President’s Certificate Winners 2017
The AWSA President’s Certificate for Outstanding Service is presented to individuals who have provided outstanding service to Army Winter Sports, in either one or more Disciplines – only 6 can be awarded annually. In his position as President of the AWSA Lt Gen Sir John Lorimer KCB DSO MBE presented certificates to this year’s deserving winners on 1st November 2017 at the Cavalry and Guards Club, London. Congratulations to the 2017 winners:
Capt (Retd) Michael Shreeves for support to EXs SPARTAN HIKE & SNOW LION
Cap Shreeves first took unit teams to Ex SPARTAN HIKE (SH) as a Team Captain; he would freely admit that he was not a racer himself, but was keen to introduce young officers and soldiers to race skiing and develop their skills. In 2002, following notification that the Race Office Manager (ROM) for EX SH would be retiring after the 2003 season, he willingly volunteered his services, which were gratefully accepted. At the 2003 SH he was the understudy Race Office Manager and then formally took over the post for the 2004 event; testament to his dedication, he is still in post 13 years later. Despite retiring from military life in 2015, he has continued to stay on as the Race Office Manager for the Exercise. His hard work was formally recognised when he became the first recipient of the ‘Helen Lovelock Award’ for his tremendous support to SPARTAN HIKE.
In 2015 he was instrumental in the reinvigoration of Ex SNOW LION (SL) headed by 51 Infantry Brigade and HQ Scotland, which is the Army’s reserve exercise. With his depth of knowledge and experience in running SPARTAN HIKE, he agreed to be the Race Office Manager for that exercise as well, which he has undertaken for the past three years.
Maj Ross Anderson Scots DG for support to Alpine
Maj Anderson has been actively involved in Alpine racing for the majority of his career, initially as a competitor and then latterly as an official, rising to become the Army’s leading Technical Delegate. He is also highly respected within British Skiing, having recently been invited to become a Federation Internationale Skiing (FIS) TD. As the Army’s senior TD, he has transformed the approach to competitive skiing by designing and implementing a regulatory framework, seen now as best practice. Highly dedicated, committed and passionate about racing, he has been at the forefront of necessary change, ensuring officials and competitors still enjoy a challenging activity, but nested in a fully accountable structure.
He has made a huge and lasting contribution to Army Skiing, developing it from a number of disparate events run by enthusiastic officials to one that is coordinated under a regulatory framework, accountable through a single body and run by professional and trained individuals, complying with the safe system of training. As a senior Committee Member, he has also been intimately involved in the contract letting process since it was introduced for Alpine. This has been a difficult process, but made much easier by his technical knowledge to ensure tender panels and ultimately contracts are fit for purpose and competitors race on the best prepared courses.
His overall contribution to Alpine, not only at Army level, but at the Inter Services and National levels cannot be overstated. His commitment, passion and willingness to tackle the most difficult and less glamourous areas, has hugely benefitted all involved in the sport.
Lt Col Tim Holmes REME for support to Snowboard
Lt Col Holmes has been involved with Army snowboarding as a competitor and official for the past 12 years, latterly filling the post of Secretary for three years. During this period he has demonstrated exceptional selfless commitment, investing heavily in the sport for the benefit of Army riders, orchestrating the indoor freestyle championships, supporting the freestyle training camp and championships in Kauntertal in Austria and deployment of the Army Team to the Inter Service Championships. His greatest accolade however, has been the organisation of the Army Championships in Stubai as the culminating event of each season; a demanding event testing skills and courage across parallel giant slalom, snowboard cross and slopestyle events. His immersive commitment, humility and calmness, have been pivotal to the successful delivery of events.
Approximately 700 riders annually compete in various snowboarding championships from Corps to Army level, and with some progressing to the British Championships. He has been central to the evaluation, down-selection and assurance of the contracted delivery of the Championship to construct and safely manage the event courses at the Army events. Nothing is ever too much trouble and he has always been willing to go the extra mile in delivering the administrative backbone, which has ensured the delivery of Army snowboarding events. Last season he also entered his Corps Championships and won the boarder cross event, demonstrating that he is not only an exceptional organiser but also a competitive rider.
Brig Suzanne Anderson for support to Telemark
Brig Anderson has been the Chairman of the Army Telemark Skiing Association for the past 6 years. During this time participation has grown from a core of 40 attendees, to over 140 competitors. This is very much down to her calm hand on the tiller, her relentless pursuit of excellence and a steadfast focus to make the discipline a professional and forward looking sport.
In 2013 the annual Championship was run out of a small resort in Austria, with much self-help and make-do. Today the annual Championship has found a home in the French Alps and is recognised for its hugely professional conduct, whilst maintaining a friendly family atmosphere. A similar approach has been seen in the development of the sports Safety and Governance coverage. Telemark is now backed up by the necessary risk registers, alcohol policies, medical governance and rigour that are necessary for the safe and stable future. She has also developed a very healthy relationship with the Telemark National Governing Body; three of the young Service competitors now work with the GB development squad and have a very promising Telemark career ahead of them.
All of this hard work has been achieved against her very busy day job as an Assistant Director and subsequent Head of Individual Development after her promotion to Brigadier. She has successfully transformed the sport from a minority sport, into a now stable discipline that sits very comfortably at the AWSA table. The sport has been hugely fortunate to have such a figurehead.