docherty for Team GB BC4 pairs and finished in a very creditable fourth position, just outside the medals. 

In the BC4 singles competition Kieran came third in his pool, but needed to be in the top 2 to reach the final 16 play offs.  Kieran by his own admission played better in some games than in others. Unfortunately in his first game he was drawn against the very experienced GB number one, fellow Scot,  Stephen McGuire and he lost narrowly by 4:3.  He then played Domingues Viera from Portugal and lost 10:1. Kieran’s final game was against Fernando Pereira and he won this game in a tie break. A satisfactory singles campaign for the young Fife player, considering the quality of the opposition.

Under the guidance of GB Boccia performance coach Claire Morrison from Dalgety Bay, Kieran is progressing steadily as an international sportsman. The World championships offered Kieran an opportunity to play against the world’s leading Asian players for the first time. Few players work harder than Kieran and the competition in China reinforced even further his desire to win a major international honour. 

The World Rankings have just been updated and in individual play, Kieran has moved up from 37 to 19 and is of course delighted.  The BC4 GB Pairs have also moved up the rankings to #2.  Altogether a very satisfactory outcome for Kieran and his GB Boccia team mates. In addition Team GB BC1/2 team and BC3 pairs have both moved up to #1 position. The 2014 World Championships have ended well for the GB Boccia leading players who will try to sustain this form through to Rio in 2016.

Photo: L to R Kieran, Jamie and Stephen plus coach Claire Morrison.

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Scottish Para - sport Swim Team Announced

38 Scottish Para - sport swimmers have been selected by Scottish Swimming for the British Gas Open Short Course Championships to be held at Manchester Aquatics Centre 22nd & 23rd November.

The Scottish team is hoping to improve on their 2nd place finish from last year against strong teams from within England and Wales. The team will be headed up by Andy Jackson (Ren96) assisted by Sharon McIntyre (North Ayrshire ST), Jeff Tavendale (Highland ST) and Dawn MacBeth (Inverness ASC).

Several Disability Sport Fife swimmers have been selected for Team Scotland and they are listed below.

Lucy Walkup - Carnegie SC

Craig Rodgie - Edinburgh Univ SC

Oliver Carter - Cupar and District SC

Stefan Hoggan - Carnegie SC

Steven McCormick - FINS

Lucy Walkup from Glenrothes has recently enrolled at the University of Stirling and is in the process of moving across from her Fife based club Carnegie to train at the National Academy in Stirling. Stefan Hoggan from Auchtermuchty and Carnegie SC has been a prolific medalist for Team Scotland but is in the process of reviewing his future as a performance swimmer and the 2014 Championships will be an important occasion for the Fife swimmer. Craig Rodgie from Dalgety Bay sampled the highest level of Para – sport swimming at the London Paralympic Games and this has made him even more determined to challenge for a place in Team GB for Rio. Oliver Carter from Cupar and District SC is one of the fast improving young swimmers and every British Championships contributes to his learning as a performance swimmer. Steven McCormick is the least experienced of the Fife quintet but within a short period he has demonstrated he is a young swimmer with considerable potential. The Fife representation is a mixture of youth and experience and all are guaranteed to make a significant contribution to the Team Scotland attack on the British Swim Team title.

 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife Athlete Half Marathon PB

Derek Rae from Anster Haddies continues to improve as a performance distance runner under the guidance of Fife AC coaches Ron Morrison and Don MacGregor. In March of this year Derek set a PB in the Alloa Half Marathon of 74.52 and in the Bank of Scotland Great Scottish Run Half Marathon in Glasgow this month he bettered that performance with a run of 73.03. His overall finishing position was 33.

Since his motor cycle accident, distance running means even more to the young Kirkcaldy athlete and his ambition of one day representing Great Britain in the T46 class is what inspires and motivates him daily. The 2015 London Marathon will be another important milestone as he waits to hear if he has gained a place in the International Paralympic Committee elite runners race.

Disability Sport Fife (DSF) has never had a more dedicated and committed athlete member. Derek is an inspiration to his fellow distance runners and as a DSF ambassador he is constantly encouraging participants of all levels of ability across all sports. Derek has a strong back up team and all those who know him are confident that one day he will realise his marathon dreams. 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Couple run for Disability Sport Fife

Many thanks to everybody who supported Wendy and Bob Wylie who ran in the Bank of Scotland Great Scottish Run Half Marathon in Glasgow on behalf of Disability Sport Fife (DSF).

Last year the fund raising efforts of this husband and wife team helped to finance the DSF track and Field Championships at Pitreavie and purchase athletics T shirts for the Fife team that won the national team title at the Scottish Championships in Perth organised by Scottish Disability Sport and Scottish Athletics.

Money is still coming in to the DSF My Donate site but Wendy reckons the total raised for DSF this year will be around £400.

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Great Start for Fife Athletes in Edinburgh

The East Cross Country Series 1 organised by Scottish Disability Sport and Scottish Athletics was run over a course at the Riccarton Campus of Heriot Watt University. The four events series are among the most popular activities on the annual programme supported by Disability Sport Fife (DSF) and its member organisations. 26 representative athletes from Lochgelly HS, Balwearie HS and Bell Baxter HS departments for pupils with additional support needs supported Series 1 and all recorded impressive early season performances.

All athletes compete for points towards the overall title of leading athlete over the four series of races. Medals are awarded to the first three athletes across the line in the 1km, 2km and 3km races.

Marie Wilson (Lochgelly HS), Leigh-Anne MacDonald (Balwearie HS) and Kirsty Fraser (Balwearie HS) finished first, second and third respectively in the 1km race for girls S4-S6. Derry Reilly (Lochgelly HS) and Michelle Harley (Lochgelly HS) finished second and third respectively in the equivalent race for S2 athletes. Courtney Morris (Lochgelly HS) won the S1 race in a time of 7:37.

In the equivalent race for boys the S1 and S3 title winners were Shakeel Ul-haq (S1 - Lochgelly HS) and Dean Bruce (S3 - Bell Baxter HS). These wins will result in 10 points being awarded to the athletes for the four series competition. 

Reece Dickson (S3 – Balwearie HS) and Robert Sellstrom (S2 – Balwearie HS) finished second in their respective 1km races and gained 9 points towards the overall series title. Reece Smith (Lochgelly HS) gained a very valuable 9 points when he finished second in the S1 race in a time of 7:42. Gary Fraser (Lochgelly HS) finished third in the S2 race gaining 8 points.

Stuart Taylor (Balwearie HS) won the S3 boys 2km race in a time of 8:56 and 10 points towards the overall title. Alex Evans (Balwearie HS) equalled this performance with a win in the S2 2km race and similarly gained 10 points. Once again the outstanding performance by a Fife cross country runner in the East Series was recorded by Sam Fernando (S4 - Bell Baxter HS) who won the S4-S6 race in a time of 11:52. Sam won the overall S3 Series title last year and the 10 points gained in this race has set him up well in his quest to win the S4-S6 title for the first time. Sam lives in Gateside and trains with Fife AC.

Well over 50% of the athletes competing in Series 1 were from Fife and it is predicted that there will be an even stronger entry in Series 2 which will be held at Riccarton Campus, Heriot Watt University on Wednesday 19 November.

Photo: Sam Fernando Bell Baxter HS
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife Masters Wins in Inverclyde

Four of the Carnegie Masters were in outstanding form at the Inverclyde Masters Meet held at the Waterfront in Greenock. With the British Short Course Masters scheduled for Ponds Forge in Sheffield in late October the results could not have come at a better time.

Ex Paralympian Lara Ferguson from Leslie competing in 30 -34 age group recorded her best series of Masters victories to date. Lara contested six races, winning four and collecting silver in the other two. Lara won gold for 50 freestyle 31.88, 100 free in 1.09.70, 100 backcrawl 1.25.07 and 200 Individual Medley 2.54.53. She completed her Meet swims with silver medals for 50 backstroke 38.86 and 50 butterfly 36.45.

Ashley Warrender from Leven, swimming in the 25 – 29 age group, made a very impressive start to her career as a Carnegie Master with top two finishes in all her six swims. Her gold medal swims were 50 breaststroke 38.40 and 50 freestyle 30.33. Ashley’s four silver medal performances were 50 butterfly 33.15, 200 Individual medley 2.41.07, 100 butterfly 1.12.30 and 100 Individual Medley 1.13.72. An excellent Masters start for the youngest member of the squad.



Once again Janet McLean from Freuchie, swimming in the 40-44 age group was the outstanding master of the Carnegie squad. Janet won six individual gold medals across a range of distances and swimming disciplines. Her impressive winning swims were 800 freestyle 10.11.50, 50 backstroke 34.83, 50 butterfly 32.79, 100 freestyle 1.05.85, 50 breaststroke 40.11 and 100 backstroke 1.15.08. Also competing in this age group was Joanna Laing who had five fine swims and a highest finishing position of sixth in 50 backstroke 1.02.84.

Masters swimming at the Carnegie Club is strong and the club is always on the lookout for new members. As the squad heads south in October they are hoping to have the experienced Wendy Szaranek from Glenrothes back in action. Disability Sport Fife is delighted that one of its most successful Paralympians of recent years plays such an important role in Masters swimming in Fife.

Photo: L to R Joanna Laing, Ashley Warrender, Janet McLean and Lara Ferguson
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife Athlete on a Roll

Derek Rae from Kirkcaldy and Anster Haddies continues to improve in his quest to become an international Para- sport athlete. Since being taken under the wing of the Fife AC coaching team of Ron Morrison and Don MacGregor in St Andrews he has made steady progress on the track and roads over a range of distances. His focus for 2015 is to run in his second London Marathon but for the first time in the IPC Athletics elite runners race and enter the rankings list for class T46.

Competing for Disability Sport Fife at the Scottish Championships organised by Scottish Disability Sport and Scottish Athletics, Derek ran a personal best for 1500 metres of 4:27. This event was held in Perth in September and it was only in June that he set a track PB of 4:42. 1500 is a much shorter distance than his specialist events but clearly indicates the considerable progress he has made on the track in a relatively short period.

Derek’s most important run was earlier this month in the Scottish 10K Championships in Stirling where he ran a PB of 32.40. This was a personal best by 1.24 and another landmark performance in what has been a great year so far. Derek followed this run with a time of 33.16 in the East Neuk 10K, maintaining high quality runs in the events targeted by coach Ron. The next milestone will be the Glasgow Half Marathon on October 5th and another good run will confirm that Derek is well on track for the big event in 2015.

It is all good for this young Fife athlete at the moment and it gets even better soon as he ties the knot with partner Susan who has been an enormous source of strength and influence since his accident in particular.

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Voluntary Sector Awards 2014

DSF athlete ambassadors Graham Law and Derek Rae attended the Fife Voluntary Action Volunteering and Voluntary Sector Awards Ceremony at the Old Course Hotel in St Andrews, along with DSF President Richard Brickley.

Not surprisingly the evening was enjoyed by representatives from the Fife voluntary sector and organisations and individuals were recognised for the immense contribution they are making to so many people in the Kingdom.

DSF was short listed in two categories - Reducing Health Inequalities Award and Equality and Diversity Award. In this instance we received runners up certificates but we were proud to be short listed along with such important Fife organisations. On the night the MC raised our profile considerably. 
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Lochgelly HS presented with Badminton Equipment

The late Russell Hogg from Dunfermline was a legend in badminton in Fife and Scotland. Russell moved employment from Badminton Scotland to Scottish Disability Sport and inspired Richard Brickley, President of Disability Sport Fife (DSF) to add badminton to the list of priority sports promoted by DSF.

DSF set up badminton sessions in central and west Fife and reinforced the position of badminton within the multi sports sessions run across Fife. Over the past five years entries have risen steadily for the DSF badminton championships held at Kirkcaldy Leisure Centre with support from the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust.

Running in parallel with the weekly sessions, Fife championships and a Badminton Festival held at the University of St Andrews earlier in the year, DSF and Badminton Scotland started to deliver workshops for school staff working with pupils with additional support needs and Social Work staff working with adults with a learning disability.



Feedback from the workshops indicated that DSF member organisations did not have the equipment required to deliver quality sessions to their members. DSF and Jane Russell of Badminton Scotland then approached Bill Hogg of Yonex to cost a bag of appropriate equipment to deliver sessions across Fife to players of all levels of ability.

The next challenge was funding for the project and the Big Lottery came to the rescue after DSF submitted a successful application under the 2014 Communities strand. The DSF Supporting Coaching and Learning with equipment project now provides DSF member organisations with badminton equipment when they send five or more staff members to a DSF/Badminton Scotland Workshop.

Two workshops have been held in central and west Fife and the third one is planned for Thursday November 13th in Glenrothes. Four member organisations have met the project criteria and will receive bags of equipment, courtesy of Yonex and the Big Lottery. The first presentation was made recently at Lochgelly High School to Principal Teacher Anne Marie McMorrin (centre) by Richard Brickley of DSF and Jane Russell of Badminton Scotland. 
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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First Club Singles Title for Fife Bowler

Michael Simpson from Auchtermuchty and Strathmiglo Bowling Club has had an outstanding career in high performance bowls to date and he is determined it will continue into 2015 and beyond. One year out from the Commonwealth Games, he was part of the Scottish Para bowls triple that excelled in the Home Nations and Eight Nations Tournaments at Kelvingrove in preparation for Glasgow 2014. Having gained selection for Team Scotland for Glasgow 2014 he was part of the triple that narrowly missed out on a bronze medal in a thrilling match against England.

Like his fellow national squad members, Michael is in the midst of trials for the Scottish team that will travel to New Zealand in February for the IBD World Championships.

Four years ago Michael made the trip to South Africa for his first World Championships and was a key member of the Scottish team that finished second in the team competition behind the home nation and ahead of Australia, champions four years earlier. 

Michael was adversely affected by the climate in his singles competition but came back with a vengeance in the pairs to win silver with partner Kevin Wallace, Scotland’s number one.

Three critical trials will determine the composition of Team Scotland for the IBD World Championships in New Zealand in February 2015. The team will be identified in October and Disability Sport is delighted that once again there are visual and physically impaired bowlers from Fife in contention for places. Michael will be as determined as anybody to gain selection and if his club form this year is anything to go by then he has a strong chance. On three occasions he has reached the singles final at Strathmiglo Bowling Club but this year he won the title for the first time. Michael also reached the semi final of the JB Pearson Trophy and when G2014 is added, it has been another special year for the ‘Muchty man.

Like so many successful high performance sportsmen and women Michael receives lots of support from his family and friends. If he manages to successfully negotiate the trials, there will be an additional series of training sessions in the lead up to the Championships in New Zealand. Unlike Glasgow 2014, bowlers who are selected for the Scottish Disability Sport team will have to raise money to help meet the costs of this very expensive project. All of that is for the future however and Michael’s attention is currently focussed on making the team. Michael is aware that he and any other Fife bowlers selected for the team will be supported by their local communities and Disability Sport Fife.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife Bowler in top form

Martin Hunter from Burntisland Bowling Club is enjoying his most successful year to date in lawn bowls. At club level he has won more honours than in any previous year and as a member of the national disability regional and national squads he has excelled in local and national competitions.

In his final competition of the year in the Burntisland club, Martin skipped his triple to victory soon after finishing runner up in the mixed pairs, a title he won in 2013. In singles his results have been exceptional. For the second year in succession Martin was crowned singles champion following on from a win in the President’s singles. Outstanding club performances for a very focussed, performance bowler.

Martin retained the Disability Sports Fife single hand title which he won early in the summer at the Beveridge Park in Kirkcaldy. This earned him the right to represent Team Fife at the Scottish Disability Sport Championships at Westburn Park in Aberdeen early in September where he defeated his international team mate Billy Allan from Cowdenbeath in the final. In his first year as a member of Disability Sport Fife, Martin completed the double but his double victory this year he said was even more satisfying.

Para bowls in Scotland is exceptionally strong in 2014. Scotland’s visually impaired mixed pairs team won silver in Glasgow at the Commonwealth Games and the physically disabled triple just missed out on bronze with a very commendable fourth place. Martin was a member of the Scottish squad leading up to final selection but he just missed out on a Scottish team place. Currently the Burntisland man is going through the challenges of trials for the Scottish team for the IBD World Championships in New Zealand in February 2015. The Scottish team will be defending a second place finish at the World Championships in South Africa four years ago which followed a third place finish in Australia eight years ago. On current form Martin will be challenging strongly for inclusion in the team for his first World championships.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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DSF Loses a Great Ally

The Chief Executive of Fife Society for the Blind, Alan Suttie has passed away age 62. For the past 28 years he has assisted Disability Sport Fife to promote physical activity including sport for blind and visually impaired participants. In March of this year I had the privilege of supporting Alan during his one and only visit to the warm pool in the new leisure centre in Glenrothes and he was determined at the time to make it a regular occasion. Sadly the severity and aggressiveness of his illness dictated what was possible and this incredibly dedicated, brave and determined man was unable to fulfil all that he had hoped for.

Alan was personally very committed to physical activity and very supportive of the DSF programme. Alan was an expert in the field of sensory impairment and I knew I could call upon his advice and expertise at any time. He helped me so often and in so many different ways. Whenever required to do so Alan would promote our work and encourage FSB members to become involved whenever appropriate. DSF has lost a great friend and ally by his untimely death. The thoughts of all of us in DSF go out to Janet his wife.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Disability Sport Fife Champions

DSF President Richard Brickley was delighted to personally thank Wendy Wylie and her younger brother Graham Law for their fundraising efforts at the recent Scottish Disability Sport Athletics Championships held at the George Duncan Athletics centre in Perth.

Graham lives in Glenrothes and is a DSF athlete ambassador. For the fourth year in succession he ran in the Glenrothes Road Running Festival and this year raised £109 for DSF. In the photo he proudly displays one of the medals he won at the Championships. Graham is a very enthusiastic all round sportsman and is engaged in DSF activities most days of the week.



Wendy and husband Bob undertook a series of fundraising events on behalf of DSF some months ago. Their efforts contributed considerably to the costs of staging the 2014 DSF Athletics Championships at Pitreavie in June and the purchase of T shirts for the Fife Team for the National Championships. Graham is proudly wearing one of the new shirts supplied by ACA Sports.

Wendy’s most recent fundraising challenge is to run in the Glasgow Half Marathon and try to raise £250 towards staging the 2015 DSF Athletics Championships at Pitreavie. Supporters can contribute to her cause through the Disability Sport Fife MyDonate site.

Photo: Wendy Wylie, Graham Law and Richard Brickley
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Athletics Results Analysed

Now that the results from the 2014 SDS Senior Track and Field Championships are available it has been possible to examine in greater detail the performances of individual team members. 30 team members won single titles, 6 won two titles each and 2 Fife team members won three titles. In addition the performance by the men’s 4 x 400 metres relay team must go down as one of the outstanding victories of the 2014 Championships.

Well done to Dionne Mackie from Balwearie HS who finished the most successful junior member of the team with wins in 100 metres and long jump. Congratulations to Lochgelly HS Sports club members Glen Miller, Stephen Russell and James Cunningham who won their titles on the track over 60 metres, 100 metres and 200 metres. Scotland’s leading middle distance runner Owen Miller from Dunfermline Track and Field won the 800 metres and 1500 metres and as we know ran an amazing last leg of the 4 x 400 metres relay. Seated thrower Jonny Brown who trains at the DSF athletics sessions in Glenrothes and at Pitreavie won the F33 discus and shot and confirmed the Fife commitment to seated throwing is beginning to pay dividends.

Two Fife athletes were in scintillating form in Perth and demonstrated the kind of form we all believed they are capable of. Philip Callander from West Fife Community Support Services trains with Pamela Robson and Kelly Braid at Pitreavie and on his way to winning the “B” section 100 metres ran the 8th fastest time of the Championships in 13.1 ….. without spikes. A fine run but perhaps he could move up the rankings with improved footwear and this will be addressed before the 2015 Championships. In winning the “B” 200 metres he recorded the 7th fastest time of the day and similarly suggested he has the potential to run faster.  Phillip’s final win of the day was in long jump where he recorded the third longest jump of the day with 3.98, just ahead of his team mate Alex Fisher who jumped 3.64.

Atlanta Crawford trains with Pamela Robson in Glenrothes and similarly had three excellent victories in Perth. She began her day with a win in the “B” section 100 metres and recorded the fastest women’s time of the day in 14.9 seconds. Atlanta is an excellent field events athlete and her second win was in long jump where her best jump of the day of 6.98 was the highest recorded by any athlete at the Championships. Atlanta completed her day with a win in shot with a throw of 4.26 to register the leading throw of the 2014 Championships.

Click here to access the results from the 2014 Championships in Perth. A small number of athletes have been identified above but the undoubted success of Team Fife in Perth was based on the quality of Fife Team across all disciplines and all ability groups. The team had prepared well and on the day supported one another enthusiastically. Well done to all the support staff who made such a significant contribution to a memorable victory. The prestigious AR Mitchell Athletics Team Trophy is back in Fife once again.

Photos:

Atlanta Crawford and Philip Callander with staff member Jason Arthur from West Fife CSS.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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A Rare Team Fife Victory

The athletes from Disability Sport Fife (DSF) reached new heights by winning the AR Mitchell Team Trophy at the 2014 Scottish Disability Sport Senior Track and Field Championships at the George Duncan Athletics Arena in Perth. In May of this year, DSF members won the Kintore National Swimming Team Trophy in Glasgow and the victory in Perth meant that this was the first occasion Team Fife has held both trophies in the same calendar year.

Derek Rae (Anster Haddies), Owen Miller (Dunfermline Track and Field) and Sam Fernando (Bell Baxter HS and Fife AC) set the tone for the day with convincing medal winning runs in their respective classes in the opening event over 1500 metres. Owen rounded off a brilliant Team Fife performance by anchoring the Fife 4 x 400metres relay team to victory for the first time in front of almost 90 cheering team mates, support staff, coaches and families.

Team planning started the day after the Fife Championships at Pitreavie Athletics Centre in June and culminated in a memorable victory by the largest ever Fife team to enter the national championships. Fife Team managers Caroline Clunie (East Fife Community Support Services) and Pamela Robson ( Balwearie HS) were thrilled with the performances of Team Fife and attributed the success to the preparation and planning that has gone on throughout the year in schools, DSF athletics sessions and multi sports sessions organised in conjunction with the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust. Every team member was kitted out this year with new T shirts financed through the efforts of fund raisers Wendy and Bob Wylie and provided by ACA Sports.

The victorious Team Fife of athletes were selected from Balwearie HS, Lochgelly HS, Bell Baxter HS, West Fife CSS, East Fife CSS, Central Fife CSS, Scottish Autism, Anster Haddies, Dunfermline Track and Field, Fife AC, DSF Pitreavie, DSF Glenrothes and DSF St Andrews. Fife entered the largest number of physically and visually impaired athletes to date and the performances of the 16 plus teenagers are worthy of special mention. Scottish Disability Sport and Scottish Athletics organise the event on a time and distance classification system and DSF is proud of the range of abilities of the members of the Fife team. Athletics is for all in Fife and the role played by the many partners involved in the programme is key to the success. Fife, for example, is promoting seated throwing in conjunction with Scottish Athletics and the Fife Leisure Trust and two of its young throwers were medallists at this year’s event.

Photo: Team Fife line up in their new team kit during the lunch break
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Disability Bowls Championships in Aberhill

Each year, prior to the start of the indoor bowls season, Disability Sport Fife (DSF) members are offered the opportunity to compete in a bowls tournament at the East Fife Indoor Bowling Club in Aberhill. Club members play host to the Fife Championships organised by DSF for bowlers with a learning disability and members from clubs in and around central Fife turn out in significant numbers to act as officials. On this occasion host club President Helen Vickery welcomed DSF members and presented trophies to successful participants at the conclusion of another successful annual Fife Championships.

Five days after winning her first Scottish Lawn Bowls title in Aberdeen, Wendy Thomson from St Andrews Bowling Club and East Fife Community Support Services (CSS) won the Fife Ladies Open Indoor section in convincing fashion with a run of undefeated performances. In the final she met Michelle Wallace from Central Fife CSS but Wendy is brimming with confidence at the moment and her 10 – 3 win confirmed the superiority of her play. 

Hayley Binnie from West Fife CSS defeated her team mate Christine Bannister by 5 – 4 in the Women’s “B” section final. Stuart Carlin from Central Fife CSS was the winner of the short carpet mixed novice section.

In the men’s “C” section Fergus Wilson from West Fife CSS was the form player winning all four of his qualifying games and final. Willie Christie from East Fife CSS was his opponent in the final but he lost out by 2 – 8 shots. Jimmy Binnie from the west of Fife was the winner of the men’s “B” section with a perfect run of five wins and one drawn tie. His drawn qualifying tie was against his opponent in the final Robert McMahon from Central CSS. In the final however the West Fife player ran up 9 shots against a total of 2 by his opponent to win yet another Fife title in a lengthy career in DSF bowls. Kevin Mustard Central CSS and Jimmy Ramsay East Fife CSS shared third place in this section.

The men’s open section brings together Fife’s leading male bowlers and some of the best players in the country. Gary Handyside, West Fife CSS won the third place play off against Gary Lindsay from East Fife CSS but not surprisingly the final involved the two leading bowlers in Fife, Craig Donaldson  from Kinghorn BC and Central Fife CSS plus Darryl Stewart from Abbeyview BC. Both players have won national titles indoors and outdoors and only five days previously Darryl won the Scottish Lawn Bowls title in Aberdeen. At Aberhill Craig was determined to retain his Fife indoor title and throughout the tie he bowled majestically. His final delivery in the final end was worthy of winning any title. The final score of 8 – 5 in favour of Craig was a fair reflection of the gap between these two great friends and opponents on the day.

The East Fife Indoor BC is a key partner of Disability Sport Fife and in his closing remarks DSF President Richard Brickley paid tribute to the support received from members over many years and singled out Bob Miller in particular for over 20 years of commitment to this annual event.

Photo: Jimmy Binnie - west Fife
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife Youngsters Head for Manchester

Disability Sport Fife congratulates Craig Smith from the Fife Performance Squad and FINS and Ollie Carter from the Fife Performance Squad and Cupar and District Swimming Club on their recent selection for the UK School Games in Manchester.

Follow their progress  and see the timetable of competition and results on www.2014schoolgames.com
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife Bowlers Triumph in Aberdeen

The leading Disability Sport Fife bowlers excelled at the 2014 Scottish Lawn Bowls Championships organised by Scottish Disability Sport at the Westburn Park in Aberdeen. Seven single hand titles were contested and Fife bowlers won four and two runners up silver medals. Fife has a long tradition of success at the national championships but the 2014 results surpassed all expectations.

In the men’s and women’s sections for physically disabled and visually impaired unrestricted bowlers the Fife results were outstanding. Fife champions Martin Hunter from Burntisland and Maria Spencer from Dunfermline won the Scottish titles to continue a fine run of form in 2014. Both are members of the national squad and were challenging for places in the Scottish team for Glasgow 2014. Martin has enjoyed considerable success at club level and Maria continues to excel in Scottish and British Blind Bowls as the reigning world champion in her class. With the World championships scheduled for New Zealand in 2015 these results could not come at a better time. Fife received an additional boost when Billy Allan from Cowdenbeath collected the silver medal in the men’s section in a repeat of the Fife final. In the men’s section for wheelchair users Wullie Harrison from Central Fife CSS won silver.

The section for bowlers with a learning disability always attracts the largest entry from participating SDS Branches. Over the years DSF has won both men’s and women’s titles but never both in the same year. The 2014 championships created history for Disability Sport Fife when Darryl Stewart from Dunfermline and Wendy Thomson from St Andrews and East Fife Community Support Services produced two very special results. Wendy is a first time winner but Darryl won the title in 2007 and 2008. Wendy was introduced to lawn bowls at the Dalgairn Centre and then travelled to the Beveridge Park weekly in Kirkcaldy in the summer for coaching from Matt Thomson. From there she became involved with her local club in St Andrews and a national title is just reward for her commitment to the sport and the progress she has made. Darryl has for many years been one of the country’s leading lawn bowlers and his win came as no surprise to Team Fife.

Bowls is one of the most popular competition sports organised by Disability Sport Fife throughout the sporting year. Fife bowlers with a learning disability now turn their attention to the very popular indoor tournament hosted annually by the East Fife Indoor Club at Aberhill. This year’s event is scheduled for Thursday 11th September and bowlers on this occasion will not only challenge for 9 individual titles but celebrate the Scottish success for Darryl and Wendy.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Callum Meets a Very Special Athlete

Young Callum Sloan from Dunfermline was just about to start his training session at Pitreavie with Disability Sport Fife athletics coach Pamela Robson when he noticed Commonwealth Games gold medallist Eilidh Childs was training at the same time.

Eilidh took time to chat to Callum about her Games experiences and enquired about the young Dunfermline athlete’s athletics aspirations.

Although speechless for most of the time Callum was massively inspired at meeting the Scottish superstar and put in one of his most committed training sessions of the year, according to his coach.

 

Callum is a rising star in Scottish junior disability athletics. Since receiving his first racing chair from the fund raising efforts of the students from the Netball Club at the University of St Andrews he has gone from strength to strength. 

Callum and his family were inspired by the Para sport events at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow and Callum hopes to participate in his first London mini marathon in 2015. Callum competes in class T53, the same class as Scottish teenager Samantha Kinghorn from the Borders, who excelled at the recent IPC European Championships in Swansea. 

 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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September Snippets 

  • Fife events –The term kicked off with the ASN Gala on Thursday 4th September, courtesy of the Rector and staff of Lochgelly HS. Once again senior pupils played a significant role in the running of the gala. The Association moved to Aberhill on Thursday 11th September for the 2014 Fife annual indoor bowls championships, courtesy of the President and East Fife IBC members. Healthy entries were received for both events.
  • Scottish events – as always DSF entered a strong team for the SDS Lawn Bowls championships in Aberdeen on Saturday 6th September. Last minute call offs weakened our entry but Team Fife recorded many successes. Following the success of Para-bowls at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow we should witness a growth in interest in the sport in the months ahead. On Wednesday 10th September over 90 Fife athletes with physical and learning disabilities travelled to Perth for the SDS Senior Track and Field Championships. This is the largest Fife entry to date and reflects the growing interest in the sport across Fife. Sessions in east, west and central Fife have never been better attended and the DSF relationship with local clubs has never been stronger. Thanks to fund raising by Wendy and Bob Wylie we had T-shirts for all Fife athletes.
  • Cross country – SDS has now provided dates for 2014/2015 cross country events. These are as follows: 1 October (Heriot Watt University, Riccarton Campus), 19 November (Heriot Watt University, Riccarton Campus), 20 January (Peffermill Playing Fields, Edinburgh), 17 February (Peffermill Playing Fields, Edinburgh). These will be added to the 2014/2015 DSF calendar of events which was circulated to all member organisations and partners during the summer break. The revised calendar will be circulated later in the month and of course updated on the DSF web site.
  • DSF web site - please check out the web site for everything to do with DSF. The news section in particular is regularly updated. (www.fifeleisure.org.uk – find us in the health and wellbeing section).
  • Have you read the August newsletter (download) which is available on the web site in addition to the new DSF glossy brochure (download), available in every leisure centre in Fife? Through the web site, interested parties can access the most up to date sessions timetable detailing times and locations where children, young people and adults with disabilities can access physical activity options on a weekly basis. DSF is indebted to key partner, the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust, for support with the hosting and design of the web site.
  • Badminton – in Partnership with Badminton Scotland, DSF has grown the sport across Fife. A major influence in this development was the late Russell Hogg who was a staff member with SDS and before that Badminton Scotland. Two workshops, tutored by Jane Russell of Badminton Scotland, have been held at Glenrothes and Lochgelly High Schools and another is planned for the east of Fife this year. DSF successfully negotiated a Big Lottery grant and equipment bags are being provided for schools and member organisations that support the training workshops in significant numbers and commit to the ongoing promotion of the sport. With support from Yonex, four presentations will be made this month to successful schools and member organisations. An increased entry is expected at the Fife Championships at Kirkcaldy Leisure Centre in 2015.
  • Fund raising – DSF supporters Wendy and Bob Wylie are running in the Glasgow Half Marathon. Their fund raising efforts, plus support from the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust, funded the 2014 Fife Track and Field Championships at Pitreavie. Wendy and Bob plan to raise funds for DSF again this year. You can support their efforts by visiting the DSF section of My Donate or collect a sponsor form from Wendy direct or from Norma. Please assist these superb DSF supporters in their very worthy cause.
  • Education opportunities – DSF is always trying to support professional staff and volunteers who wish to pursue Scottish governing body awards or the equivalent. Two staff recently signed up for Scottish FA Level 1 and 2 Children’s Coaching Awards thanks to support from the Fife Council/Scottish FA Football development officers. An Introduction to Poolwork Course is scheduled for Lochgelly HS on Friday 14th November and DSF will host another Boccia Leaders Course in 2015. Negotiations are underway with Scottish Athletics to register new volunteers for training this year and DSF and SDS have asked for another twilight DIT Course in Fife in Feb 2015. A DIT Rugby course is also planned for Fife and there are ongoing swimming opportunities throughout the year across Fife. These are just some of the options available and the SDS and Active Fife Education and Training calendars are always excellent sources of learning opportunities. Contact Norma for further information.
  • Holiday sport – in response to requests from athletes and families and with support from the Leisure Trust we achieved something this summer that has never been done before. We managed to sustain a significant number of weekly sport specific and multi sports sessions throughout the summer months. This was appreciated by participants who turned up in significant numbers throughout the holidays. This would not have been possible without the support of our loyal team of committed coaches. Hopefully this will become the norm during future holiday breaks.

 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Balwearie HS Swimmers take Fife Title

One of the most popular swimming events in the Disability Sport Fife calendar is the gala for pupils with additional support needs at Lochgelly HS. The event results determine the composition of the Fife team for the national junior championships organised by Scottish Disability Sport at Tollcrosss Leisure Centre in November. Each swimmer competes for team points towards the Inter Schools team trophy which was won this year by the swimmers from Balwearie HS by four points from the combined Madras College/Bell Baxter HS squad. Defending champions Woodmill HS finished third with Lochgelly HS and Glenrothes hS finishing in four and fifth places respectively.

Traditionally the final two events on the programme are the girls and boys Inter Schools relays and these two events are always keenly contested and this year was no exception. Glenrothes HS pupils won the girls relay with Balwearie HS finishing second. The boys relay was exceptionally close with Balwearie HS taking the title in 1.36.62 from Woodmill HS in runners up position in 1.36.07. The relays offer double double points and had a major bearing on the overall team result.

The leading girl swimmers at the gala were Samantha Benton Woodmill HS (backstroke), Jennifer Paton Balwearie HS (breaststroke) and Holly Jane Gray Madras College (freestyle). The following boys turned in the leading performances at the gala. Daniel Henderson (Glenrothes HS) backstroke and freestyle and Arran Howie Bell Baxter HS breaststroke. Daniel Henderson and Samantha Benton were voted the top swimmers at the 2014 gala. Medal and trophy presentations were made by Mr Daniel Ogilvie, Depute Rector of Lochgelly HS. 

Photo: Balwearie HS swimmers with the team trophy.

 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife Athletics Junior Champions

For the first time at the Fife Track and Field Championships, organised by Disability Sport Fife, a team trophy was awarded to the school gaining the most points across all track and field events. The 2014 top school and winners of the Russell Hogg Trophy were the young athletes with additional support needs from Woodmill High School in Dunfermline.

The late Russell Hogg was a champion badminton player from Dunfermline who represented Scotland at the Commonwealth Games. As a staff member with Scottish Disability Sport he inspired Disability Sport Fife to promote disability badminton. Five years on the sport has grown in popularity across Fife. More disabled players than ever enjoy the sport and the 2014 Fife Championships had their highest entry to date. DSF has pioneered a badminton coach workshop in conjunction with Badminton Scotland, tutored by Development Officer Jane Russell. Interest in the sport increases by the month.

Julie Hogg, wife of Russell, recently met with some of the young athletes from Woodmill HS to hand over the magnificent Russell Hogg Trophy. The Trophy will be contested annually and will ensure that Russell will never be forgotten in Fife for the role he played as a great international badminton player and the part he played as an inclusive coach inspiring others to take up the sport he loved so much. 
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Young Footballer Rewarded

Liam Downie from Balwearie High School scored more goals than any other player involved in the 2014 7s League organised by Disability Sport Fife for players with additional learning needs.

Liam was a member of the winning Balwearie HS team and his achievement has been recognised by Scottish Football by the award of new national team tops and shorts.

Liam was photographed at the recent Fife Swimming Championships wearing his new team shirt.

The 7s League is held annually at Kirkcaldy HS and attracts entries from players in secondary schools across Fife with Departments for pupils with additional learning needs. 

 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife Athlete Competes in Grand Prix

Owen Miller from Dunfermline and Dunfermline Track and Field participated in the Sainsbury’s IPC Athletics Grand Prix Final at the Birmingham Alexander Stadium and ran a very creditable 4.05.86 in finishing sixth in the T20 1500 metres. Steven Morris was the only GB athlete ahead of him in a time of 4.02.93.

The race was won by 18 year old Cristiano Pereira from Portugal in 3.57.03 when he caught the experienced Polish race favourite on the line in a memorable sprint finish. The Grand Prix Final was integrated into the Sainsbury’s Birmingham Diamond League and included in the BBC2 live show hosted by Gabby Logan. 

Owen is coached by Gemma Nicol and hopes one day to run for Great Britain in an IPC European, World Championships or perhaps even the Paralympic Games. The young Disability Sport Fife athlete was spotted by his PE teacher while a pupil at Woodmill HS and following a successful career in cross country he turned his attention to the track where he has made steady progress in 800 and 1500 metres. 

Owen will be leading by example and hopefully from the front, at the forthcoming SDS Scottish Track and Field Championships in Perth as a member of Team Fife chasing the national team title.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Perth Supports Disability Cricket

Scottish Disability Sport  is proud of the range and quality of sports development projects that have been undertaken in the last few years with specific governing bodies of sport and significant others. Particularly successful have been a series of initiatives with the Live Active Cricket Development Team and in particular with Kirsteen Ross, the Cricket Development Officer.

The first initiative involved the hosting of a DIT cricket one day course in Perth attended by mainstream cricket coaches from throughout the area. This was followed by an inclusive sports workshop in Kinross as part of a much larger coach conference. The final inclusive coach workshop specifically targeted high school teenagers already engaged in sports coaching as part of a local junior leadership training initiative. Live Active has demonstrated a strong commitment to inclusive sport and inclusive coaching with Kirsteen playing a lead role and SDS having an input throughout the process.

The ground work of training and development was clearly in evidence when the inaugural “international” cricket tournament for players with disabilities was held at the Bell’s Sports Centre in Perth on Sunday 24th August. Teams from Shropshire, Luton and Bedfordshire travelled to the “Fair City” to take on two local representative teams from the No Limits Club in a weekend festival of indoor cricket. Around 50 players enjoyed a Saturday evening of camaraderie good food before engaging in a full day round robin Sunday tournament. Fair play and sports etiquette were evident throughout the day and there was no shortage of skill and determination. Runs were scored at will and the diversity of bowling actions reflected the range of abilities of the players. Active involvement of all players was key to the success of the day and worthy of mention was the number of slick catches.

Jim Moyes, CEO of Live Active Leisure, welcomed the participants and officially declared the tournament open. In his address, he included the No Limits Cricket Tournament as a most welcome sporting addition to a year of sport that included the Commonwealth Games, St Johnstone winning the Scottish Cup and the forthcoming Ryder Cup, to be staged only 15 minutes away. Kirsteen made mention of the many partners who had supported the tournament in so many different ways and throughout the year to ensure the viability of the No Limits Cricket programme.

As the SDS appointed tutor I am proud to have played a part in assisting the Live Active Cricket Team to reach their current stage of development in disability cricket. However, the driving force behind the programme is undoubtedly the Ross family who are fully engaged and totally dedicated to No Limits Cricket. Well done Kirsteen, husband John and sons James and Peter who are a very special cricketing family. Disability Sport Fife is happy to encourage and support any potential participants from Fife who wish to contact the No Limits Cricket Development Team in Perth.

Photo: the No Limits Cricket squad of players and support staff
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Improved Time and Position in Dublin

Derek Rae from Kirkcaldy and Anster Haddies continues to progress as Scotland’s leading distance athlete with a physical impairment. One year on from his first Scottish Athletics selection, the T46 Disability Sport Fife member returned to Dublin with his mainstream Scottish Athletics colleagues for another run in the Frank Duffy 10 mile race. Not only did he lower his time from 56.52 to 54.46 but improved his finishing position  from 42nd to 26th  and he secured 19th position in his age category. Derek’s real ambitions lie in marathon running and his Dublin time is confirmation that he is on track for a fast run his next marathon in London in 2015.

Derek and his coaching team of Ron Morrison and Don McGregor of Fife AC prepared well for Dublin. A Ravenscraig mile run in July of 4.47 followed by a time of 44.08 in the Ceres 8 indicated that preparations were going well and there was every chance of a quality run in Dublin. Although Derek finished 3rd in the Ceres event, his time was a 40 seconds improvement on his run of the previous year.  

Derek runs fewer races these days but specifically targets those that will help him prepare for his next marathon. In September he has opted to run on the track once again over 1500 metres to assist Team Fife at the Scottish Disability Sport Senior National Championships.

Derek Rae is one of the country’s emerging Para-sport distance athletes. Always a talented runner, his career was put on hold following a motor cycle accident and a brachial plexus injury. With one arm now non functional, Derek has successfully developed a new style of running using an arm support. Derek recently travelled to Berlin for confirmation of his international classification of T46 and while there he won his first international track race over 5kms. A young man with a bright future in disability sport and the support team around him to ensure he has every chance of achieving his full potential in distance running.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Reflections on Achieve 2014 

Team Scotland’s “Achieve 2014” programme is aimed at the next generation of Scottish Commonwealth Games (CG) athletes and coaches to give them the best chance of performing at their best, at their first multi-sport event. The programme offers participants the chance to learn from the Commonwealth Games environment before it is their turn to represent their country with distinction in the future.

SDS could not have selected three better Para – athlete ambassadors for the Achieve 2014 programme than Beth Johnson, Fraser Kane and Kayleigh Haggo. The three young swimmers enjoyed the experience of being part of this exceptional Team Scotland initiative and contributed significantly to its success. They even found time for photos with Scottish stars like Ross Murdoch. Like me they were honoured to spend so much time in the company of Scotland’s leading young athletes, players and coaches and observe so many of Scotland’s current “greats” in action during the Games. 40% of the Delhi Achieve athletes and players competed at G2014, confirming the success, significance and importance of the programme.

During week one of the Games, I was privileged to spend a bit of time with the brilliant Achieve 2014 judo squad of athletes and coaches. As more and more medals were won by Team Scotland judo players, I realised it was the top assignment in town. The squad even adopted me for a photo in Scotland House with four of the gold medal winners. SDS has been working with Judo Scotland for the past three years on promoting inclusive judo. Celebrating the sport’s success at G2014 was an absolute pleasure for all of us. 

Some of the Achieve 2014 judo squad were involved as warm up opponents for Team Scotland players during the Games and at times they sat down to meals battered and bruised. It reminded me of the phrase “taking one for the team”. The unity within the Achieve 2014 judo squad is something I shall always remember. These players and coaches talked about nothing else other than judo and the relationship between coaches and players was very special. Achieve 2014 coach Stuart McWatt plans to explore the possibility of inclusive judo in his home club in the north of Scotland. After a late finish one evening at a judo session we managed to find an Italian Restaurant that would offer us a meal. After years of socialising with committed “large” sportsmen I can report that I have never witnessed anybody who can eat as much as young Valentino Volante from the very talented Achieve 2014 judo squad.

Anybody who knows Kayleigh will be aware that the word “barrier” does not feature in her language. With Beth never more than a few feet away she managed to overcome every physical challenge she came across during her Games week and set an example for others to follow. Public transport, and in particular the buses, were our preferred mode of transport and the City should be fiercely proud of all that it provided for visitors to the Games. Clydesiders and transport staff were present in abundance to offer advice on routes and access. In and around the venues a similar service was provided. For those who know Fraser, you will be aware of his skills and abilities with a cane. His precision and timing, when it comes to clearing a route along Argyle Street on a busy Saturday had to be seen to be believed. Negotiating inappropriately placed street furniture is his forte. In addition he excels as a comedian. Beth and Kayleigh were there for one another at all times but Fraser was there for all three para – sport athletes, apart from the time I lost Fraser during the Team Camp in Stirling. Needless to say Fraser was neither up nor down. I found it difficult to concentrate on the First Minister’s presentation and the launch of the Team Scotland uniforms because Fraser had gone AWOL. Tagging on to the tennis squad was a better option after the baton relay than my company.

Some of the accessible areas for the Para – athletes were brilliant. Seating at Tollcross could not have been better and for our enthusiastic young swimmers it was amazing to get front row seating on pool deck. At Ibrox for the rugby 7s the same situation applied and entry and egress were barrier free. When we visited venues for sports such as boxing and weightlifting, the coaches and athletes from Achieve 2014 were more than happy to share their knowledge and contribute to our learning. SDS was able to offer a Disability Inclusion Workshop for Waves 1 and 2 on each of the two weeks of the Games and all the Achieve 2014 participants contributed positively to those sessions. SDS has made some new contacts through this project and the profile of Para – sports has been raised considerably amongst our leading young athletes, players, coaches and mentors. The Commonwealth Games are described as the Friendly Games but Glasgow 2014 were truly Inclusive Games. Glasgow 2014, Team Scotland and Achieve 2014 had inclusion embedded in their thinking from day one.

During the Games we soaked up the atmosphere of the Games Village and superb venues like the SECC and the Hydro, plus specialist venues like Scotstoun, Ibrox and Tollcross. Judo, wrestling and boxing were outstanding spectator sports and in each instance a first for me. Hockey and squash have progressed incredibly as spectator sports and my two trips to Ibrox for the rugby 7s were a highlight of the Games. Swimming was everything I expected and more and the conversion of the Hydro to a gymnastics venue had to be seen to be believed. I had been to the Hydro to see Del Amitri during Celtic Connections but it was a real step up to watch the leading GB gymnasts win so many medals for their respective Home Nations. Unfortunately athletics at Hampden was not on my schedule but at the Closing Ceremony I managed to take in the surroundings and appreciate the conversion of our national stadium. Glasgow could not have been more welcoming and G2014 could not have done more to make the 2014 Games a success. The more I recall the memories the more I feel incredibly privileged to have been involved in my first Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, because they were the best ever.

Time spent with the athletes, players and coaches of Achieve 2014 were for me the highlights of G2014. The Achieve 2014 boxing squad of Connall, Lee, Stephen and John made a great impression as did coaches Ray and Joe. I recall with great affection our walks along the Clyde walkway between hotel and SECC. Conversations were always about boxing and their commitment to their sport and training was always obvious. Young tennis player Ali Collins and coach Mhairi Brown were offered a quick sparring lesson by the young boxers in the hotel. Unfortunately the session had to be curtailed because our makeshift ring was located outside the room of a sleeping nightshift worker. The session was judged a success and I believe young Ali has now purchased a pair of boxing gloves. 

The young bowlers, cyclists, gymnasts, hockey players, bowlers, netball players, rugby players, shooters, squash players, table tennis players, triathletes, weightlifters and wrestlers in addition to those already mentioned made Achieve 2014 an occasion to remember. Each squad contained great characters. Their coaches were exceptional and together we all benefitted from the experience. Alan Lynn planned and led the programme magnificently and I owe so much to my fellow mentors for their support and encouragement plus of course young Ross from SEARCH who contributed so much to the project. Paralympian David Smith and Gavin Hastings were truly inspirational speakers at the beginning and end of our Games. Hopefully Kayleigh, Fraser and Beth will be inspired to realise their full potential in disability sport as a consequence of being the first SDS nominated athletes on the Achieve programme. Thanks Heather for putting me forward as the SDS nominated mentor. I shall always remember G2014 with great fondness.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Support Wendy and Bob…please

Disability Sport Fife is delighted that two of our key fundraisers, Wendy and Bob Wylie, will be running in the Glasgow Half Marathon on Sunday 5th October 2014 to raise funds for the Association. This husband and wife team are great friends of DSF and have over the years contributed to DSF in so many different ways. Wendy’s brother Graham is an active member of DSF and a DSF ambassador.

Wendy's fundraising page can be accessed from the following link: https://mydonate.bt.com/fundraisers/wendywylie1


Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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2014/2015 programme confirmed

The 2014/2015 DSF calendar of events has now been finalised with support from the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust, Fife Council and sport specific clubs. DSF enjoys the benefits of a Service Level Agreement (SLA) with Fife Leisure and support from Fife Council to deliver quality events in excellent settings throughout the sporting year. DSF is indebted to East Fife Indoor Bowling Club and Beveridge Park Bowling Club for continuing to support the DSF Indoor and Outdoor Championships. Click to access calendar.

DSF has also updated the sessions sheet which details the programme of weekly activities available throughout the sporting year to children, athletes and players with a physical, sensory or learning disability. This schedule is updated on a monthly basis as DSF strives to increase the range and number of options available across Fife to participants with a disability wanting to become physically active or engage in sport

Click to access the August sessions schedule. 
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Another Major Honour for Crossgates Athlete

The Great Britain squad for the BISFed Boccia World Championships to be held in Beijing, China, between 19 and 28 September has just been announced.  Kieran Steer from Crossgates is one of six Scots named in the 10 man British squad.  Kieran is ranked 37 in singles in world boccia and has enjoyed considerable international success in team and pairs boccia plus world junior competitions in the past year.

All three identified players in the BC4 class are from Scotland, Stephen McGuire from Hamilton is currently ranked number 6 and Scotland’s most successful player in this class.  Jamie Docherty from Larbert is the third player in the class and together they are a formidable unit. 

GB Boccia coach Claire Morrison from Dalgety Bay will travel with the team and she been a major influence on Kieran’s progress in performance boccia.  Travelling in support will be Kieran’s mum Lorraine who similarly has had a major influence in his development as one of the country’s leading boccia players and the first player from Disability Sport Fife to be selected for Great Britain. 

The other Scots in the team are Joshua Rowe from Perth (BC2), Scott McCowan from Dundonald, South Ayrshire (BC3) and Patrick Wilson from Peebles (BC3). 

Boccia is one of the fastest growing sports in international disability sport. The game is played indoors on a court roughly the same size as a badminton court and initially was played by wheelchair users with cerebral palsy only.  The BC4 and BC3 classes provide for players with similar functional impairments and the BC1 and BC2 classes are for players with cerebral palsy.  The BC3 players use a ramp to play boccia. 

The results at the World Championships will be taken into consideration when selecting players for the Paralympic Games in Rio in 2016.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Good Luck Para Sport Athletes

Glasgow 2014 will undoubtedly be the Friendly Games but they will also be Inclusive Games. 22 full medal Para – sport events across five sports will be a feature of the 2014 Commonwealth Games programme. More medal events and more high performance disabled athletes than ever before having the opportunity to be part of this great multi sport international occasion.

Team Scotland has selected and prepared with an inclusive ethos from day one. Within the team of selected Scottish athletes there are strong medal contenders. In lawn bowls Scotland finished runners up to home team South Africa at the last World Championships and will be defending the mens triples for physically disabled bowlers which they won in Manchester in 2002. Scotland has potential Para – sport champions in tandem cycling, weightlifting and athletics.

Billy Allan from Cowdenbeath and Michael Simpson from Auchtermuchty will compete for Team Scotland in lawn bowls and attempt to repeat the gold medal winning performance that they recorded against the world’s leading nations at Kelvingrove in Glasgow last summer. Craig Rodgie from Dalgety Bay represented Great Britain at the Paralympic Games in London in 2012 and learned so much from wonderful international multi sports occasion. He cannot wait for Glasgow and the opportunity to represent Team Scotland.

Disability Sport Fife is proud that three of its leading high performance athletes will be competing in Glasgow. Chairman Paul Noble from Glenrothes is also on duty at the Games as an announcer at the aquatics venue and President Richard Brickley from Cupar is one of a small team of selected mentors supporting the next generation of talented young Scottish athletes, players and coaches who are part of the 2014 Achieve programme. 


Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Four Fife Athletes Identified for SDS Athlete Academy

Scottish Disability Sport (SDS) has earmarked 21 athletes to receive funding through the SDS Academy.  The SDS Academy supports individuals who have been identified as athletes with potential to achieve the highest levels in disability sport.  Athletes may use the funding to access resources that help to achieve their goals in performance sport or to assist them to compete in major events at home and overseas.

From the sport of athletics Owen Miller from Dunfermline Track and Field is once again included in the Academy programme.  A strong indoor season and solid early season performances outdoors for his club confirm he is on track to achieve his 2014 goals.   Recently in the Netherlands and at the Mencap Championships in Manchester Owen turned in top class performances.  Also retained in the programme is Derek Rae from Kirkcaldy and Anster Haddies who had an outstanding run in the London Marathon earlier in the year. More recently in Germany, Derek had his international classification of T46 confirmed and won his first track race over 5km at the Berlin Open by a significant margin.

Archer Brad Stewart from Ladybank is also retained on the programme following quality performances early in the season at the Scottish and British Championships.  Visually impaired para triathlete Alison Patrick who has just moved to Dunfermline from West Lothian, is also included in the programme following a nomination for Academy support by Triathlon Scotland.  Alison is a newcomer to Fife, competes with the support of a guide and was recruited to triathlon from athletics as recently as last year.

Well done to the four Fife based athletes who have been selected for the SDS Academy programme for 2014/15.  We shall watch their progress over the months ahead.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Dunfermline Athlete in Fine Form in Manchester

The 2014 Mencap National Learning Disability Athletics Championships were held at the Manchester Regional Arena.  Athletes from all over the UK travelled to the North of England for one of the largest events in the annual calendar organised for performance athletes with a learning disability.  Entries are open to athletes aged 13 and above who have reached the entry standard for their particular event. 

Six Scottish athletes travelled to Manchester for the Championships and returned with nine UK titles. 

22 year old Owen Miller from Dunfermline and Dunfermline Track and Field competed in two events and won the 800m in 2:03.82 finishing well ahead of the field. 

Owen’s other event was the 400m where he finished second in 54.62 behind his GB international team-mate Robert Ferrol from Glasgow. 

Photo: Owen Miller

On this occasion Owen did not compete in his main event 1500m but once again the young Dunfermline athlete has produced quality performances in a major event in UK involving the country’s leading T20 athletes.  Owen is coached by Gemma Nicol at Dunfermline Track and Field.

 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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2014 Hippo Parade Glenrothes

Disability Sport Fife is the Charity identified by the Kingdom Centre Management Committee to be the beneficiary from monies raised during the period of the 2014 Hippo Parade. The Fife Sports and Leisure Trust decorated the DSF Hippo which sits beside the others from nurseries and schools in the town. Supporters may vote for their favourite Hippo on the Kingdom web site and the winning school/nursery can win a cash prize.

The theme of the 2014 Hippo Parade is sport in recognition of the Commonwealth Games coming to Glasgow. DSF has three members involved in Para Sports in Glasgow as members of Team Scotland. Billy Allan Cowdenbeath (bowls) Michael Simpson Auchtermuchty (bowls) and Craig Rodgie Dalgety Bay (swimming).

On Monday 7th July the Kingdom Centre launched a sporting spectacular in recognition of Glasgow 2014. Visitors and shoppers will have the opportunity to participate in a range of quirky activities led by some really fun people. The project is supported by Fife Council and DSF members Derek Rae, Julie Allan and Tanis Murphy represented DSF at the Opening in the Kingdom Centre. The Opening Ceremony was led by Centre Manager Robert Winter and the ribbon cut by the Depute Provost of Fife Councillor Kay Morrison. 
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Achieve 2014 Stirling Camp

Team Scotland’s “Achieve 2014” programme is aimed at the next generation of Scottish Commonwealth Games (CG) athletes and coaches to give them the best chance of performing at their best, at their first multi-sport event, to give them a chance to learn from the Commonwealth Games environment before it is their turn to represent their country with distinction in the future.

Achieve 2014 is inclusive, just like Team Scotland, and Kayleigh Haggo S5, Beth Johnson S10 and Fraser Kane S13 were the three young swimmers nominated by SDS to be part of the programme. Alan Lynn from the University of Stirling leads the programme on behalf of Team Scotland and I was privileged to be nominated by SDS and then invited by Alan to join the Achieve 2014 team of eight mentors.



Achieve 2014
seeks to support aspiring athletes and coaches by offering them an insight into the uniqueness of the multi-sport environment. Achieve 2014 athletes and coaches were present at the final Team Scotland Camp in Stirling and had the opportunity to attend Games briefing sessions along with members of Team Scotland and their coaches. Sir Chris Hoy not surprisingly made a huge impact and the First Minister demonstrated his commitment to the Games with a characteristic passionate presentation to the full team and Achieve 2014 personnel. We even had an early viewing of the new Scottish Games uniform.

During the Games Achieve 2014 members will be able to visit Scotland House, attend competition sessions and enjoy a trip to the Athletes’ Village. The programme will be enhanced by educational sessions both before and during the Games. The programme aims to inspire young athletes and their coaches to pursue their performance ambitions and to develop greater awareness of the ethos and values of Team Scotland. A key programme objective is to further develop existing networks and a commitment amongst participants, CGS, Team Scotland and the SGBs.

There were many highlights of our first sustained period together as members of Achieve 2014 at the Team Camp in Stirling. The appearance of the Queen’s Baton Relay was quite something and rubbing shoulders with so many great Scots was a once in a lifetime experience for so many of us. Ranked top in memorable experiences was the impact made by Paralympian and London gold medallist David Smith as the inspirational speaker on Saturday evening. David is a very special athlete with an amazing story to tell. Even those of us who have been in his company before were bowled over by the number of key messages he managed to include in his passionate presentation …… without notes. Achieve 2014 members warmed to David from the start and held on to his every word until the end of his presentation and inspirational video. The final section of the planned programme was deleted to allow Achieve 2014 personnel to chat with David, take photos and learn more about his quite remarkable life story. A great first day and an excellent conclusion.

Kayleigh, Beth and Fraser gained so much from the two days and contributed considerably to the first meeting of Achieve 2014. Thank you Team Scotland, thank you all associated with Achieve 2014 for making the occasion such a memorable inclusive occasion for all concerned.

Photo: Beth, Kayleigh, David and Fraser
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife 10 Pin Bowling

The staging of the 2014 Disability Sport Fife (DSF) 10 Pin Bowling Championships was both a happy and sad occasion. The Championships were once gain held at the Bowlplex in Dunfermline and DSF 10 pin bowling co-ordinator Trish Anderson was pleased how the tournament was organised, the quality of play of the competitors and the size of the entry. The sadness however was that for the first time, the late Bernard Pirie from Glenrothes, who had established the event and acted as Tournament Convener for the past 20 years, was not present. From the early years of the event at the Fraser Bowl in Glenrothes, Bernard played the lead role in DSF 10 pin bowling and his passing away two years ago left a huge gap in the DSF volunteer team.

Hayley Binnie from West Fife Community Support Services was the winner of the Ladies Intermediate Section with a score of 426. The top three women are all skilled carpet, lawn and indoor bowlers and they demonstrated the extent of their skills by recording quality scores in the Ladies Open League. Roberta Buchan from Central Fife CSS finished third with 321, Wendy Thomson from East Fife CSS finished second with 336 and one of Fife’s leading all round athletes, Tanis Murphy from East Fife CSS lifted the title with an excellent score of 348. The top two finishing positions in the ramp section were occupied by bowlers Morag Wilson from East Fife CSS who finished second with 226 and Elaine Potter from East Fife CSS who retained her Fife title with a score of 281.

The Mens Intermediate Section was a close run affair where Steven Wynne from Dunfermline finished in third place with 324, Robert Mair from West Fife CSS finished second with 331 and the title went to East Fife CSS player, Ian Muir, with a score of 341.

The Mens Open section was as always closely contested. Craig Donaldson from Central Fife CSS is a past Fife 10 pin bowling champion and arguably the leading carpet, lawn and indoor bowler in Fife. At the Bowlplex this year Craig had to settle for third position with a score of 364, 4 points behind another past champion and Fife all rounder, Tom Reddington from Central Fife CSS. Graham Nuttall from Markinch was crowned champion with a total score of 380.

Disability Sport Fife is indebted to Trish Anderson, Community Support Worker, East Fife CSS for taking on the role as Tournament Convener in the absence of the late Bernard Pirie. The DSF 10 pin bowling league and Championships play an important part in the lives of Fife athletes of all levels of ability with a learning disability across Fife. DSF is delighted that the 2014 Championships were such a great success. Bernard would be delighted that everything he worked so hard to establish is being sustained by a new team of DSF ten pin bowling personnel.

Photo: Wendy Thomson East Fife CSS who finished Runner up in the Ladies Open League.

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife International Swimmer Acknowledges Supporters

Young Lucy Walkup from Glenrothes and Carnegie Swimming Club has just returned from the 11th European Swimming Championships in Saransk in Russia. The GB swimmer had a very heavy schedule, competing in eight individual events, contesting five individual finals plus three team relays. The young Disability Sport Fife teenager arrived home exhausted but justifiably thrilled with her performances. “I didn’t realise how frustrating it is being 4th ……….. next time I shall be on the podium” An early quote from the young Fife swimmer on her return home.

Lucy is one of the established members of the GB Deaf Team and she was happy with how she had coped with the challenges of this most recent international competition. Lucy is a model team member and she thoroughly enjoyed being able to renew friendships with friends/competitors from Germany, Portugal, Russia and Belarus.

Lucy had the additional challenge of working with new GB coaches and management team and was keen to acknowledge the support she received in the past from former coach Angela Holmes and assistant coach Martin Lee from Fife, himself a GB deaf swimmer.

Lucy is a specialist breaststroke swimmer and in her three breaststroke events she finished in 4th place. In the 50m and 200m she set personal best times and new British records.

In the 50m breaststroke she missed out on a medal by 0.13 seconds. Lucy’s final placings in butterfly were 11th in 50m and 6th in 100m. In her freestyle programme Lucy finished 10th in 50m with a new personal best time and 13th in 100m. In her final event the 200m IM she was placed 7th.

Lucy was delighted to gain her first team European medal when as a member of Team GB she finished 3rd in the 4x100m freestyle. In the other two relays of which she was a member, Team GB finished in 4th place.

In all of her breaststroke events Lucy finished behind the same swimmers from Russia, Belarus and Ukraine indicating how much she has improved as an international competitor, after only a few years of international swimming. Each of these three Easter European countries dominates sport for sensory impaired swimmers and Lucy should be fiercely proud of her achievement.

Understandably the travel to and from Russia was unbelievably tiring and logistics at times were a major challenge. Another international experience over and yet another huge improvement in performance for the young Fife swimmer. Lucy pays tribute to the many supporters who have been behind her all the way and she is now looking forward to the World Championships in 2014. Lucy acknowledges the constant support she receives from coaches John Szaranek, Morag Mitchell and Ali McKilligan at the Carnegie Swimming Club and of course her fellow swimmers who are always a source of enthusiasm and encouragement.

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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UK titles for Fife Visually Impaired Bowlers

Maria Spencer form Dunfermline is a reigning singles world champion in her class for visually impaired bowlers. Maria added another championship to her roll of honour by winning the gold medal and the Bank of Scotland Trophy at the B.A.S.R.A.B. UK British Singles Bowls Championships held at Kelvingrove in Glasgow, venue for the 2014 Commonwealth Games. Maria won the ladies B3 singles section and was presented with the trophy by John Wilson, Team Manager of the Welsh Association of Visually Impaired Bowlers. Maria is coached by Sarah Jane Ewing from Dunfermline who also appears in the picture.

Maria has had an outstanding last few years in lawn bowls at national and international level. Maria’s success has extended to Scottish and British Blind Bowls competitions and Pan Disability Bowls events organised by Disability Sport Fife and Scottish Disability Sport.

At the recent Fife Championships Maria finished runner up to Martin Hunter from Burntisland who retained his Fife title in the mixed open singles section. 

Maria will head to Aberdeen on 6 September as a member of the Fife team to defend her Scottish singles title at the Scottish Disability Sport Lawn Bowls Championships.

Also winning gold in Glasgow was Andy Munro from Leslie who is a member of Leslie Bowling Club but also bowls as a member of the Kirkcaldy Blind Bowlers at Fair Isle Bowling Club. Andy was crowned singles champion in the B4 category at the UK Championships and became another Fife performance bowler to excel in a major competition. Andy won three of his four games in a round robin tournament and had a better shots difference than his opponents. Like Maria, Andy has been bowling for many years but only joined the Kirkcaldy Blind Bowlers in 2011 when his sight started to deteriorate.

Photo: John, Maria and Sarah Jane

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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International Success for Fife Boccia Player

Boccia player Kieran Steer from Crossgates continues to turn in quality performances on the big occasion. Kieran’s most recent international event was the BisFed World Open in Povoa in Portugal in June.

Partnering Stephen McGuire and Evie Edwards he won a silver medal for Team GB, just missing out on a gold medal in a thrilling match against Hungary. The final match score was 3 to 2 demonstrating clearly how close Kieran and his team mates were to winning a gold medal.

Kieran was satisfied with his overall play but being the determined competitor he is, he strives for continuous improvement. In the BC4 singles competition Kieran finished 14th overall.

The young Disability Sport Fife player is enjoying a remarkable year and it is now fingers crossed in the run up to the selection announcement for the Boccia World Championships in Beijing in September.

Yet again Kieran was supported by mum Lorraine who has been with him at every step of the way as he has progressed from the novice sportsman who attended the Disability Sport Fife Junior Sports Festival while a pupil at Beath High School to gaining selection for the GB squad preparing for Rio in 2016. Kieran is coached by Team GB Performance Coach, Claire Morrison from Dalgety Bay. Well done Team Kieran…..

Photo: Claire, Lorraine and Kieran

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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International Success for Fife Athlete

Athlete Derek Rae from Kirkcaldy and Anster Haddies has recently returned from competing in his first international 5K track race at the Berlin Open. Attendance at the event completed the final phase of Derek securing an international disability sport classification.

Derek is now on the ranking lists of the International Paralympic Committee athletics section. Derek’s classification was confirmed as T46 and by securing this classification he will now be considered for selection for Team Great Britain in the future. Derek’s ambition is to compete in a Paralympic Games and his time of 16 mins and 40 secs. and a race win by around 20 secs. will have enhanced his chances of realising his dream. Derek will however be the first to admit he has a long way to go and is grateful to British Athletics for all the support received in enabling his involvement in the Berlin event.

Prior to heading off to Berlin Derek had a fine run in the Black Rock 5 finishing in a time of 24:42. This run was 45 secs improvement on last year and secured him 13th place in the event. Derek was also a participant in the Ravenscraig Park Mile winning the May race in a time of 4:55 and securing a third place spot in June in 4:56. Future events for the Disability Sport Fife athlete include the Crieff 10K in July, Ceres 8 in August, Stirling 10K in September and the Glasgow Half Marathon in October. 

Last year Scottish Athletics provided Derek with the opportunity to run in the Frank Duffy 10 mile in Dublin and he hopes to compete again in that event in August this year.

Derek has made considerable progress since Ron Morrison and Don Macgregor from St Andrews and Fife AC took over responsibility for his coaching. The London Marathon of 2015 is his major focus following his personal best time at the 2014 event. Now that he has an international classification of T46 he will be able to compete in the IPC section of the marathon against many of the world’s leading marathon runners. Derek was one of many proud Fife baton bearers and his run in Freuchie was another highlight of this very talented athlete’s career to date.

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Update 3 of DSF Summer Holiday Provision

Disability Sport Fife Summer is pleased that Summer Holiday Provision has increased considerably this year. The DSF Partnership with the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust has never been stronger for the first time two of the most popular sessions for teenagers and adults with a learning disability will run for almost the entire holiday period. Also for the first time athletics, badminton and racquet sport sessions will operate for longer periods this summer. Registered participants may continue to attend and interested newcomers should contact Norma or Richard in the Disability Sport Fife Office in the Michael Woods Sports and Leisure Centre.

Badminton & Racquet Sports - Coach (Alex Bird)

Mondays Michael Woods Sports & Leisure Centre

19.00-20.00 hrs Racquet Sports coaching

20.00-21.00 hrs Badminton coaching

Sessions finish Monday 23 June

Sessions restart Monday 28 July

 

Athletics Coaches (Pamela Robson & Kelly Braid)

Tuesday Pitreavie Athletics Centre, Dunfermline

16.30-17.30 hrs

Sessions finish 8 July

Sessions restart 19 August

 

Athletics Coach (Pamela Robson)

Wednesday Michael Woods Sports & Leisure Centre

16.30-17.30 hrs

Sessions finish 9 July

Sessions restart 20 August

 

Swimming Coach (Kathy Bijak)

Wednesdays Michael Woods Sports & Leisure Centre

Finishes Wed 25 June 2014

Restarts Wed 20 August

New time from 20 August – 13.15-14.15 hrs

 

Multi sports sessions for teenagers and adults with a learning disability (age 15+)

Wednesday Michael Woods Sports & Leisure Centre

Term finish 25 June (normal session time 19.30-21.00)

Holiday provision 2 & 9 July (new time of 18.00-19.30)

Holiday break 16 & 23 July (no sessions)

Holiday provision 30 July, 6 & 13 Aug (new time of 18.00-19.30)

New term start 20 August (normal session time of 19.30-21.00)
 

Multi sports sessions for teenagers and adults with a learning disability (age 15+)

Thurs (10.30-12.00) Michael Woods Sports & Leisure Centre

Term finish 26 June

Holiday provision 3 & 10 July

Holiday break 17 & 24 July (no sessions)

Holiday provision 31 July, 7 & 14 August

New term starts 21 August
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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2014 Fife Lawn Bowls Championships

 

The Beveridge Park Bowling Club yet again hosted the Disability Sport Fife (DSF) annual Lawn Bowls Championships for players with a physical, sensory or learning disability. During the morning session players with a learning disability of all levels of ability, contested one of five individual single hand competitions and in the afternoon session there were three sections for physical and visually impaired bowlers. Participants were playing for individual Fife titles but for some it was an opportunity to challenge for a place in the Fife team for the Scottish Championships to be held at the Westburn Park in Aberdeen on Saturday 6 September.

The all West Fife Community Support Services (CSS) final in the womens intermediate section for players with a learning disability resulted in a win for Christine Bannister over Hayley Binnie by 6 shots to 3. The womens open for players with a learning disability involved the return to competitive bowls for Fife’s most successful female bowler, Pamela Mitchell from West Fife CSS, following a lengthy period of illness. Pamela from Headwell BC, won her first title in several years with a 9 shots to 4 victory over reigning champion, Wendy Thomson from East Fife CSS. Pamela, widely regarded as one of the most popular Fife bowlers, was welcomed back to the Fife Championships by fellow bowlers and officials. Wendy continues to progress as a competitive bowler since joining her local bowling club in St Andrews.

The mens intermediate (2) section for players with a learning disability resulted in a win for Stuart Melville of West Fife CSS over Wayne Moreland from East Fife CSS by 10 shots to 7. The mens intermediate (1) section was an all East Fife CSS affair with Charlie Porter defeating Jimmy Ramsay by 7 shots to 4 to win his first Fife title. The mens open section for players with a learning disability determines the players who will represent Fife at the Scottish Championships and in the 3rd and 4th place play off, Craig Donaldson from Central Fife CSS defeated Gary Handyside from West Fife CSS by 7 shots to 5 to collect the bronze medal. The final involved Darryl Stewart from the Abbeyview Club and Gary Lindsay from East Fife CSS. Gary is one of the most improved bowlers in Fife and he demonstrated that conclusively by defeating Darryl by 8 shots to 3 in the final to lift his first ever Fife singles lawn bowls title. This result broke the Stewart/Donaldson domination of the mens open title and emphasised the strength in depth in competitive mens bowls for players with a learning disability.

In the mens short rink for wheelchair users, Ian Green from Central Fife CSS defeated Geoff Reid from the same CSS to win the title by 10 shots to 2. In the mens restricted section, Wullie Harrison from Central Fife CSS was the in- form player throughout, but in the final he was pushed all the way by Kenny Dow from Central Fife CSS, before winning narrowly by 5 shots to 3.

The mixed open section final involved reigning champion Martin Hunter from Burntisland and visually impaired bowler Maria Spencer from Dunfermline. Maria has just returned from winning the UK title in her class at the British Championships held at Kelvingrove in Glasgow. Martin just missed out on a place in the Scottish team for the Para Sport section of the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow but he retained his Fife title by 6 shots to 2. Third place in this section was won by Eleanor Clark from Kirkcaldy.

Following the Championships it was announced that the following players have qualified to represent Fife at the Scottish Championships in Aberdeen:

Eleanor Clark (Kirkcaldy), Martin Hunter (Burntisland), Maria Spencer (Dunfermline), Wullie Harrison (Central Fife CSS), Neil Laughlin (Central Fife CSS), Kenny Dow (Central Fife CSS), Darryl Stewart (Dunfermline), Craig Donaldson (Central Fife CSS), Gary Lindsay (East Fife CSS), Gary Handyside (West Fife CSS), Pamela Mitchell (West Fife CSS), Tanis Murphy (East Fife CSS), Julie Allan (East Fife CSS) and Wendy Thomson (East Fife CSS).

Additional bowlers who were unable to compete in this year’s championships because of other commitments may be added to the Fife team.

Photos:

Mens open Champion - bowlers with a learning disability - Gary Lindsay

Open Physically disabled Champion - Martin Hunter
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Badminton Workshop Two

Workshop Two in the series of Badminton Workshops promoted by Disability Sport Fife and Badminton Scotland was held at Lochgelly HS courtesy of the Rector and staff of the school. The purpose of the programme is to provide information and ideas to Workshop attendees on how to deliver badminton to children, young people and adults with different impairments. Each Workshop is led by Jane Russell of Badminton Scotland and content and format are collaboration between DSF and the Scottish Governing Body.

Workshop Two was attended by staff from Lochgelly HS, Balwearie HS, Glenrothes HS, Madras College and West Fife CSS. Participants were introduced to a series of sports development practices covering warm up and skill development. Practices were introduced through games and fun activities appropriate to the needs of learners with physical, sensory or learning disabilities. It is hoped that as a consequence of the programme more participants will attend DSF weekly sessions and consider participating in the annual Fife Championships organised by Disability Sport Fife.

DSF is planning a third workshop for the East of Fife after the summer holidays and interested participants should contact the DSF office to register an interest or for further information. DSF is currently negotiating a grant from the Big Lottery to support member organisations who attend the Workshops in significant numbers to access badminton equipment to support their learning practices.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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DSF Summer Holiday sports provision

DSF sports sessions come to an end on the week ending Friday 27th June. DSF is delighted to report that in addition to the two multi sports at the Michael Woods Sports and Leisure Centre (Wednesday evening and Thursday morning) athletics and racquet sports sessions will be available during July and August as follows:

Start and finish dates are as follows:   

Badminton & Racquet Sports – Coach (Alex Bird)

Mondays                   

Michael Woods Sports & Leisure Centre

19.00-20.00 hrs

Racquet Sports coaching

20.00-21.00 hrs 

Badminton coaching

Sessions finish 

Monday 23 June

Sessions restart 

Monday 28 July

 

Athletics

Tuesday                     

Pitreavie Athletics Centre, Dunfermline

16.30-17.30 hrs  

Coaches (Pamela Robson & Kelly Braid)

Sessions finish  

8 July

Sessions restart   

19 August

Wednesday                

Michael Woods Sports & Leisure Centre

16.30-17.30 hrs

Coach (Pamela Robson)

Sessions finish

9 July

Sessions restart  

20 August

The restart dates for all other sessions will appear on the website over the next couple of weeks. The dates and times for multi sport sessions during July and August appear on the June news section of the website.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Scottish Performance Swim Meet Aberdeen

Fife’s leading disabled performance swimmers were in action at the Scottish Disability Sport/Scottish Swimming National Performance Swim Meet at the Aquatics Centre at the Aberdeen Sports Village.  With Lucy Walkup of Carnegie SC away on GB duties at the European Deaf Championships in Russia, it was left to Craig Rodgie, Stefan Hoggan, Craig Smith, Oliver Carter and young Steven McCormick to fly the flag for Fife.

Paralympian Craig Rodgie from Dalgety Bay and the Edinburgh University Swim Squad recorded times of 1:08.96 for 100 backstroke and 2:08.74 for 200 freestyle on his way to two gold medal  swimming performances. Craig now heads overseas to a club training camp before heading to Glasgow with Team Scotland to compete in the Para Sport  S14  200 metres freestyle at the Commonwealth Games.

Oliver Carter from Cupar and District SC improves with every competition. In Aberdeen he swam second in 400 metres freestyle in 5:00.67 and third in 200 IM in 2:57.45. The young Bell Baxter HS pupil rounded off his meet with a time of 1:09.16 for 100 freestyle.

Stefan Hoggan from Auchtermuchty and Carnegie SC won the 100 metres butterfly in 1:12.86 and finished third in 100 metres freestyle in 1:11.93. Stefan also recorded a time of 31.54 for 50 metres freestyle.

Young Craig Smith from Glenrothes and FINS swimming club, competing in the S8 class, won bronze in 400 metres freestyle in 5:52.58 and recorded times of 1:19.87 for 100 metres freestyle and 36.32 for 50 metres freestyle. FINS team mate Steven McCormick from Kirkcaldy travelled to Aberdeen to be classified for the first time and came away with excellent times for 100 metres backstroke of 1:56.77, 100 metres breaststroke 2:33.32 and 100 metres freestyle 1:42.53.

Fife has a crop of young disabled swimmers coming up through the ranks who hopefully will be as successful as established performers like Craig, Stefan and Lucy who have flown the flag so successfully for Disability Sport Fife and Scotland over the past few years.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Team Sloan Support for DSF

Callum Sloan from Dunfermline is an emerging all round sportsman in disability sport in Fife. Callum is learning to swim at the Carnegie Leisure Centre but his first love is athletics and he always wants to go fast. The young wheelchair sprinter improves his times with every race and outings this year at the Scottish Junior Championships at Grangemouth and Fife Championships at Pitreavie suggest he has a bright future in athletics.

Callum attended a classification clinic earlier this year organised by Scottish and British Athletics and was given a national classification of T53. This decision has inspired the young Disability Sport Fife member to train with greater determination and enabled him to compare his times with other junior athletes in the same class. Callum’s training diary and record of performances is now one of his prized possessions.

Callum trains and races in a Bromakin wheelchair purchased from the fundraising efforts of the students from the netball club at the University of St Andrews. Callum is coached by DSF athletics coach Pamela Robson at the Michael Woods Sports and Leisure Centre and Pitreavie Athletics Centre. DSF is indebted to Scottish Athletics Para Sport coach Ian Mirfin who travelled over to Fife on two occasions from Glasgow to deliver mini workshops for Callum, coach Pamela and other Fife coaches and parents.

Committed athletes and players from any sport are always supported by significant others and in Callum’s case it is mum Gayle who plays an essential support role for training and competitions. Gayle herself is an enthusiastic runner and recently completed the Baker 10K in Aberdeen but went the extra mile by seeking sponsors to raise funds for Disability Sport Fife. Family and friends rallied to the cause and Gayle raised her target figure which was matched by a donation from husband Andy’s company Dundas Consultants Ltd. In total the Sloan family raised a remarkable £800 for Disability Sport Fife.

Gayle is also considering attending a Scottish Athletics Level 1 coaching course to enable her to contribute quality advice during Disability Sport Fife coaching sessions while at the same time supporting Callum. Team Sloan are very highly respected members and supporters of Disability Sport Fife and their input to the Association has been considerable since they arrived in Fife from Aberdeen.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Craig Wins Ian Watson Trophy

Craig Wins Ian Watson Trophy

Each year at the DSF Track and Field Championships the Ian Watson Memorial Trophy is presented to an athlete who has demonstrated excellence on the track or in field events far and beyond the expectations of the event organisers.

It was a popular decision when Craig Hunter from East Fife Community Support Services was awarded the Trophy because of his outstanding performances in softball throw and shot putt. Craig won the shot putt, threw 28 metres in softball and run a fine 60 metres.

Ian Watson was a member of the Robert Gough Centre before he passed away and Craig has attended the same centre since leaving Hyndhead School in Buckhaven. Craig has always been a fine all round sportsman and this accolade is just reward for several years of involvement in Fife teams and representing East Fife CSS.

Photo: Craig with his Trophy, surrounded by fellow athletes in East Fife CSS. 
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fifth Place for Owen in Holland

The GB Track and Field Team returned to the UK with a total of four medals from the INAS Open European Athletics Championships, which took place in Bergen Op Zoom in the Netherlands. A number of athletes achieved personal best times. This will serve them well when the selectors meet to discuss the team for the 2015 Global Games and the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games. 

This year’s Championships included a very competitive field of 152 athletes from across Europe from 19 countries. The team was selected and managed by the UK Sports Association for People with Learning Disability (UKSA) and was made up of a total of nine athletes from across the UK. Athletes with learning disability are classified as T20 for track events and F20 for field events.

Owen Miller from Dunfermline and Dunfermline Track and Field was placed fifth in the men’s 1500 metres in a time of 4:05.33.

Although not a personal best time Owen was pleased with his performance but felt he is capable of running faster. Owen is coached by Gemma Nicol. Owen will now turn his attention to club meetings and the Mencap Championships in England at the end of the month.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Trust and DSF Work Together to Promote Holiday Sport

For the first time, the hugely popular weekly sports sessions for teenagers and adults with a learning disability at the Michael Woods Sports & Leisure Centre will run throughout the majority of the summer holiday period. This development is in response to requests from individual athletes and families and because the individual session leaders have declared their availability to work over the holiday period. DSF is grateful to the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust for continuing to support the sessions and for agreeing to provide staff and facilities. The sessions are available to registered athletes already attending weekly.

DSF is planning to run additional sessions and details will be communicated via the web site.

Summer Holiday sports provision - Michael Woods Sports & Leisure Centre

Wednesday - multi sports sessions for teenagers and adults with a learning disability (age 15+)

Term finish                 25 June (normal session time 19.30-21.00)

Holiday provision      2 & 9 July (new time of 18.00-19.30)

Holiday break            16 & 23 July (no sessions)

Holiday provision      30 July, 6 & 13 Aug (new time of 18.00-19.30)

New term start           20 August (normal session time of 19.30-21.00)

Thursday (10.30-12.00) - multi sports sessions for teenagers and adults with a learning disability (age 15+)

Term finish                 26 June

Holiday provision      3 & 10 July

Holiday break            17 & 24 July (no sessions)

Holiday provision      31 July, 7 & 14 August

New term starts         21 August


Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife cheers on the Queen’s Baton Relay

The Queen’s Baton Relay is coming to Fife on Thursday 26th June!

Fife Council will be welcoming the baton with a range of community events along the line of route including:

  • 07.30 - The Baton will ‘whizz’ round the track at Knockhill on the Superbikes
  • 08.30 - Crowds will gather in Pittencrieff Park and along the High St in Dunfermline to cheer on the Batonbearers through Dunfermline.
  • 09.30 - Around 100 children will welcome the Queen’s Baton Relay when it makes a morning stop at Dalgety Bay Sports Centre. They will take part in a free run-jump-throw athletics session and will have the opportunity to touch the baton.
  • 10.40 - The baton will be welcomed to Silversands at Aberdour by local primary children and a choir
  • 11.30 - Burntisland
  • 11.45 - The Baton will travel by RNIL up to Kirkcaldy
  • 12.10 -The baton will wind its way through the streets of Kirkcaldy before heading to Glenrothes
  • 12.45 - At Micheal Woods Sports & Leisure Centre in Glenrothes, the finalists of the Going for Gold competition will be battling it out. The annual competition between care homes encourages the elderly to try out a new activity and to keep active. Teams from 58 care homes across Fife are currently battling it out in a “Walk the Commonwealth Step Count Challenge” and are training at New Age Kurling, carpet bowls, boccia, basketball shoots  and other fun sports in preparation for  the final.  The Baton will stop outside Fife House at 13.50
  • 14.00 - Over 150 children from Falkland Primary School and nursery will take part in a cultural-themed dance and Commonwealth Games taster activity session at Falkland Palace.
  • 15.30 - Around 300 people will welcome the baton to Duffus Park in Cupar where a closing ceremony for a local Commonweath Games event will be taking place with Olympic Bronze medallist curler Anna Sloan.
  • 16.30 - See the Baton in Leven along the Promenade and up Scoonie Rd
  • 16.50 - Pittenweem
  • 17.10 - See the Baton at the Fisheries Museum in Anstruther
  • 17.30 - 19.30 - A carnival atmosphere will welcome the Queen’s Baton Relay to St Andrews where people will line the streets to watch a parade travel along South Street, North Street and down to West Sands. They’ll then be encouraged to follow the baton to West Sands for more entertainment and the chance to take part in a record breaking attempt at the world’s biggest ceilidh!

Would you like to be a Guinness World Record Holder?  Here is your chance!

The Queens Baton Relay is coming to St Andrews on June 26th at 18.20

As part of this celebration we are organising a once in the lifetime event for all to enjoy and take part in.  Along with Kingdom FM we are hosting the Worlds Biggest Ceilidh at West Sands St Andrews.  We need 2000 people there to make it the biggest and best Ceilidh the world has ever seen.

To come along and join in the fun, pick up your FREE ticket at  St Andrews Library, St Andrews Local Office or St Andrews Tourist Information or call 01383 602393. 

The Ceilidh will start at 5.45, with dancing and singing with the Dancing Feet Ceilidh Band.  At 6.45 we will welcome the Queens Baton in to the arena and then between 7.00-7.30 we will have the World Record Breaking attempt. 

Come along and join in the fun and dancing, bring your family and friends.  It’s going to be a great evening!

For more information check out the website www.fifedirect.org.uk/queensbatonrelay



Fife Swimmer selected for Team Scotland

At Stirling Castle Paralympian Craig Rodgie received the news that he has been selected to represent Team Scotland in Para sport swimming at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.

Craig is coached by Chris Jones, head coach of the Edinburgh University swim Squad. Craig will compete in the S14 200 metres freestyle on Saturday 26th July.

Craig captained the Disability Sport Fife swim team to the national team title in Glasgow and inspired so many of his fellow team members to personal best performances. Glasgow 2014 has been his major focus since London 2012 and his performances this year have been high quality and consistent. Once he had registered a consideration time it was a matter of waiting and hoping that the selectors considered him worthy of a team place. The Dalgety Bay man not surprisingly was not to be disappointed.

Craig has a busy period ahead as he prepares for the Commonwealth Games. Mid June he will swim in Aberdeen and sustain his loyalty to the SDS swimming programme before heading off to Tenerife for a two week training camp, with the other members of the Edinburgh University Swim Team who have also qualified for Team Scotland. On his return he will have one week’s home training before heading to Aberdeen for the Holding Camp and final preparations prior to the Commonwealth Games.

Craig is the third Disability Sport Fife member to be selected for Team Scotland. Michael Simpson (Auchtermuchty) and Billy Allan (Cowdenbeath) were previously selected for the Team Scotland Para bowls team.

Photo: Paralympian Andrew Lindsay (left) from Fife awarding the Leslie Inglis Trophy (swimmer of the year) to Craig at the recent  DSF Awards evening.

> For more information on Craig Rodgie please view our Athletes Profile Section
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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DSF Benefits from Hippo Parade 2014 

The Annual Hippo Parade in the Glenrothes Town Centre is a hugely popular occasion. The Centre Management encourage schools and nurseries to decorate mini and maxi hippos with the chance of winning a £500 prize. The hippos remain on display within the Town centre and the public are invited to donate towards the charity identified to be the major beneficiary of the 2014 Parade.

2014 has been identified as a year of sport in Scotland and not surprisingly the theme of the 2014 Hippo Parade is sport. Schools and nurseries from throughout the town decorated their hippos in all sorts of Commonwealth colours and with images relating to Glasgow 2014. The standard was exceptionally high across the junior and senior age groups.

Disability Sport Fife was identified as the recipient charity for proceeds raised in 2014 from the Hippo Parade and the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust took on the responsibility of decorating the DSF hippo. Lindsay Mackie from the Cowdenbeath Leisure Centre took the lead on behalf of the Trust and what a brilliant hippo she created. Every sport possible was identified on the colourful hippo, demonstrating the wide range of indoor, outdoor and water based activities that are available across the Leisure Trust facilities. The decorated hippo was delivered safely to the town centre to sit proudly beside those from local playgroups and schools.

The launch of the Hippo Parade was in the Glenrothes Town Centre on Thursday 12 June and the Yvonne Gray Dance School played a key role in encouraging school and playgroup representatives to be active as often as possible. The picture of the hippo and FSLT staff was taken outside the Michael Woods Centre before the hippo headed to the Town Centre to sit alongside the other hippos from throughout the town. 
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Inclusive Highland Games in Cupar

The Organising Committee of the 2014 Cupar Highland Games introduced an 800 metres race for athletes with a learning disability into the schedule for the 2014 Games at the Duffus Park. Working in partnership with Disability Sport Fife, the event was publicised throughout Scotland and although numbers were small in the first year, the race was judged an outstanding success. This was the first occasion that a race exclusively for athletes with a disability has been included in a Highland Games schedule.

Race back markers were Sam Fernando (Gateside) and Maurice Paterson (Wormit) of Fife AC. Front runner was Atlanta Crawford (Kircaldy) with Alex Fisher (Kirkcaldy), Philip Callander (Dunfermline) and Carl Fuhrmann (Aberdeen) receiving mid table generous starts from the handicapper/starter.

Carl led from the start and despite a determined effort by back marker Sam, crossed the line first to become the first winner of this unique event.  Sam Fernando took second place ahead of Alex Fisher who overtook Phillip Callander on the home stretch to finish third.

The Games organisers plan to include the race again on the 2015 programme and partner DSF will hope to encourage more athletes to take part. Participants have to have successfully run an 800 metres under 2:45 for men and 3:15 for women.

Photo: Atlanta Crawford, Phillip Callander, Sam Fernando, Carl Fuhrmann, Alex Fisher and Maurice Paterson.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Top Fife Junior Athlete

Sam Fernando from Gateside and Fife AC was voted the leading junior athlete at the 2014 Disability Sport Fife Track and Field Championships. The young Bell Baxter HS third year pupil recorded the fastest junior time for 1500 metres and 100 metres.

Athletics official Gil Cochrane from Kirkcaldy has been a loyal servant to the DSF Championships for almost 20 years. 

This year he presented the Gilbert Trophy to DSF to be awarded each year to the leading Fife junior athlete. Sam was the first recipient.

The Gilbert Trophy was presented to Sam at the Cupar Highland Games by Past Chieftans, Paralympian Caroline Baird and John Hendry one of the founder members of Fife AC. 
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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2014 Brodie Gala

The Brodie Gala for pupils with additional support needs is the longest running event in the calendar organised by Disability Sport Fife. The traditional home is Cupar pool and once the gala was supported by the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust. Officiating duties were as always in the hands of Scottish Swimming officials Fiona Cunningham, Tom Foster, Colin Wilson, Jim Drummond and Margaret Robson.

The first Brodie Gala was held in 1976 and team champions this year were the swimmers from Kilmaron School in Cupar for the third year in succession and the eleventh occasion overall. The points difference between winners and runners up was only 6 with John Fergus School from Glenrothes recording their highest finishing position ever in second place. Hyndhead School from Buckhaven finished in third place. Kilmaron won the Inter School relay with a combined Kilmaron/Hyndhead team taking second just ahead of John Fergus.

The Trophy Race is open to the leading swimmers in each school and Felix Taylor won the event for the second year in succession. Fraser Arnott from Kilmaron was second with Connor Jack from John Fergus third. Felix rounded off an excellent day with wins in the open 25 metres freeestyle and backstroke.

Other individual race winners were Ewan Foreman (John Fergus), Christopher Dobbie (Hyndhead), Cameron Robertson (Hyndhead), Keri Liddle (Kilmaron), Aiden Hutchison (Kilmaron), Rosie Rees (John Fergus), Cameron Hay (John Fergus), Cameron Robertson (Hyndhead), Daniel Ballantine (Kilmaron), Fraser Arnott (Kilmaron).
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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West Fife Team Champions

The 2014 Disability Sport Fife Track and Field Championships were held at the Pitreavie Athletics Centre in Dunfermline and for the first time in many years in sunshine for most of the day. 170 junior and senior athletes from East Fife CSS, West Fife CSS, Central Fife CSS, Scottish Autism, Balwearie HS, Woodmill HS, Bell Baxter HS, Madras College and Lochgelly HS Sports Club participated. The programme included 80 track and 47 field events for athletes of all levels of ability with a physical, sensory or learning disability. 

West Fife Community Support Services retained the senior team trophy with 72 points, six points ahead of East Fife CSS. Woodmill HS DAS were the winners of the new Schools Team Trophy with 72 points, four ahead of Madras College DAS and nine ahead of Balwearie HS DAS. The Inter Schools competition was one of the highlights of the 2014 Championships. 

The outstanding athlete of the Championships was Atlanta Crawford from Kirkcaldy who set two Fife records in shot and long jump and also won the women’s open 100 metres. Atlanta was awarded the Lita Allan Memorial Trophy. Philip Callander was voted top senior male athlete for his performances in 100 metres, 200 metres, long jump and relay and was awarded the Ben Mills Trophy. Scottish Athletics official Gil Cochrane presented DSF with a new trophy this year to be awarded to the leading junior athlete of the Championships.  The first recipient was Sam Fernando from Bell Baxter HS DAS who had wins in 1500 metres and 100 metres. The Ian Watson Memorial Trophy was awarded to Craig Hunter of East Fife CSS for his fine performances in the shot and softball throw.

Derek Rae from Anster Haddies ran a personal best of 4.40 for 1500 metres before he heads off to Germany for the Berlin Open and the opportunity to secure an international classification for disability sport. Wheelchair athlete Jonny Brown won his first ever Scottish medal at the recent Scottish Championships at Grangemouth and in his first Fife Championships he completed the throws double with personal best performances in shot and discus of 3.22 metres and 10.44 metres. Wheelchair track athlete Callum Sloan from Dunfermline and McLean Primary completed a Fife double, following his success at the Scottish Junior Championships, with wins over 60 and 100 metres in 24.0 and 35.2 seconds.

Balwearie HS won four of the junior relays and honours were shared between East and West CSS in the senior relays. Lochgelly HS Sports Club won the clubs relay comfortably.

The Fife team for the Scottish Championships to be held almost certainly  in Perth on Wednesday 10th September will be selected from the results recorded by Fife athletes. The Championships are supported by the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust and also this year by Wendy and Bob Wylie who completed a series of fund raising challenges in 2013 to raise funds for Disability Sport Fife.

Photo: Some of the West Fife CSS team of athletes and staff who won the team trophy.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Leading Championships Athletes

Atlanta Crawford from Kirkcaldy and Philip Callander from Dunfermline were judged the top athletes at the 2014 Disability Sport Fife Track and Field Championships held at the Pitreavie Athletics Centre and were awarded the Lita Allen Memorial Trophy and Ben Mills Trophy respectively.

Atlanta set a new Fife record for Shot of 7.48 metres and improved on her own record set in 2013 of 6.19 metres. She also set a new long jump record of 4.09 metres and in doing so removed a record set by Tracy Scott back in 1985. Atlants rounded off her day with a win in 100 metres and relay.

Philip won the 100 metres, led his team to a win in the Team competition and had top three finishes in long jump and 200 metres.

The Championships are supported by the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust and also this year by Wendy and Bob Wylie who completed a series of fund raising challenges in 2013 to raise funds for Disability Sport Fife. 
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Kintore Trophy Winners

The 2014 Disability Sport Fife Track and Field championships at Pitreavie offered an opportunity for some swimmers and staff who were members of the victorious Fife swim team to pose for a photograph with the magnificent Kintore Trophy and they took full advantage. Team Fife finished ahead of the West of Scotland at the Scottish Senior Championships for Swimmers with a Learning Disability at Scotstoun in Glasgow.

Swimmers and staff who were present at the Championships proudly paraded the Trophy around the stadium and soaked up the applause of the 250 to 300 spectators who celebrated their success. 
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Owen off to the Netherlands

The GB Team Track and Field Team will compete at the the 2014 INAS Open European Athletics Championships which will take place on Bergen Op Zoom in the Netherlands and run from 11 - 15th June.

GB athletes hope to produce world-class performances in this International Paralympic Committee sanctioned event. Competition will be tough as the leading 152 athletes with a learning disability from 19 nations compete for Championships medals and titles. Individual GB team members will be hoping to impress the GB selectors planning for the 2015 INAS Global Games and the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games.

The Team was selected by the UK Sports Association for People with Learning Disability (UKSA) and comprises of a total of nine athletes from across the UK.  

Athletes with a learning disability are classified as T20 for track events and F20 for field events.

There are two Scots in the team. Robert Ferrol (Glasgow) had his first taste of medal success at the 7th INAS World Athletics Championships with a Gold for the 4 X 200m relay, a silver at 400m and a further silver in the 4 X 400m relay. Owen Miller (Dunfermline) recorded a personal best time for 1500m of 4:02:20 at the Scottish Indoor Senior Championships and had the honour of being one of the very first athletes to compete at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park when it opened back in 2012. Owen is a member of Dunfermline Track and Field and Disability Sport Fife and is coached by Gemma Nicoll. Robert and Owen will fly down to London together to meet the remainder of the team. 

Team GB team have traditionally performed well in relay events at INAS competitions. At the 7th Inas World Indoor Athletics Championships the GB Team won a Gold medal in the men’s 4 X 200m (1.38.76) and silver in the 4 X 400m (3.45.67) with team members including Robert Ferrol and Owen Miller. 

> For more information about Owen please visit our athlete profiles section

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife Athletes Excel at Scottish Juniors

Young Fife athletes from Balwearie HS, Lochgelly HS, Bell Baxter HS and McLean PS represented Fife at the 2014 Scottish Junior Championships for athletes with a physical, sensory or learning disability at Grangemouth Athletics Stadium. The Championships are organised by Scottish Disability Sport and Scottish Athletics and unfortunately were held in atrocious conditions. The severity of the weather led to the cancellation of the afternoon events and a move indoors for the 60 metres races.

Fife junior athletes recorded a total of 52 top three finishes and within that number there 21 national titles won. Dylan Robertson and Stacy Hynd from Lochgelly HS were double gold medallists in 60 and 100 metres as was Callum Sloan from Mc Lean Primary in T53 wheelchair 60 and 100 metres. Ex Balwearie HS pupil Atlanta Crawford was in great form in winning the girls open shot with a throw of 8.54 metres and the open long jump with a jump of 4.21 metres. Atlanta rounded off excellent championships with a silver medal in the girls open 100 metres in 14.60.

The following Fife athletes won individual national titles. Jennifer Paton Balwearie HS shot, Adam Faulds Balwearie HS shot, Irvin Wilson Balwearie HS, long jump, Dean Bruce Bell Baxter HS 60 metres, Gary Fraser Lochgelly HS 100 metres, Connor Todd Lochgelly HS 60 metres, Ryan Harley Lochgelly HS 60 metres, Brandon Eason Balwearie Hs 100 metres, Alex Evans Balwearie HS 100 metres, Rachel Kellighan Lochgelly HS, 100 metres, Marie Wilson Lochgelly HS 100 metres, Sam Fernando Bell Baxter HS 1500 metres, and Leah Fleming Lochgelly HS 60 metres. Jonny Brown competing as a guest for DSF in his first wheelchair discus event won with a throw of 8.49 metres.

These are the best results by young Fife athletes at the Scottish Junior Championships. Disability Sport Fife now offers training sessions weekly in East, West and Central Fife led by coaches Elspeth Wallace, Pamela Robson and Kelly Braid. Attendances have never been better and the results at Grangemouth indicate that training is paying dividends. The Scottish Senior Track and Field Championships are scheduled for Wednesday 10th September and a number of the older junior athletes will be offered the opportunity to compete for the Fife Team. 
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Lifetime Achievement Award for Bowler

Eleanor Clark from Kirkcaldy is a member of the Scottish disability bowls squad and one of the most successful of Fife’s many talented disabled bowlers.

Over the past three decades, Eleanor has represented Fife and Scotland in lawn bowls, indoor bowls and carpet bowls and amassed a significant number of titles and gained the respect of her fellow bowlers.

In recognition of her contribution to performance blind bowling and Disability Sport Fife in general, Eleanor was presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award at the 2014 DSF Awards Evening. DSF President Richard Brickley described Eleanor as “one of the most loyal and talented performance sportswomen ever to represent Fife”.

Appropriately Eleanor received her award from Paralympic Winter Sports wheelchair curling medallists Aileen Neilson and Michael McCreadie.  


Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Young Volunteers Recognised

Disability Sport Fife is a strong sports organisation because of the quality of its many volunteers. Young volunteers play an important role in the annual programme of events and weekly sports sessions organised throughout Fife. For example the DSF Swimming Championships and the DSF Track and Field Championships, the largest events in the annual calendar, are supported by young sports leaders from Kirkcaldy High School.

Three young volunteers have been recognised by DSF for the role they play each week as volunteers at junior sports sessions in east and central Fife. Bethany Ross and Rachel White play a key support role to children with additional support needs who attend the Castlehill after school multi sport session, organised by Active Schools, Castlehill Primary School and supported by DSF. John Hick supports children with physical and sensory impairments who attend the weekly FUNdamentals session in Glenrothes, organised by DSF.

DSF Awards were presented to Bethany, Rachel and John by the Chair of the DSF Safeguarding in Sport Committee, Maureen McSeveney.

 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Special Recognition Awards

Strong partnerships are one of the main reasons why Disability Sport Fife is such a successful organisation. Since its inception in 1977 DSF has developed links with a significant number of organisations involved with physical activity, including sport. Each year DSF recognises individuals from partner agencies who have gone the extra mile to promote the core values and vision of DSF. Recognised at the 2014 Awards Evening were three outstanding employees of partner agencies.

Jane Russell from Badminton Scotland worked closely with DSF to develop a Festival of badminton in St Andrews earlier in the year and a workshop for coaches willing to deliver badminton sessions to learners with additional support needs.  The workshop programme is ongoing. Jane was a DSF tennis coach for a few years and is always present at the DSF Badminton Championships to assist with scoring.

Kathy Bijack is a swimming teacher with the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust and also a DSF swimming coach. Kathy works with DSF swimmers in Glenrothes and Cowdenbeath and helped to prepare a number of Fife swimmers who were part of the Fife team that won the national team title earlier in the month in Glasgow. The FSLT is a key DSF partner and Kathy is one of a number of staff who support DSF members throughout the sporting year.

DSF enjoys a very special partnership with Active Schools. 

 

Alex Bird is an Active Schools staff member and also a DSF racquet sports and FUNdamentals coach. Alex leads three sessions for DSF every week and they are well attended by children, young people and  adults of all levels of ability. Alex is a very skilled coach who excels in badminton in particular. Alex has supported DSF throughout the year past with a number of badminton projects.

These three coaches are representative of the many coaches in partner agencies who are critical to the DSF support networks. At the Annual Awards Evening, long serving General Management Committee member and Paralympian, Adam Morley handed over the Special Recognition Awards to Jane, Kathy and Alex(L to R)

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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College Lecturer Recognised

Disability Sport Fife has recognised the significant contribution made by Lecturer Craig Martin from Fife College, Elmwood Campus, to the development of disability sport in Fife by awarding him a Service to Sport Award.

For the past decade Craig has encouraged College students with additional support needs to become involved in the DSF weekly programme and annual events. Some students have gone on to represent Fife in national events with considerable success. A small number have been selected for national teams and international events.

Craig has been a member of support staff for Fife athletes and players competing in national and international events. In the sport of golf in particular he has gained national and international experience. 

The Fife open is now the largest golf competition for players with a disability and Craig has been the driving force behind the Open since day one.

Service to Sport Awards recognise individuals who have supported DSF over a significant period. At the DSF Awards Evening it was fitting that DSF Secretary David Thomson handed the prestigious award to Craig. David has been an office bearer with DSF since 1977 and is a past recipient.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Owen Wins Bill Pullar Bursary

Margaret Pullar from Cupar has been a major supporter of Disability Sport Fife for many years. When her late husband Bill passed away she set up a fund to support Fife athletes and players to achieve their goals in sport. Since the Bill Pullar Bursary was introduced a succession of high performance DSF members have benefitted from the fund and the financial support it has offered with training and equipment costs plus travel expenses.

The 2014 winner of the Bill Pullar Bursary is athlete Owen Miller from Dunfermline and Dunfermline Track and Field. Owen is coached by Gemma Nicol at the Pitreavie Athletics Centre and is Scotland’s leading middle distance athlete with a learning disability. In June Owen will travel to the Netherlands as a member of Team GB for the European Championships. 

Early season indoor performances were very positive but the Championships in Holland will be his first major test outdoors. Owen has a PB of just over 4 minutes for 1500 metres and he hopes to run close to the four minute mark sooner rather than later. 

 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Ambassador of the Year

Just over a year ago Disability Sport Fife tragically lost its exceptional treasurer Alec Thorburn in a fatal kayaking accident. In recognition of the very significant contribution Alec had made to the Association as a member of support staff and treasurer, a trophy was commissioned in his name to be awarded each year to a DSF ambassador.

The first recipient of the Alec Thorburn Trophy is Isla Lumsden, Headteacher of Kilmaron School in Cupar. At the 2014 DSF Awards Evening, Isla was presented with the Trophy by Heather Lowden, Education and Coaching Manager of Scottish Disability Sport. This was a popular decision because of Isla’s exceptional commitment to physical activity, including sport, throughout her professional career as a teacher and headteacher.

Disability Sport Fife President Richard Brickley paid tribute to Isla as a DSF champion within Fife Council Education Services and a key DSF fund raiser through Soroptimists International in Dunfermline. Successive generations of pupils and staff from Kilmaron had made a major contribution to the development of disability sport in Fife thanks to Isla’s leadership and encouragement. DSF considers Kilmaron school as a partner
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Classification Workshop 

18 June 2014, 6.00pm - 9.00pm

Michael Woods Sports & Leisure Centre, Glenrothes KY6 2RD

Fee: £30.00

Tutor: Richard Brickley MBE (IPC International Classifier)

This interactive workshop will introduce participants to disability sports classification.

Reference will be made to classification systems used at national and international level for sports such as swimming, athletics, football, bowls, boccia, basketball, etc.

Classification processes and procedures will be addressed and learning will be reinforced through classification scenarios.

With the Commonwealth  Games coming up in Glasgow this is an ideal opportunity to learn about the five Para sports that will feature on the Games programme.

This workshop is a collaboration between  Scottish Disability Sport and Disability Sport Fife

For further information or to book onto the course please contact Norma Buchanan DSF Administrator norma.buchanan@fife.gov.uk or Caroline Lyon SDS Administrator on 0131 317 1130 or admin@scottishdisabilitysport.com
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Juniors Recognised by DSF

The strength of any sports organisation is determined by the quality of its junior members and Disability Sport Fife places great emphasis on the quality and quantity of junior opportunities it offers throughout the sporting year. A number of emerging young talented athletes and players have been recognised by Disability Sport Fife at the recent Awards Evening held in Glenrothes.

Liam Downie from Balwearie HS was identified as footballer of the year following a brilliant series of performances at the DSF 7s tournament for players with additional support needs held at Kirkcaldy HS. Liam led Balwearie HS to an undefeated run and the 2014 Fife title in the three series event and won the award for top goal scorer.

Photo: Liam Downie receives his award from Paralympians Aileen Neilson and Michael McCreadie.
 

Sam Fernando from Bell Baxter HS was voted junior sports person of the year following outstanding cross country runs in the East Series at Peffermill and National Championships organised by Scottish Disability Sport and Scottish Athletics. Sam won the S3 title and recorded the third fastest 3K time of all athletes who competed. Sam also was a member of the successful Fife team that won the Sportshall indoor athletics title for the first time at the Peak in Stirling.

Photo: Sam Fernando receives his award from Clare and Ashley Harper, daughters of the late Aileen Harper, one of Fife’s most successful Paralympians.
 

All rounder Felix Taylor from Kilmaron School in Cupar won the Junior Endeavour Award following a year of successes in Fife events. Felix led Team Kilmaron to another victory at the Brodie Gala in Cupar and was a member of the successful Fife team that won the Kintore Trophy for the first time in 6 years at the national senior championships in Glasgow. Felix has successfully represented his school throughout the year in individual and team sports across Fife.

Photo: Felix Taylor receives his award from Fife multi Paralympic medallist Caroline Baird MBE.
 

Craig Smith from Glenorothes HS and FINS swimming club was voted the most improved swimmer of the year following a run of outstanding swims that culminated in him winning his first British Junior title in 2013 in Sheffield. Craig has taken his consistent form into 2014 with a series of outstanding PBs at Tollcross Aquatics Centre, venue for the 2014 Commonwealth Games. Fife has a long history of producing top class disabled swimmers and Craig is the most promising of the emerging “futures”.

> For more information about Craig please visit our athlete profiles section.

Photo: Craig Smith receives his award from 5 times Paralympian Paul Noble MBE

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Wheelchair athlete of the Year

Kieran Steer from Crossgates is the Disability Sport Fife wheelchair athlete of the year and winner of the Ian McNab Memorial Trophy. This past year has been memorable for the ex Beath HS and now Fife College student. Being selected for the GB Boccia squad preparing for Rio in 2016 was a major achievement in itself but it is success in major competitions that he has confirmed his maturity and readiness to take on the leading boccia players in the world.

European pairs medals in Portugal in 2013 were followed at the end of the year by junior gold in Brazil. A first Scottish singles title in 2014 led to success in Canada wearing GB colours. The challenges have been many and varied but the young Fife player improves with every competition. Kieran is coached by GB coach Claire Morrison from Dalgety Bay and under her watch he has made great progress and reaped the rewards in major championships all over the world. Since the first day Kieran appeared at a Disability Sport Fife junior multi sports festival he has been determined to achieve all that he can in whatever sport he turned to.

It was a thrill for Kieran recently to receive his award from Winter Paralympian Aileen Neilson, skip to the GB wheelchair curling bronze medal team in Sochi and Winter Paralympic medallist from Torino, Michael McCreadie.

> For more information about Kieran please visit our athlete profile section.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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East Fife CSS Win Sports Festival Trophy

The athletes and players from East Fife Community Sports Services have won the Pat Gemmell Memorial Trophy for the first time after a period of dominance by West Fife CSS. The Trophy is keenly contested throughout the three week period of the Annual Fife Sports Festival which in 2014 was supported by Celebrating Fife. Athletes and players not only compete for Fife titles in a wide range of sports but individual points towards their team total.

East Fife CSS members gained points in swimming, archery, badminton, football and unihoc where they have been the dominant force for a number of years. Only two points separated the top teams at the end of the Festival with Central Fife CSS finishing in third position.  To secure the trophy, teams must excel in all sports and not just one or two and that is why the competition between East and West was so close.

East Fife CSS members also excelled at the Disability Sport Fife Awards Evening where Tanis Murphy won one of the two prestigious Access Trophies and Shona Murrie was recognised for her significant contribution to disability sport in Fife over 25 years.

Photo: East Fife CSS staff member Caroline Clunie with Shona Murrie and Tanis Murphy.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Coaches Honoured at DSF Awards

The Disability Sport Fife Awards are an occasion to recognise and applaud the great coaches who week after week throughout the sporting year offer so much support and advice to athletes and players with a physical, sensory or learning disability.

Teacher Pamela Robson from Balwearie HS won the coach of the year award for her work in the sport of athletics with athletes of all ages and abilities. Pamela is a DSF coach who runs three sessions per week in Glenrothes and Dunfermline for ambulant and wheelchair athletes. A number of Pamela’s session participants are starting to emerge as very competent athletes.

Photo: Pamela receiving her award from Heather Lowden of Scottish Disability Sport.

The winners of the emerging coaches awards were DSF volunteer coach Kelly Braid from Kirkcaldy who delivers an athletics session for DSF in Dunfermline at the Pitreavie Athletics Centre, Euan Bell from Falkland who coaches racquet sports to disabled participants in Glenrothes and John Johnstone from Dundee who coaches multi sports in Cupar and Glenrothes. All three young coaches have been involved with DSF for around a year and have made a very significant contribution to the development of disability sport in that time.

Photo: Heather Lowden SDS, Kelly Braid, Ian Bell (father of Euan) and John Johnstone.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Paralympian Leads Fife Team to Victory

2012 Paralympian, Craig Rodgie from Dalgety Bay and the Edinburgh University Swim Squad led the Fife team to victory at the National Senior Championships for swimmers with a learning disability held at Scotstoun Leisure Centre in Glasgow. The mighty West of Scotland were attempting to make it six victories in successive years but the proficient Fife squad picked up team points across all classes and ran out winners with 304 points, 20 ahead of WOS and 35 ahead of Tayside in third place. Fife swimmers won a total of 25 national titles and picked up 45 top three places.

Craig won the Open 100 freestyle, 50 butterfly, 50 back and finished behind fellow GB international Scott Quin from Lothian in 50 breast and 100 Individual Medley.Craig’s swims amassed around 60 points for Team Fife led by managers Neil Frier from West Fife CSS and Alistair Terris of Glenrothes HS. Scott set national records in both his swims.

Young Briony Clark from Glenrothes SC was also in excellent form winning titles in 50 back, 50 butterfly and 50 breast in her class. Pauling Bryson from Lochgelly HSSC won double gold in 50 back and 50 freestyle. Individual national titles were won by Tanis Murphy East Fife CSS, Daniel Henderson Glenrothes HS, Julie Allan East Fife CSS, Mark Walker East Fife CSS, Wayne Halliday East Fife CSS, Michelle Wallace Central Fife CSS, Adam Colmer DSF, Jemma Hancock East Fife CSS, Tristine Rankine West Fife CSS, Iona McFadzen Glenrothes HS, John Lockhart West Fife CSS, Ian Hutchison West Fife CSS, Cara Dunsire Lochgelly HS SC, Jennifer Paton Balwearie HS, Craig Donaldson Central Fife CSS, Angela Robertson Central Fife CSS and Kirk Taylor West Fife CSS. Another swimmer worthy of special mention is Wayne Sammut from West Fife CSS who won four medals in fours swims.

2014 marked the 43rd anniversary of the Scottish Disability Sport (SDS) Championships for senior swimmers with a learning disability.  Back in 1970 the first Championships were held at the Fife Sports Institute in Glenrothes and included swimmers with a physical, sensory or learning disability.  As the disability swimming programme in Scotland developed the Championships were split into two days of Senior Championships and two days of Junior Championships. Tollcross Leisure Centre has become the traditional venue for the event but while the Centre is being prepared for the Commonwealth Games the Championships have moved to Scotstoun.

The success of the Fife team is due to the preparations of the team in the run up to the event. DSF training sessions were available to swimmers in Fife Sports and Leisure Trust pools in East, West and Central Fife and most of the swimmers who were medalists on the day attend these sessions. The presence of juniors from Kilmaron School, Balwearie HS, Glenothes HS and Lochgelly HS contributed to the strength of Team Fife in 2014. In Briony Clark from GASC Fife has an emerging young swimmer with potential and promise. The importance of swimming to East, Central and West Fife CSS members in particular resulted in significant success for their representative swimmers. 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Disability Sport Fife AGM and Awards Evening

The 37th Annual General Meeting of Disability Sport Fife (DSF) was held at the Michael Woods Centre in Glenrothes for the first time.  87 athletes, players, coaches, volunteers, member organisation representatives and families attended.  DSF President, Richard Brickley MBE and DSF Chairman, Paul Noble MBE led the proceedings and presented a very healthy report for the sporting year past plus a strong financial position due to the endeavours of many DSF members and friends. 

There was the traditional reflection on the year past followed by specific details of the successes of Fife individuals and teams who had once again excelled in sports locally, nationally and overseas.  Major highlights of the year were the selection of swimmer Lucy Walkup from Glenrothes for her first Deaflympics in Bulgaria and the selection of Billy Allan (Cowdenbeath) and Michael Simpson (Auchtermuchty) for Para-sport bowls at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow in 2014.  Kieran Steer from Crossgates won his first Scottish boccia title and at the turn of the year travelled to Rio in Brazil to win the world junior BC4 boccia gold medal.  Athlete Owen Miller from Dunfermline was selected for the INAS World Championships in Prague in 2013 and heads off to the European Championships in the Netherlands in June 2014.  Derek Rae from Kirkcaldy will compete in the Berlin Open in June following a 2:44.43 marathon run in London in April.  Emerging juniors included Craig Smith from Glenrothes who won his first British junior swimming title and Sam Fernando from Bell Baxter High School who won the East Series and National Cross Country Championships.  Michael Simpson (bowler), Lucy Walkup (swimmer) and Maria Spencer (bowler) were identified by each of the three Fife Sports Councils as disabled sports persons of the year and Derek Rae was voted the St Andrews Kilrymont Rotary Club disabled athlete of the year.

DSF has enjoyed higher attendances at sports specific and multi-sports sessions across Fife. Entries to Fife Championships are on the increase and more athletes and players than ever before are gaining entry into national championships organised by Scottish Disability Sport.  Both the Chairman and President were proud to report a year of growth and success. There was the emphasis throughout the evening on the need to highlight the opportunities that currently exist for participants of all levels of ability with a physical, sensory or learning disability to engage in sport.

As always the evening was rounded off with the presentation of awards to athletes and players who had excelled in the year past plus coaches and volunteers who continue to contribute so much to the development of disability sport in Fife.  The Access Awards for significant achievements in sport over many years were awarded to Tanis Murphy (East Fife Community Support Services) and Ian Hutcheson (West Fife Community Support Services).  The swimmer of the year and winner of the Leslie Inglis trophy was Craig Rodgie (Dalgety Bay and the Edinburgh University Swim Squad) and the athlete of the year and the winner of the Colin Keay award was Derek Rae (Kirkcaldy and Anster Haddies).  Michael Simpson (Strathmiglo Bowling Club) and Billy Allan (Cowdenbeath Bowling Club) shared the McLean bowler of the year award and the most improved swimmer of the year and winner of the Paul Noble award was Craig Smith from FINS.

Balwearie HS pupil Liam Downie was voted the footballer of the year and won the Penman family award.  Kieran Steer from GB Boccia won the Ian McNab Memorial trophy as the wheelchair athlete of the year.  Visually impaired bowler Eleanor Clark from Kirkcaldy was awarded a Lifetime Achievement (Gary Innes) award for services to disability sport over three decades.  Emerging athlete Sam Fernando from Fife AC and Bell Baxter HS won the Aileen Harper award as junior sports person of the year and the Junior Endeavour award and winner of the Caroline Baird award was Felix Taylor from Kilmaron School.  Barrie Sanderson from West Fife CSS won the senior Endeavour (Tom Donaldson) award and Special Achievements awards were awarded to Steven Thackray (West Fife CSS), Shona Murrie (East Fife CSS) and Michelle Wallace (Central Fife CSS). 

DSF has an outstanding group of coaches at the present time and Pamela Robson from Burntisland was awarded the Campbell award as coach of the year.  John Johnstone (Dundee), Kelly Braid (Kirkcaldy) and Euan Bell (Falkland) were identified as the three emerging coaches of the year and received Ann Swann awards.  Craig Martin, a staff member at Fife College (Cupar Campus) received the Thomson award for his service to DSF over the last 10 years.  Volunteers Bethany Ross and Rachel White who assist at the Castlehill Primary club, plus John Hick (Glenrothes) who assists at the FUNdamentals session in Glenrothes received Anne Hay awards for their special contribution as volunteers to junior sport. 

Alex Bird (Active Schools), Jane Russell (Badminton Scotland) and Kathy Bijak (Fife Sports and Leisure Trust) received Adam Morley awards for their special contribution to DSF as coaches and teachers.  Alec Thorburn was a key volunteer for DSF for many years but just over a year ago he was tragically killed in a kayaking accident.  A special new cup was commissioned by DSF in memory of Alec for the Ambassador of the Year Past. The first recipient was Isla Lumsden, Headteacher of Kilmaron School in Cupar who has made a major contribution to the development of DSF as an advocate and champion of disability sport throughout her professional career.  Kilmaron pupils and staff plus Isla personally have been major fund raisers for DSF.

DSF AGM Award Winners 2014

The 2014 AGM was judged an outstanding success in terms of the number of DSF friends who attended, the healthy report from President and Chairman and the quality of recipients of key awards. Awards were presented by Fife Paralympians, Heather Lowden of Scottish Disability Sport and DSF Management Committee members. Representatives from key partners such as the Order of St John in Fife, Fife Council and the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust were in attendance.

Photo: Award winners 2014 AGM

> DSF Award Winners 2014 (Click to download)

> DSF Annual Report 2014 (Click to download)

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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2015 CPISRA World Games

CP Sport England and Wales have announced that the 2015 CPISRA World Games will be held in Nottingham and run from 7 - 16 August. The plan is to stage a world-class event for athletes and players of all levels of ability and it is hoped that the nations of the world will sign up.

Crispa World Games

The CPISRA 2015 World Games will be held in the heart of the historic city of Nottingham, England with the majority of events taking place in the new iconic Harvey Haddon Sports complex site, with the support of Nottingham City Council.

The competition programme will include athletics (including racerunner and slalom); bowls; football (Under 19); football female; swimming; table cricket and other adapted sports. During the 80s and 90s the CPISRA World Games were the first occasion for Scottish athletes and players with cerebral palsy, head injury or stroke to experience their first international competition. So many great Paralympians started their international careers at the CPISRA World Games.

Over the next few months DSF will start to identify members who might qualify for consideration for the Scottish team. If you are interested or wish additional information please contact Richard Brickley, President of DSF through the DSF Administrator, Norma Buchanan.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Scottish Seniors Swimming Success

2014 marked the 43rd anniversary of the Scottish Disability Sport (SDS) Championships for swimmers with a physical or sensory impairment.  Back in 1970 the first Scottish Championships were held at the Fife Sports Institute in Glenrothes with support from Fife Council and included swimmers with a physical, sensory or learning disability.  As the disability swimming programme in Scotland developed, the Championships were split into two days of Senior Championships and two days of Junior Championships and hosted in pools all over Scotland. 

All of Scotland’s leading physical and sensory impaired swimmers signed up to compete in the 2014 Championships. Lucy Walkup from Glenrothes and Carnegie Swimming club is preparing for the European Deaf Swimming Championships in Russia in June and she had five head to head swims against her GB team mate Danielle Joyce from the West of Scotland. Stefan Hoggan from Auchtermuchty and Carnegie swimming club similarly had several close races against his physically disabled Scottish rivals and left Grangemouth with wins in 50 metres breast and 50 metres butterfly.

Newcomer Mary Wilson, originally from Kirkcaldy and appearing in her first Scottish Championships as a member of Team Fife, won four national titles. The ever improving Craig Smith from FINS won three national titles in a season where he simply keeps on improving with every swim. Katie Muir, Daniel Drury and Michelle Hill picked up double wins in backstroke and freestyle and John Hick, Dawn Aitken and Fraser Wilson won single national titles to round off a fine day of swimming for the Disability Sport Fife swim squad.

Team Fife finished second behind the West of Scotland in the Inter Area team competition and also swam second in the two national relays. Fife juniors Steven McCormick from FINS and Ollie Carter from Cupar and District SC were swimming as guests at the 2014 Scottish seniors and turned in a succession of first class swims 
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Inclusive 2014 Cupar Highland Games

The Members of the Organising Committee of Cupar Highland Games, in partnership with Disability Sport Fife, have included an 800 metres race for male/female athletes with an intellectual impairment on the Games programme for Saturday  14th June 2014.

• the race is open to male/female athletes who have recorded a time below 2:45M/3:15F for 800 metres in the past year.

•  prize money for Games events £50,£40,£25,£10

• in traditional Highland Games fashion, entrants will be “handicapped” (receive a start) according to their submitted times and the time of the fastest runner entered.

All potential participants should register their interest in the first instance with Norma Buchanan, Administrator, Disability Sport Fife, Michael Woods Centre, Viewfield, Glenrothes, Fife KY6 2RD. 

Email norma.buchanan@fife.gov.uk
Tel 03451 555555 Ext 444989 

Richard Brickley MBE, President of Disability Sport and a Past Chieftan of Cupar Highland Games, is available to discuss potential involvement with any athlete prior to registration for this unique inclusive event.

Photo: Maurice Paterson of Fife AC and DSF

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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10th Anniversary Fife Open

For the past 10 years a strong partnership has developed between Disability Sport Fife and Fife College, Cupar. The highlight of the sporting year is always the Fife Open Golf Championships, played over the Elmwood Course and organised entirely by SRUC, Elmwood Campus students.

The students in charge of the 2014 event were extremely professional and despite another year of inclement weather the record entry of 55 golfers enjoyed the occasion immensely. The hospitality extended annually by College students and staff, club caterers and volunteers is renowned throughout the disability golfing world. This year players travelled to Cupar not only from Highland, Lothian, West of Scotland, Forth Valley, Tayside and throughout Fife but from south of the border. 

To mark the 10th Anniversary a Claret Jug was purchased to be contested annually by the player with the best scratch score over 18 holes. Gareth Elms was a very worthy winner with a scratch score of 74 off a handicap of 12.

In the Division one 18 hole competition Lewis Eccles (18), Alistair Hay (15) and Lewis Davey (11) finished first, second and third respectively with scores of 61, 76 and 78. The Division two 18 hole medalists were David Mitchell (24), Andrew Stuart (32) and Steven Thornton (28) with scores of 62, 72 and 73 respectively.

In the Division two 9 hole competition Elliot Auld, Ray Malcolmson and Aden Gallacher finished in the top three positions with scores of 67, 69 and 76. Graham Law, Craig Bernard and Ross McQuilken won the Division one medals with scores of 50, 51 and 54.

A unique feature of the Fife Open are the skills tests introduced for novice players and those not yet ready to compete over 9 or 18 holes. There were four Divisions and the results were as follows:

1st – Bradley Smith, 2nd – Robert Morrison, 3rd - Craig Hunter

1st – Billy Justice, 2nd – Cameron McKendrick, 3rd - Nicola Dow

1st – Craig White, 2nd - Matthew Malcolm, 3rd - Ben Johnstone

1st – Claire Jeffrey, 2nd – Jack Grant, 3rd – Chelsea Logie

(photo: winners of the 9 hole competition with SRUC students and Tracey Wight, Head of Support for Learning, Fife College, Cupar)

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Dunfermline TC  and DSF Partnership

Disability Sport Fife (DSF) in partnership with Dunfermline Tennis Club will once again be offering coaching, games, Cardio tennis and match play for participants with a physical, sensory or learning disability of all levels of ability during the 2014 season.

Dunfermline Tennis Club coaches will be in attendance to support and coach all learners. 

Details are as follows:

  • Summer term: Thursday 15 May, 22 May, 29 May, 5 June, 12 June, 19 June (5pm-6pm)
  • Summer holiday: Thursday 3 July, 10 July, 24 July, 31 July,7 August – (5pm-6pm)

Price per session £2.50

DSF plans to locate one of its two tennis wheelchairs provided by the Dan Maskell Foundation at Dunfermline Tennis Club.

All potential participants should register their interest in the first instance with Norma Buchanan, Administrator, Disability Sport Fife, Michael Woods Centre, Viewfield,  Glenrothes, Fife KY6 2RD.

Email norma.buchanan@fife.gov.uk

Tel 03451 555555 Ext 444989

Norma is the link between DSF members and Dunfermline Tennis Club. Confirmation that a place has been allocated will be communicated to each participant.

DSF is currently in discussions with Falkland Tennis Club to introduce similar opportunities in Central Fife.


Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Young Swimmer Wins Top Award

Teenager Craig Smith from Glenrothes HS and FINS swimming club scooped one of the major awards at the Kirkcaldy and Central Fife Sports Council Awards evening in Kirkcaldy. The Gary Innes Memorial Shield was presented to Craig by Gary’s mother Gloriana in recognition of his exceptional swimming performances over the past few months. Not only did he win his first British Junior title this year but he excelled in the three major swimming meets of 2014. Craig is the most recent in a long line of physically disabled swimmers from Fife to excel in high performance swimming.

At the Scottish Nationals and Scottish Commonwealth Games trials at Tollcross, Craig produced times of 50 Free 33.42, 100 Free 1:14.70 and 400 Free 5:37.98. He followed this up with an improved time for 100 Free of 1.14.40 at the British Championships & English Commonwealth Games trials. The third and final occasion was the British Para Swimming International where he clocked times of 50 Free 35.18, 100 Free 1:13.85 and 400 Free 5:31.36. In 100 and 400 freestyle specifically Craig has made significant progress in improving his PBs.

Photo courtesy of Cranston Imagery of Craig receiving the Gary Inness Memorial Shield from Mrs Gloriana Innes.
 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Lawn Bowls Coaching and Training

Disability Sport Fife (DSF) in partnership with Beveridge Park Bowling Club will once again be offering bowls training and coaching sessions for outdoor bowlers with a physical, sensory or learning disability during the 2014 season.

Sessions are available to bowlers who already play lawn bowls and compete in DSF indoor or outdoor competitions. Sessions will help prepare Fife bowlers for national and inter area competitions and the Fife Championships scheduled for the Beveridge Park on Friday June 27th.

Beveridge Park Club members will be in attendance to support and coach participating bowlers.

Details are as follows:

From 8th May until 26th June inclusive

Thursday 14.00 - 16.00 hrs.

Price per session £2.50

All DSF members interested in participating should register their

interest in the first instance with Norma Buchanan,Administrator,

Disability Sport Fife,MichaelWoods Centre, Viewfield,

Glenrothes, Fife KY6 2RD (Tel 03451 555555 plus Ext 444989 or Email norma.buchanan@fife.gov.uk).

Norma is the link between DSFmembers and the Beveridge Park Bowling Club. Confirmation that a place has been allocated will be sent to each bowler. Poor attendance has been an issue in previous years hopefully not this year?

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Nomination Time from Fife Swimmer

In 2012 Craig was the only Disability Sport Fife member to be selected for Team GB for the Paralympic Games, continuing a tradition of Fife representation in all GB Paralympic teams dating back to 1984. The young Dalgety Bay swimmer has raised the bar in S14 swimming in Scotland since he first burst on to scene as a pupil at Inverkeithing HS and initially as a member of Carnegie SC.

Craig has taken his excellent form of 2013 through to 2014 and turned in a number of top class performances. At the Scottish Nationals, Commonwealth Games Trials in Glasgow, Craig competed in two events and won gold medals in S14 50m and 200m freestyle. The latter was a PB, Scottish record of 02.03.05 and a nomination time for the 2014 Para-sport swimming in Glasgow 2014. Craig will learn later in the season if he has been selected for Glasgow 2014.

At the 2014 British Para International Swim Meet, also in Glasgow, Craig once again competed in two events. In 100m Back Craig recorded a PB of 01.05.11, just missing out on the European Championship qualifying time by fourteen one hundredths of a second. 

In 200m Free Craig recorded 02.03.74, won a silver medal but just missed out on an IPC European Championships qualifying time by one second.

Craig continues to excel in the S14 class north and south of the Border. Craig swims with the Edinburgh University performance squad where he is coached by Chris Jones.

> For more information on Craig Rodgie please view our Athletes Profile Section

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife’s First Para-sport Selections for Glasgow 2014

Two Disability Sport Fife members have been selected for Para-sport bowls for Glasgow 2014. It will be the first occasion that Scotland’s Para-Sport Lawn Bowlers compete in the Games since 2002 in Manchester, where Team Scotland won the triples gold medal. Leading the Para-sport squad once again and hoping to repeat the Manchester performance will be Bob Dick from Cupar.

The B6/B7/B8 Triples team of Billy Allan (Cowdenbeath) , Michael Simpson (Auchtermuchty) and Kevin Wallace (Central) have already tasted success on the greens at the Kelvingrove Lawn Bowls Centre, where they won the 2013 Eight Nations Commonwealth Invitational Championships. Kevin and Michael also experienced international success at the last (IBD) World Championships in 2011 where Kevin won Gold in the Singles and a Bronze in the Pairs with Michael.

B2/B3 Mixed Pair Robert Conway and Irene Edgar from the West of Scotland  were also successful at the Eight Nations, defeating  England in the Bronze medal match. 

They too have great international pedigree, with Robert winning Gold at the 2013 International Blind Bowls Association World Championships and together they won Bronze in the Pairs event. Robert and Irene, who have a visual impairment, will be supported by two Directors Ron McArthur and David Thomas.

South Africa, the reigning World Champions, and Australia World Champions the occasion before on home soil are expected to be the main opposition for Team Scotland but the Scots will view every opponent as posing a threat. Complacency will be avoided at all cost. Preparations have been meticulous and a recent camp in Portugal determined final selections. Billy and Michael are Fife’s first Commonwealth Games representatives since full medal Para-sports events were introduced to the Games. 

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife Teenager Prepares for Europeans

Lucy Walkup from Glenrothes and Auchmuty HS has been selected for the GB Deaf Team for the 11th European Swimming Championships in Saransk, Russia in June 2014.   Lucy is a member of the Scottish Youth Development Squad and her 2013 competition year came to an end at the Scottish National Short Course Age Group Championships in December where she set three new age group world records in the S15 classification for 50m, 100m and 200m breaststroke, improving on her 100m world record set in November.

Lucy is a member of Carnegie Swimming Club where she is coached by John Szaranek. Following on from from significant performance progress last year, Lucy has maintained momentum into 2014 with some very special performances at the Scottish Swimming Short Course Nationals in Glasgow.  Lucy swam 100 Fly in 1:13.26 and 100 Breast in 1:19.75 for a personal best time and a split of 36.55 for a Scottish Deaf Record. Lucy continued with a 50 Free time of 29.70, 200 Breast 2:53.57 and 50 Breast in 36.76. Lucy’s 50 Fly time of 31.73 was another personal best and another Scottish Short Course Deaf Record.

Lucy was also recently involved down south at the GB Deaf Championships in Loughborough where she won two gold, one silver and three bronze medals. Lucy’s performances were 200IM 2:37.63 PB and silver medal: 100 Free 1:05.05 PB and bronze medal; 50 Breast 36.80 and gold medal; 50 Free 29.67 and bronze medal; 50 Fly 32.30 and bronze medal; 100 Breast 1:20.69 and gold medal. Lucy was delighted to win the Breaststroke Open Trophy for the 6th consecutive year.

 Lucy is a very committed member of Disability Sport Fife who consistently turns out quality performances on the big occasions. Lucy has certainly been “Miss Consistency” over the past couple of seasons, following on from her first at appearance for Team GB at the Deaflympics in Bulgaria. The European Championships will be another major test for the young Fife swimmer but if focus and commitment determine winners then Lucy will be in line for another series of personal best performances.

During her short career as a high performance international swimmer Lucy is indebted to Bankhead Robes for financial support with her significant competition expenses. Lucy was recently voted Kirkcaldy and Central Fife Disabled Athlete of the Year for the second year in succession.

Photo: Lucy Receiving award from sponsors PLM Optometrists – courtesy Cranston Imagery

> For more information on Lucy Walkup please view our Athletes Profile Section

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Scottish Senior Swimming Championships

2014 marks the 43rd anniversary of the Scottish Disability Sport (SDS) Championships for sensory and physically impaired swimmers - Saturday 26th April. Back in 1970 the first Championships were held at the Fife Sports Institute in Glenrothes and included swimmers with a physical, sensory or learning disability. As the disability swimming programme in Scotland developed the Championships were split into two days of Senior Championships and two days of Junior Championships. Thanks to continued support from Falkirk Council, the Junior and Senior Championships for sensory and physically impaired swimmers are held annually at the Grangemouth Sports Complex with significant support and interest from Council staff.

Most of Scotland’s leading sensory and physically impaired swimmers are signed up to compete in this year’s Championships. Scotland’s leading deaf swimmers Jack McComish, Danielle Joyce and Lucy Walkup (Fife) performed magnificently at the Deaflympics in Bulgaria last year. Fresh from the GB Deaf Championships in Loughborough and the Scottish Nationals in Glasgow they are preparing for the 11th European Deaf Championships in Russia in June of this year. All three swimmers will enjoy the challenge of taking on the country’s leading physically and visually impaired swimmers at Grangemouth.

Visually impaired Paralympian James Clegg set the standard with an excellent bronze medal at the Paralympic Games in 2012 in 100m butterfly and he similarly will relish the challenge of taking on the leading deaf and physically impaired swimmers in the open classes at the Scottish Championships. Stefan Hoggan (Fife) and Robert Dalgleish will be flying the flag for Scotland’s physically impaired swimmers and they also will rise to the challenge as always. Scotland has a long tradition of producing outstanding high performance swimmers and in 2014 there are outstanding young swimmers challenging for places in Team Scotland for Glasgow 2014 and subsequent Paralympic Games and Deaflympics.

SDS in partnership with Scottish Swimming continues to produce education and training options across the country. Pool Workshops and Inclusive Coaching Workshops have been delivered across Scotland and also at the Scottish Swimming National Conference. Both Associations believe that by creating more qualified coaches and teachers the movement will attract new learners who will eventually become new competitors challenging for places on the performance pathway. SDS also acknowledges the great work that has been promoted in Local Authorities across the country to promote inclusive learn to swim opportunities. SDS and Scottish Swimming are totally committed to increasing the range of inclusive teaching and coaching opportunities available to learners and swimmers with a disability across Scotland.

Every swimmer competing at the Championships of 2014 will as always be competing for points towards their total in the Inter Area team competition for the Sportsman’s Endeavour Trophy. Scotland’s leading junior swimmers have been invited to participate in the Championships to offer an opportunity to compete against their senior colleagues and the chance of recording personal best performances. The Inter Area team trophy will be keenly contested and hopefully the final two relays of the 2014 Championships will end in finger tip touches between the anchor leg swimmers.

SDS is as always indebted to all Scottish Swimming officials plus the many volunteers who turn out year after year in support of the Scottish swimming programme. Undoubtedly as always every swimmer will be well supported by spectators and fellow swimmers. Regardless of individual targets SDS wishes every swimmer success.

Photo: Some of the Fife swimmers who will compete at Grangemouth – Lucy Walkup, Craig Smith, Craig Rodgie (not competing), John Hick and Stefan Hoggan

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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2014 National Cross Country Championships

Athletes from Bell Baxter HS, Glenrothes HS, Madras College, Lochgelly HS, Woodmill HS, Balwearie HS and Fife College Cupar Campus represented Disability Sport Fife at the 2014 Scottish Cross Country Championships organised by Scottish Athletics and Scottish Disability Sport at Bellahouston in Glasgow. Fife athletes recorded many fine performances at the East Series events held at Peffermill, Edinburgh, and hopes were high of medals as the young athletes headed to the West for the 2014 “nationals”.

Among the leading performances by Fife girls was the run by Chelsea Logie from Glenrothes HS who was third in the S2 1K event in a time of 6:22. Other quality performances by Fife girls were recorded by Joyce Law from Madras College in St Andrews who won the S4 1K in 5:35, 20 seconds ahead of her Fife team-mate Marie Wilson from Lochgelly HS. In the boys S1 1K event Robert Sellstrom from Balwearie HS finished third in a time of 4:54. A similar position was registered by Brandon Easson from Balwearie HS in the S3 1K in a time of 4:47.

As the distance increased to 2K it was Casey Donaldson (S1) from Woodmill HS who registered the first win for Fife in a time of 11:35. This was followed by Robbie Simpson from Glenrothes HS who registered another Fife first place in the 2K event for visually impaired athletes. Ryan Dunwoodie from Balwearie HS rounded off a fine afternoon for the Fife boys with a win over 2K in the S4/S5/S6 event for athletes with a learning disability in a time of 8:20.

By far and away the leading Fife performance of the day was by Sam Fernando from Bell Baxter HS who recorded the fastest S3 time over 3K of 12:38. Only two athletes recorded faster times than the young Bell Baxter HS pupil and they were S6 and S5 pupils Finlay MacLennan and Stuart Leghorn from Highland and North Lanarkshire respectively. Sam trains with Fife AC and has already been identified by Disability Sport Fife as one of the most promising young middle distance athletes in the Fife programme.

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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2014 Fife Open at Elmwood Golf Club

The 10th anniversary of the Fife Open Golf Tournament for players with a disability will be held over Elmwood Golf Course on Friday 25 April. Over 45 players have entered to date for the annual event that is a collaboration between Fife College, Cupar Campus, and Disability Sport Fife.  Players with a physical, sensory or learning disability of all levels of ability have the opportunity to enter. 

A new Claret Jug has been purchased for the 10th Anniversary Open and the proud recipient will be the leading golfer at the 10th Anniversary Fife Open. In subsequent years the trophy will be the prize target for all the leading players entered.

The Fife Open has three sections. There will be an 18 hole competition, 9 hole competition and skills tests for novice players.  The majority of players are entered for the 18 hole and 9 hole competitions.  Undergraduate students of the College play a pivotal role on the day by providing operational and administrative support across the three sections.

The Fife Open convenor is as always College Lecturer Craig Martin with event administrative support provided by Disability Sport Fife Administrator Norma Buchanan. As well as the planning and delivery of the event the students provide vital support on course to the players in each of the three sections of the tournament.



Photo: some of the players at previous Fife Open

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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8 Minute PB for Fife Marathon Man

Derek Rae from Kirkcaldy improved on his personal best time by over 8 minutes when he completed the 2014 London Marathon in 2:44.43. For the past 14 weeks the Anster Haddie has been receiving coaching support from Ron Morrison, aided by Don Macgregor (7th in the 1972 Olympic marathon in Munich) in their Fife AC and St Andrews University group. Derek hopes one day to represent Great Britain as a Para – sport athlete and his run in London was yet another step towards achieving that goal.

Derek’s build up for his first ever London Marathon was well planned and carefully orchestrated by Derek’s support team which also includes fellow athletes, friends for many years,  from the Anster Haddies. Excellent runs in the 12K Scottish Cross Country Championships in Falkirk, Cupar 5 miles and the Alloa Half Marathon confirmed he was in form and ready for his most significant challenge of the 2014 season. A final 3 hour run and an appropriate period of tapering ensured he was ready for the big occasion. Everything went according to plan and the result was a significant personal best time for the very talented and determined distance athlete.

Following a serious motor cycle accident and sustaining a brachial plexus injury, requiring him to run with his arm in a sling, Derek has improved as Britain’s leading physically disabled T46 marathon runner.  Derek travels to St Andrews for training once a week with Ron and then follows his training programme in venues throughout Fife including the track at the new Sports and Leisure Centre in Glenrothes. 

Derek is a member of Disability Sport Fife and a Scottish Disability Sport Academy athlete. During his short career in Para-sport athletics he has been supported by Scottish Athletics, the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust and the Reelers Ball Committee in East Fife. 

Derek Rae

Coach and athlete will be the first to admit that this is only one stage in a journey that may one day lead to international selection. It is undoubtedly major progress and well done Derek.

> For more information on Derek Rae please view our Athletes Profile Section

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Disability Sport Fife Awards 2014 
 

Nominations are invited from Member Organisations or individuals associated with Disability Sport Fife for the DSF Awards that will be presented at the Awards evening to be held at the Michael Woods Centre in Glenrothes on Monday 12th May at 19 00 following  the 2014 DSF Annual General Meeting. All members and friends of DSF are welcome. Apart from the AGM and Awards Presentations there will be a review of the year past and a short presentation by 2012 Paralympic rowing gold medalist David Smith, originally from Dunfermline and now living in Aviemore.

1/2       ACCESS AWARDS (2)

Awarded to any sports person(s) with a disability who has demonstrated exceptional qualities of sportsmanship, determination, commitment, leadership, achievement that single him/her out from others during the year past.  The Access Awards are presented to athletes and players of any level of ability.

3          SWIMMER OF THE YEAR –The Leslie Inglis Trophy

To be presented to the swimmer who has been particularly successful during the past year.  The individual to be recognised will have achieved excellence in swimming at the highest level.

4          ATHLETE OF THE YEAR – Colin Keay Award

To be presented to the athlete who has achieved exceptional levels of success during the past year.  The athlete to be recognised will have achieved at the highest levels of disability sport.

5          BOWLER OF THE YEAR – McLean Award

To be presented to the outstanding Fife bowler of the past year.  Any bowler nominated will have achieved a high level of performance in indoor, outdoor, carpet or ten pin bowling in the past year.

6          MOST IMPROVED SWIMMER OF THE YEAR – Paul Noble Award

To be presented to the swimmer who has made the most significant improvement in the past year at any level in competitive swimming.

7          FOOTBALLER OF THE YEAR – Penman Family Award

To be presented to the outstanding junior or senior footballer of the year past.

8          WHEELCHAIR ATHLETE OF THE YEAR – The Ian McNab Memorial Trophy

To be presented to a wheelchair athlete who in the year past has achieved a high level of performance in any sport.  The trophy was donated by the McNab family in memory of Ian who was a most influential and respected member of Disability Sport Fife during the early years.  Ian was an exceptional all round athlete who was ahead of his time in disability sport.

9          LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD – Gary Innes Award

To be presented to an individual who has been involved in international sport for a significant period of time.

10        JUNIOR SPORTS PERSON OF THE YEAR – Aileen Harper Award

This award recognises the leading young sports person under 18 who has excelled in any sport during the year past.

11        JUNIOR ENDEAVOUR AWARD – Caroline Baird Award

To be presented to a junior athlete who has demonstrated a particularly high level of commitment in any sport at any level.

12        SENIOR ENDEAVOUR AWARD – Tom Donaldson Award

To be presented to a severely disabled sports person who has achieved a high level of success at their own particular level of ability.

13        SPECIAL ACHIEVEMENTS AWARD – in memory of the late Ian Cowper

These awards recognise athletes and players with additional support needs who have produced exceptional performances during the year past.  At any AGM up to three Fife athletes/players will be recognised.

14        COACH OF THE YEAR – Campbell Award

This award recognises a coach who has supported any DSF athlete or team to achieve success in performance sport.

15        EMERGING COACH OF THE YEAR – Ann Swann Award

To be presented to a coach who is new to disability sport in Fife.

16        SERVICE TO SPORT – Thomson Award

To be presented to an individual who has contributed as a coach, volunteer or administrator to disability sport in Fife.  Disability Sport Fife is strong because of its team of volunteers.  The service to sport award recognises the importance of volunteers to the Fife programme.

17        VOLUNTEER SPECIAL RECOGNITION – Anne Hay Award

To be presented to an individual who has demonstrated exceptional commitment to DSF as a volunteer.

18        SPECIAL RECOGNITION AWARDS – Adam Morley Awards

To be presented to representatives from partner or member organisations who have made a significant contribution to DSF over the years.

19        AMBASSADOR OF THE YEAR – Alec Thorburn Award

This award is presented in memory of one of DSF’s most committed volunteers.  The award recognises an individual from any organisation who has supported and promoted DSF across a range of platforms.

Please note that only certain awards are for ‘performance sports people’ who have achieved success at national or international events.  There are other awards for members who have demonstrated exceptional qualities at area or club level.

All member organisations and individuals connected with Disability Sport Fife may nominate, in writing or by email direct to Norma Buchanan, Disability Sport Fife Administrator, Michael Woods Sports Centre, Viewfield, Glenrothes KY6 2RD or email (norma.buchanan@fife.gov.uk) including the following information:

a)         Name, address and telephone number of individual being nominated plus the same for the individual submitting the nomination.

b)         A short statement on why this person should be considered for any of the awards.

Only nominations submitted before Friday 2 May 2014 will be considered.  The presentations will be made at the A.G.M. of Disability Sport Fife on Monday 12 May 2014 at 19.00 hrs.

DSF AGM
Photo: Guest Speaker and Presenter of 2013 Awards - Provost of Fife - Councillor Jim Leishman MBE with the Award Winners.

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First Para - sport rower from Fife

Graham McIntyre from Leven is the first Disability Sport Fife member to pursue a sporting pathway in Para-rowing.  As well as being involved in a strenuous static rowing programme at the Michael Woods Centre in Glenrothes, Graham has been travelling to Strathclyde Park for coaching and advice from Scottish Rowing’s John Blair, who coaches Scotland’s leading Para-rowers. 

Graham had a road traffic accident in 1998 and the outcome was a spinal paralysis T12/L1.  Graham spent a year in hospital at the Southern General in Glasgow where he was introduced to the “Options” programme designed to encourage recent spinal injured men and women to look at physical activity as a leisure pursuit.  By 2001 Graham had sampled a range of outdoor activities including water skiing, scuba diving and skiing through the “Backup programme”.  Before his accident Graham had always been physically active and he became quite frustrated with the lack of quality team options available. Being a football fanatic, ardent football fan and past player he continued to keep himself fit and work away on his own in appropriate settings.

Greham MacIntyre

For almost 10 years Graham maintained his fitness in a number of different gyms in Central Fife and at the same time turned his attention to building his new family life.  The opening of the new Michael Woods Centre in Glenrothes inspired him to visit the centre where he had a chance meeting with Richard Brickley, President of Disability Sport Fife. This prompted a longer lifestyle meeting and a discussion about the range of options that might be available in sport in Fife.  This included the development of his gym programme but at the same time developing his interest in static rowing at home and in the gym into Para-rowing.  Contact was made with John Blair of Scottish Rowing and without any delay Graham was travelling through to Strathclyde Park.  

Back in Glenrothes, Fife Sports and Leisure staff member Stuart Bizzarri and the gym team were offering every encouragement to Graham to further develop his upper body strength. 

Graham is working on a programme prepared by Scottish Rowing and supported by the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust staff team.  His aim is to be out on the water in April on an adapted boat suitable for Para-sport rowers.  Para-sport rower David Smith, originally from Dunfermline and now living in Aviemore, was one of three Scots who won gold medals at the Paralympic Games in London. This achievement was one of the inspirational sporting moments to Graham in his quest to excel in Para-rowing. In the same way as David’s exploits inspired Graham, the success of GBs wheelchair curlers in Sochi have inspired the Leven man to try curling during the winter months. Richard is planning to fix him up with one of Scotland’s greatest ever wheelchair curlers  Michael McCreadie, Paralympic silver medallist from Turino.

Disability Sport Fife is delighted that Graham McIntyre is the first Para-rower to follow the performance pathway. With the support of Scottish Rowing and the enthusiasm of the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust gym staff, Graham is confident that he has the best support team available at this critical time in his development.

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Perfect Send Off from Rotarians

Derek Rae was awarded the Quaich from the Rotarians of St Andrews Kilrymont as their performance disabled athlete of the year. The award is presented annually by the club to the athlete nominated by Disabilty Sport Fife. The recipient attends a club meeting to receive the award and spend time over a meal with Rotarians who are always interested to learn about the athletes and their interests and achievements. The award comes with a £250 training grant which is lodged with the Fife Disabled Sports Trust and available to the athlete as and when required. The award was first presented around 10 years ago and a significant number of Fife athletes have benefitted from this example of Rotary support.

Derek received his award the night before he set off by train with his partner Susan to run in his first London marathon. Derek’s coaches are Ron Morrison and Donald MacGregor from St Andrews. Disability Sport Fife recognises the Rotary Club of St Andrews Kilrymont as one of its major partner agencies. The photo includes the presentation party on the night with Derek.

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Record Entry Record Results

55 athletes from schools and colleges representing Disability Sport Fife competed in the third Series of the East Cross Country Championships held at Peffermill Playing Fields in Edinburgh. This was the largest representation of Fife athletes in any Series event in the last five years and there were many excellent performances. The Series is organised by Scottish Athletics and Scottish Disability Sport.

The outstanding performance in the 1Km race was by Marie Wilson from Lochgelly HS who recorded the fastest S4 time of 5:44. Three athletes picked up third places and they were Leah Fleming (S2 - Lochgelly HS), Kirsty Fraser (S4 - Balwearie HS) and Stacey Hynd (S3 - Lochgelly HS).

In the equivalent 1Km race for boys, Fife had fourth first places in the year group events. Reece Dickson (S2 - Balwearie HS) finished in 4:28, Irvin Wilson (S3 - Balwearie HS) completed the course in 4:13, David Duncan (S4 - Glenrothes HS) recorded a time of 5:08 and Alex Fisher (S5 - Balwearie HS) was the fastest boy over the distance in a time of 3:37. Daryl Mulligan (S6 - Lochgelly HS) and Dean Bruce (S2 - Bell Baxter HS) finished their year group races in second place and third place finishes were recorded by Stuart Taylor (S2 - Balwearie HS), Fraser Wilson (S3 - Lochgelly HS) and Brandon Eason (S3 - Balwearie HS).

The performances recorded by the Fife athletes over 2Km were also impressive. Year group wins were recorded by Casey Donaldson (S1 - Woodmill HS) in a time of 10:25, Callum Donaldson (S3 - Woodmill HS) in 11:52, Robbie Simpson (S4 - Glenrothes HS) in 9:14, Ryan Dunwoodie (S5 - Balwearie HS) in 8:15 and Ryan Spearman (Fife College) in 9:56. Apart from the individual race winners for there was a second place finish for Lee Inglis (Fife College) in the colleges race and two third place finishes for Cameron McKendrick Fife College and Adam Fox (S5 - Woodmill HS).

Once again the outstanding overall performance of the day was by Sam Fernando of Bell Baxter HS who was the highest placed athlete over 3Km and also the leading S3 athlete in a finishing time of 11:58. John Sapsed (Woodmill HS) won the S5 and Andrew Williams (Woodmill HS) the S6 race in times of 12:10 and 12:37 respectively. Finlay Skeet of Fife College was the first student home in 12:55. Over 3Km Liam McIntyre (S6 - Woodmill HS) picked up a second place finish and John Roy of Fife College had a similar performance in the colleges race. Carter Taylor (S6 - Woodmill HS) completed a wonderful day’s running for the Fife athletes with a third place finish in his year group.

An outstanding entry, many outstanding performances and the Fife athletes now look forward to the Scottish Cross Country Championships to be held at Bellahouston Park on 18 March.

Photo: Ryan Dunwoodie - Balwearie HS

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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DSF Archery Championships

Cluny Clays was once again the venue for the 2014 Disability Sport Fife (DSF) Archery Championships as part of the annual DSF Festival of Sport. The Festival is supported by the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust and Celebrating Fife and participants at the 2014 event are all members of archery promoted by East Fife Community Support Services and West Fife Community Support Services.

The winner of the mens Division 3 title was Craig Hunter from East Fife with a total of 82 pts. Steven Penman from West Fife finished runner-up and Tristan Rankin from West Fife finished in third place.

The clear winner in the mens Division 2 section was Craig Houston from East Fife with a total of 55 pts. Aaron Kean from West Fife and Rickie Ballingall from East Fife finished second and third respectively.

The mens Division 2 event was a closely run competition between Martin Doran and Michael Wilkie both from East Fife. Martin ended the winner with 91 pts, 6 ahead of Michael as runner-up. Paul Arthur from West Fife finished in third place.

The womens senior open similarly was a closely contested affair and only 7 pts separated the winner Tanis Murphy and Andrea Spry at the end of the shoot. Jemma Hancock finished in third place. All three archers are members of East Fife Community Support Services.

DSF is indebted to Cluny Clays for support of the Championships once again and for Gordon Easton and David Cowieson who managed the competition on behalf of DSF.

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Young Fife Swimmers in Top Form

The 2014 British Junior Championships for swimmers with a disability were held at Ponds Forge in Sheffield. Scottish Swimming supported a strong team of representative young Scots with a physical, sensory or learning disability and hopes were high for a top three finish in the team competition. After a full weekend of quality swimming the young Scots finished third in the team event and returned north with many personal best performances, a significant number of titles and medals plus of course many happy memories of times spent with similarly minded performance swimmers and coaches.

Disability Sport Fife was represented by three of the country’s leading young swimmers from swimming clubs in East, West and Central Fife. By far the most experienced and most successful over the weekend was young Lucy Walkup from Glenrothes and Carnegie Swimming Club. Lucy produced some excellent times, set two personal best performances and in her favoured 100m breaststroke won the British title in 1:16.75. Lucy’s other outstanding swims were 1:02.23 in finishing third in 100m freestyle and 1:10.78 in finishing third in 100 IM. These swims were personal bests by 1.4 and 1.0 seconds respectively. Lucy completed her outstanding weekend with a silver medal in 100m butterfly in 1:12.11 and a bronze medal in the 50m freestyle in 28.95. The Auchmuty HS pupil is one of the country’s leading deaf swimmers and she rounded off her weekend with a 4x100m medley relay gold medal where she swam butterfly and a 4x100m freestyle silver medal.

Craig Smith from Glenrothes and FINS had his most successful weekend at a British Championship event to date. Craig’s outstanding performance was in the 400m freestyle which he won in 5:27.41 and won his first ever British title. Craig’s time was a very significant personal best and he followed this up with a bronze medal in 100m freestyle in 1:15.40 to record a 1.0 second personal best time. Craig’s 50m freestyle time was 33.88 in finishing fourth in the S8 class but this also was a personal best by 0.2 seconds. The Glenrothes HS teenager completed his weekend by leading off the Scottish 4x100m freestyle relay which won silver in 1:13.64, a personal best for the Scots by 1.8 seconds.

The youngest member of the Scottish team from Fife was Oliver Carter from Cupar and District Swimming Club who continues to improve with every swim. Oliver was ill for a significant part of the weekend but managed to produce some excellent swims. Apart from swimming butterfly in the Scottish 4x100m medley relay team silver medal swim, Oliver won two bronze medals for 200m IM in 2:55.78 and 100m breaststroke in 1:39.76 respectively. The young Cupar swimmer completed his weekend with a fourth place 100m freestyle swim in the S10 class in 1:08.42.

A significant contribution to an overall fine Scottish team performance by the Fife swimmers.

Photo: Lucy Walkup

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Badminton on the UP in Fife 

The late Russell Hogg had a major influence on the decision taken by Disability Sport Fife five years ago to identify badminton as a priority development sport. While in post as on officer of Scottish Disability Sport, the prolific Scottish international player from Dunfermline, encouraged DSF President Richard Brickley to consider badminton as a sport for players of all levels of ability with a disability and introduce projects and programmes that would increase participation and improve performance. Russell would have been delighted with the significant progress made by DSF in 2014 and in particular a new coaches workshop held at Glenrothes HS.

40 players competed in the 2014 Fife badminton championships at Kirkcaldy Leisure Centre, a 50% increase in three years. For the first time a badminton Festival involving over 30 pupils with additional support needs was held at the University of St Andrews with support from the University badminton club. DSF coach Alex Bird is delivering weekly coaching sessions in Glenrothes to young players with a disability and enjoying weekly attendances of over 25 and rising. For the first time this year, DSF was represented at the Four Nations Championships by physically disabled player John Hick. With participation and competition in a good place DSF turned attention to coach education.

DSF invited Jane Russell of Badminton Scotland to deliver a two hour workshop to teachers, learning support assistants, sports leaders and Social Work Services staff at Glenrothes HS. Jane prepared a programme that would help staff and volunteers to introduce badminton to learners of all levels of ability with a physical, sensory or learning disability. The workshop was mainly practical and attended by 14 staff from Fife High Schools, Social Work Services and the voluntary sector. Such was the success that it is hoped the workshop will be replicated in other areas of Fife and perhaps beyond. The interest in badminton among DSF members and partners is considerable and DSF is committed to sustaining the interest and introducing other projects that improve performance, increase participation and contribute to coach education.

Photo: Jane Russell of Badminton Scotland

Richard Brickley MBE
President Disability Sport Fife

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Festival off to a Flying Start 

The annual Fife Swimming Championships organised by Disability Sport Fife (DSF) were held in the Michael Woods Sports and Leisure Centre in Glenrothes for the first time.  The Championships traditionally launch the annual Sports Festival which once again is supported by the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust and Celebrating Fife.  The guest of honour at the Championships was the Provost of Fife, Jim Leishman MBE.  In his usual enthusiastic and supportive manner the Provost welcomed swimmers and support staff and presented medals during the event. 

The 2014 Championships had over 150 individual entries.  Swimmers were challenging for Fife titles and the opportunity to represent Fife at the forthcoming Scottish Championships to be held at Grangemouth and Glasgow.  As always DSF was able to call upon a very dedicated team of officials and volunteers from across Fife and for the first time Sports Leaders from Kirkcaldy High School played a lead role as officials supported by Scottish Swimming senior officials.  Competitors came from Social Work Community Support Services in East, West and Central Fife, Glenrothes HS, Woodmill HS, Lochgelly HS, Balwearie HS, Kilmaron School, Fife College SRUC Elmwood Campus, Scottish Autism, Carnegie Swimming Club, Glenrothes Swimming Club, FINS, Cupar and District Swimming Club plus other organisations in membership of DSF.

Making her first appearance in her first championships since 2003 was Paralympian Lara Ferguson who enjoyed some head to head swims against her Carnegie Club team-mate Stefan Hoggan.  Both swimmers will be challenging for a place in Team Scotland for the Para-sport swimming at Glasgow 2014.  Craig Rodgie had to withdraw on the day of the gala through illness and Deaflympics participant Lucy Walkup was on duty at the National Schools Championships in the West of Scotland.  Both are regulars at the Championships.  This opened up an opportunity for young Oliver Carter (Cupar and District Swimming Club) and Craig Smith (FINS) to step up to the plate and that is exactly what they did. 

The appeal of the Fife Championships is that they are time banded and swimmers compete against opponents of similar ability across distances and disciplines.  The Trophy Race is open to the leading swimmers in the Social Work Community Support Services and Tanis Murphy from East Fife won the womens race and Craig Donaldson from Central Fife the mens equivalent.  West Fife dominated the inter Community Support Services relay and retained the Sonia Kane memorial trophy.  West Fife swimmers also won the team competition and retained the A H Brodie trophy in convincing style.  Woodmill HS pupils won the boys and girls relay and DSF VORTEX 1 and 2 were convincing winners in the club relays.

Among the other swimmers who caught the eye were Briony Clark from Glenrothes Swimming Club and Mary Wilson from Kirkcaldy who was appearing in her first Fife Championships.  Steven McCormick from FINS is one to watch for in the future.  Finlay Skeet from Fife College SRUC Elmwood Campus and Paul Coulthard from Kelty recorded quality swims in the open section for male swimmers with a learning disability.  Nikki Baxter from West Fife Community Support Services was once again in fine form in the senior events for swimmers with a learning disability.  Carter Taylor, Andrew Williams, Liam McIntyre, Ross Bowman, Calum Donaldson, Samantha Benton, Aimee Gibson and Emma Bell (Woodmill HS), Marie Wilson (Lochgelly HS), Gemma Sutherland (Glenrothes HS), Alex Fisher, Jennifer Paton and Ryan Dick (Balwearie HS) were among the young schools representative to catch the eye.

After one year’s absence the Swimming Championships returned to Glenrothes and the event was judged an outstanding success in the magnificent new surroundings.  DSF is confident about selecting a strong team for the 2014 “Nationals”.

Photo: Glenrothes HS pupils

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife Player Competes at Nationals 

Disability Sport Fife member John Hick from Glenrothes has made his debut at the 4 Nations Parabadminton competition in Glasgow.  John has been attending the badminton session at the Michael Woods Centre, Glenrothes led by Disability Sport Fife coach Alex Bird.  Since taking up the sport he has progressed well and earned the accolade of the first Disability Sport Fife ambulant physically disabled athlete to take part in the championships.

John’s first championships could not have been tougher.  In his initial two matches he came up against Scottish international players Alan Oliver and Neil Jarvie but he has been hugely positive about his performances.  It was very much a learning experience and together with coach Alex a new programme has been established for the next 12 months. This programme also involves strength and conditioning training with support from the gym staff at the Michael Woods Centre. 

John’s impairment affects an arm and leg on the same side of his body which restricts his movement around the court but he is hugely determined to improve his game and court mobility in every way possible.  To date John has enjoyed a very successful career as a swimmer representing Fife and Scotland in major championships.

Photo: John is in the centre with his fellow badminton players. Coach Alex is front left and coach Ewan front right.

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Boccia in Fife Making Steady Progress 

The impact of Kieran Steer’s success in boccia is starting to pay dividends. Kieran from Crossgates is the perfect success story. Kieran was introduced to Disability Sport Fife following his attendance at a DSF Junior Sports Festival. He then joined the Monday multi sports session at the Fife Sports Institute and tried every sport possible until boccia was suggested and he took to it like a fish to water. A local classification followed and the rest is history. Kieran inspires everybody with whom he comes in contact and Fife could not ask for a better role model.

Catherine Carruthers has joined the DSF coaching workforce and she now leads a boccia session on Monday evenings at the brand new Sports and Leisure Centre in Glenrothes, the replacement for the Fife Sports Institute. Numbers remain small but those who attend are inspired by Kieran and may one day start to compete as competently as he did in his early years. The search is on to find others to join the session and everybody connected with the Association is on the lookout. The media campaign has been robust and DSF has used its access to every school in Fife through the PEPAS initiative.

As part of the development and with support from SDS, DSF ran a very successful Boccia Leaders Award mid February at the Michael Woods Centre. Andrinne Craig was the tutor and what a brilliant job she did. The 10 candidates who attended were hugely complimentary about the quality of the session. Well done Andrinne and thank you for your time and expertise.

Boccia is on the move in Fife. Watch this space.

Richard Brickley MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Fife Football and Unihoc Championships 

22 teams comprising of 160 players with a learning disability competed in the 2014 Disability Sport Fife (DSF) football 5s and unihoc championships at the Michael Woods Centre in Glenrothes.  The Championships are one of the longest running in the calendar of events organised by DSF and this year they were supported by the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust and Celebrating Fife.  Five football divisions and three unihoc divisions for seniors and juniors, men and women were contested in an action packed day filled with lots of skill and plenty of enthusiasm and fair play.  Divisions are determined by player ability, age, gender and the DSF principles of sport for all.

Division 3 of the unihoc competition was contested by players from Fife College Elmwood Campus and after a closely contested round robin tournament the “Stones” amassed 5 points to a single point by the “Sticks”.  Unihoc teams from Fife College Elmwood Campus and Scottish Autism playing under the titles of “Spartak” and “Red Star” contested the Division 2 final with the “Spartak” team winning by 1 goal to nil.  East Fife Community Support Services ran out worthy winners of Division 1 with the students from Fife College Elmwood Campus collecting the runners-up medals.  The East Fife ladies have an outstanding track record in this competition but they had to demonstrate their best unihoc skills ever to snatch the title from the younger student team.

The Division 5 final of the indoor 5s football championships was contested by teams representing Scottish Autism and Kilmaron School and playing under the banner of “City” and “United”.  It was the “City” team who collected the gold medals following an undefeated run in the qualifying games.  Balwearie High School Department for Pupils with Additional Support Needs entered teams for the Division 4 junior competition.  The Division went to play off matches where Balwearie “Inter” defeated Balwearie “Real” by 4 points to 2.  East Fife Community Support Services contested the Division 3 final where the “A” team defeated the “B” team by a significant margin in a one sided final.  En route to that final each of the teams defeated the Fife College Elmwood Campus second team.

Student teams lifted the two major trophies in the 2014 indoor 5s football championships.  In the Division 2 competition it was the students of Fife College Elmwood Campus who defeated Lochgelly High School Sports Club second team by 8 goals to 7 in the outstanding final of the day.  The reward for the students was winning the Rosyth Dockyard trophy, the largest trophy contested each year in the DSF competition programme.  The Division 1 title in the mens indoor 5s was also determined by 1 goal.  Fife College Glenrothes Campus students defeated West Fife Community Support Services by 1 goal to nil to lift the gold medals and the Fife Council Cup.

Throughout the tournament the standard of play was high and played in the spirit of fair play and sportsmanship.  The referee for all the football matches was Neil Martin of the Scottish FA and all of the unihoc games umpired by Helima Mutch, John Johnstone and Aileen Penny.  The second major event of the 2014 annual Sports Festival organised by DSF was judged an outstanding success and enthusiastically supported by a very vociferous body of spectators. 

Photo: Fife College Elwood Campus participating students.

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife 

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Disability Sport Fife Badminton Festival 

Disability Sport Fife (DSF) enjoys a very special relationship with the students of the University of St Andrews.  The Saints have over the years financially supported individuals and teams of DSF members in their quest for excellence in disability sport.  Individual DSF members have been supported by University Sports Clubs to engage in international sport or purchase specialist equipment.

Over the years DSF has built up a relationship with the University Badminton Club and this month a Festival was held at the University Sports Centre for players with additional support needs.  32 young players from Balwearie High School, Lochgelly High School, Glenrothes High School and Madras College travelled to St Andrews for a session on badminton skills, drills and fun activities.  Jane Russell from Badminton Scotland and Alex Bird from Active Schools led the session with support from University Badminton Club players and schools support staff. 

Pupils were kept on the move for over two hours and were even introduced to a session on “primal moves” by one of the University’s fitness specialists.  A successful Festival and the participants were hugely enthused about the day.  The project was a collaboration between Maneesh Kuruvilla of the University Badminton Club, Richard Brickley, President, DSF with support from University President, Jeremy Hipps and University Badminton Club members.

Photo; Festival participants plus University Badminton Club members

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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2014 Fife Festival Draws to an End 

In the same way as the Fife Swimming Championships traditionally mark the start of the Annual Sports Festival organised by Disability Sport Fife (DSF), the Fife Tug of War Festival brings three weeks of events, workshops and Festivals to an exhilarating conclusion. Ten teams of athletes with additional support needs from East, West and Central Fife Community Support Services, Fife College, Scottish Autism, Balwearie HS, Kilmaron School and clubs in membership of DSF enjoyed 90 minutes of energy sapping “pulling” in one of three Divisions determined by gender and ability.

The three week Festival is supported by the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust and Celebrating Fife and the 2014 Tug of War entry was the highest to date. Up to 70 athletes were led by team leaders who ensured all participants understood the safety and technical rules of the sport. There was no shortage of enthusiasm and excitement for the duration of the event. The event was a more than fitting end to the most successful Festival to date. In 1976 the Festival was held on a single Saturday afternoon. In 2014 twelve different projects were organised by DSF over three weeks.

Division 1 winners: Lloyd Simpson, Ross Russell, Brandon Easson, Alex Fisher, Adam Wilkie, Chloe Wright.

Division 2 winners: Wayne Moreland, Craig Bernard, Billy Stewart, Glen Miller, Eric Boyle, Kyle Baxter.

Division 3 winners: Susan Barrett, Dawn Rogerson, Nicola Eccles, Kim Paddon, Kim Cummings, Melissa Stevenson, Michelle Bates, Vicky Walker

Photo: Some of the participants at the Tug of War Festival

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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Double Success for Balwearie High School 

7s football is thriving with Fife.  The 2014 Football League for pupils with additional support needs supported by the Scottish FA and Kirkcaldy High School ended with victories for Balwearie HS pupils in both the junior and senior sections.  The reward for the Balwearie HS senior players is the opportunity to represent Fife at the National Championships organised by the Scottish FA and Scottish Disability Sport at Ravenscraig. 

The S1/S2 tournament was introduced this year for the first time and was a resounding success.  Teams from Madras College/Bell Baxter HS, Buckhaven HS, Lochgelly HS and Balwearie HS competed over the three Series programme.  The result was in doubt until the final kick in the final match and only two points separated the top two teams over two days of play.  The 3 to 2 goals victory by Balwearie HS juniors over Madras College/Bell Baxter HS in Series 2 followed by a nil – nil draw involving the same teams in Series 3 meant Balwearie HS juniors won the section by the narrowest of margins.  In joint third place were the pupils from Buckhaven HS and Lochgelly HS.  With a total of 14 points, 2 ahead of Madras College/Bell Baxter HS Balwearie HS were crowned junior 7s champions.

Balwearie HS remained undefeated in the three Series in the senior competition with Lochgelly HS taking the runners-up shield.  Medals were presented on the day by Scottish FA staff member David McArdle.  Liam Downie of Balwearie HS was identified as the leading goal scorer of the three Series with 15 goals.  Adam Wishart from Lochgelly HS was voted goalkeeper of the tournament by the school teams coaches.  In recognition of their support for the 2014 junior tournament the Scottish FA presented six brand new footballs to the players from all the participating schools and a water bottle for each player.

Disability Sport Fife identifies the Fife Football League for pupils with additional support needs as one of the major sports development initiatives in disability sport in Fife of the past three years.  The Association plans to introduce junior coaching on a weekly basis for junior players - present and past pupils of participating schools in the 7s League with support from the Scottish FA.  DSF is indebted to Scottish FA referees Alistair Watt and John Cooper for their support over the three Series.  DSF also acknowledges the support of Rector Derek Allan, Principal Teacher of PE Malcolm Stewart and the pupils from Kirkcaldy HS.

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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First Scottish Title for Fife Boccia Player 

Kieran Steer from Crossgates has achieved one of his goals for 2014 by winning his first ever Scottish BC4 singles title at the Peak in Stirling. The young Disability Sport Fife boccia player had to defeat all his main Scottish and British rivals to lift his first national title and he did so by playing his best boccia in a major event in Scotland to date. The Championships are organised by Scottish Disability Sport.

Scotland’s most successful BC4 boccia player to date, Stephen McGuire, won bronze and Jamie McCowan collected the runners up medal. Kieran defeated GB International Peter McGuire by 4 shots to 1 in the semi final after successfully progressing from his qualifying pool. In the final, Jamie and Kieran levelled at 3 shots apiece before Kieran took the title by 4 to 3 following a double tie break.

Kieran’s main focus is on the Paralympic Games in Rio in 2016 and he did his chances no harm by winning the IPC World Junior BC4 title at the start of the year. Following selection for the GB Boccia squad for Rio, Kieran has set his heart on making the GB team for the World Championships in Beijing. Coach Claire Morrison from Dalgety Bay believes he has every chance of challenging for a team place and winning the Scottish Championship is a major step towards achieving another 2014 goal.

Kieran trains at Crossgates Community Centre and the Peak in Stirling. Kieran also makes full use of the gym at the Michael Woods centre in Glenrothes with support from the Fife sports and Leisure Trust. Kieran is a Scottish Disability Sport Academy athlete.

Photo: Stephen, Kieran and Jamie (L to R)

> For more information on Lieran Steer please view our Athletes Profile Section

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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First for Fife Athletes 

For almost a decade Disability Sport Fife has been trying to identify a team of young athletes with a physical, sensory or learning disability to challenge for the team title at the Sportshall Championships held annually at the Peak in Stirling.  The Championships are organised by Scottish Athletics and Scottish Disability Sport. In previous years, Fife teams have been placed as high as second but for the first time on Wednesday 5 March, the Fife team topped the table against junior teams from Highland, Lothian, Dumfries and Galloway, West of Scotland and Tayside. Well done to Shona Malcolm of Scottish Athletics who organised an action packed, exciting event.

Teams compete in a challenging of running/pushing, throwing and jumping activities and all team members score team points. Following a robust warm up, participating teams were involved throughout the morning in a series of individual athletics disciplines where the stop watch or tape measure determined athlete scores and consequently team points. In the afternoon all athletes competed in a series of running/pushing and throwing relays where the young Fife athletes did particularly well. Throughout the day the Fife youngsters were well managed by teachers Pamela Robson (Balwearie HS) and Fiona Stewart (Bell Baxter HS).

Every team comprises of five athletes with a learning disability and five athletes with a physical or sensory impairment. There was strong competition for places in the Fife team and Disability Sport Fife set a target this year of entering a full team for the first time in many years.  This was successfully achieved. Team captain Alex Fisher from Balwearie HS was thrilled with the performances of every athlete and how well they had performed against some tough opposition from all over Scotland. Most athletes attend one of the weekly Disability Sport Fife run/push, jump and throws sessions held at Pitreavie Athletics Centre Dunfermline, Michael Woods Centre Glenrothes or Madras College St Andrews. 

The full team representing Fife was:

Alex Fisher, Bernice King, Ryan Dunwoodie, Dylan Fotheringham, Stuart Taylor, Lewis Anderson and Kieran McDonnell (Balwearie HS), Sam Fernando and Dean Bruce (Bell Baxter HS), Robbie Simpson (Glenrothes HS), Callum Sloan (McLean Primary School) and Joanna Imrie (Waid Academy).

Richard Brickley, MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

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