Scott McLaughlin nominated for ISPS Handa Sportsman of the Year award
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Motorsport has five young competitors in contention for the 57th annual ISPS Handa Halberg Awards next year.
The Halberg foundation has announced 70 nominations in six categories with the shortlist of finalists expected next month. The awards ceremony celebrating 2019 Kiwi sporting achievements will be held at Auckland’s Spark Arena on Thursday February 13.
Australian Supercars champion and Bathurst 1000 winner Scott McLaughlin (26) has been nominated for the ISPS Handa Sportsman of the Year award, one of 12 athletes nominated representing 11 different sports. McLaughlin was also a finalist for the 2018 award.
Success by Kiwi motorcycle racers has been recognised by two nominations in the High Performance Sport NZ Sportswoman of the Year award.
Dunedin’s Courtney Duncan is among 15 nominations after her success in the 2019 FIM Womens World Motocross Championship. Duncan, 23, dominated the world championship winning nine out of 10 races and finally clinched the title after three consecutive years of near misses.
Christchurch-based Avalon Biddle (27) is the other motorcycle racer in contention. Her nomination recognises her 2019 New Zealand Superbike Championship success in the 600cc SuperSport class.
Two Christchurch racers also feature among the 11 nominations for the Sky Sport Emerging Talent award.
Marcus Armstrong (19) represents the four-wheel disciplines due to his 2019 achievements including a runner-up finish in the FIA Formula 3 Championship as well as second place in the Castrol Toyota Racing Series.
Hamish MacDonald (20) made an international impression this year by winning the 125cc Youth class of the FIM World Enduro Championship. He fought back from a broken collarbone early in the series to become New Zealand’s first world champ in the enduro branch of the motorcycle sport.