Promising triathlete Marc Austin has been named Scotland’s Young Sports Person of the Year – picking up his award at a star-studded ceremony in Glasgow just hours after completing a maths exam.
The University of Stirling student is used to juggling swimming, cycling and running and it was just as well, as he made it in perfect time to collect the coveted prize at the Sunday Mail sportscotland Scottish Sports Awards 2013.
Austin, from Scotstoun, received the award in recognition of a stunning final season racing as a junior, winning the silver medal at the World Championships and bronze at the European Championships.
“I was more surprised than anything else as I wasn’t expecting to win,” said Austin modestly, despite having already collected four further titles in recent months, including being named Scottish Triathlete and British Elite Junior Male of the Year.
“I usually send the awards on to my mum as she likes to look at them. I’ve a couple with me in Stirling so I’ll take them home over Christmas. It’s a bit strange as you do a race to win it, not an award, but it’s really nice to be recognised for the hard work put in over the season and all the days training.
“It was a fantastic night at the ceremony meeting so many sports stars and hearing about the achievements of others over the past year.”
Austin was shortlisted alongside British Boys Amateur golf champion Ewen Ferguson and Stirling Sport & Exercise Science student Ross Murdoch. Murdoch, from Stirlingshire, broke the Scottish breaststroke record and posted the third fastest time in the world this year en route to qualification for his first FINA World Swimming Championships.
Austin added: “It was great to be shortlisted alongside Ross [Murdoch] as I know how hard it is to reach the top in swimming and he has done this at such a young age. What he has done is incredible and hopefully next year we will both be ready to perform if selected for the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games.”
Once his exams are over, Austin is heading to Fuerteventura for warm-weather training with the British squad. Both Austin and Murdoch receiving funding and academic support from Winning Students, Scotland’s national sports scholarships for students.
Also at the Scottish Sports Awards, former Winning Students wheelchair tennis player Gordon Reid was shortlisted in the Disability Sports category and Glasgow City LFC, which features a plethora of Winning Students-supported footballers, was named Team of the Year.