Special feature: your Sportsperson of the Year nominees

NOMINEES: Senior Sportsperson of the Year nominees clockwise from top left Jarrod Hall, Amy Townsend, Haylee Redfern (picture by Donovan Chin Photography), Andrew Hubbard and Justin Roylance (photo Pureart Creative Images).
NOMINEES: Senior Sportsperson of the Year nominees clockwise from top left Jarrod Hall, Amy Townsend, Haylee Redfern (picture by Donovan Chin Photography), Andrew Hubbard and Justin Roylance (photo Pureart Creative Images).

Forbes' top sports achievers of 2021 will be recognised with the return of the Sportsperson of the Year Awards, but this year's presentation will look a little different.

The committee has made the decision to cancel the presentation dinner due to the number of COVID-19 cases in the local community.

"Nominations are of a very high standard and will be judged, by an independent panel, this week," secretary Anita Morrison said.

Presentations will be scheduled in a COVID-safe way for Saturday February 26.

The committee is delighted to announce that special guest Jessica Pascoe will be in attendance to congratulate the winners.

The judges have their work cut out: this year's nominees are once again nothing short of outstanding.

Here are the nominees, from the judges' report with thanks to the SOYA committee.

Senior Sportsperson of the Year

The nominees are:


Jarrod Hall is well known in Country and Central West Rugby as one of the best hookers and was recognised in 2020 when he was named the Blowes Clothing Cup Player of the Year. Voting for this award is conducted by the Central West Rugby Union's Referees Association officials weekly.

Jarrod is a regular Blue Bulls representative teams and has been an integral member of the Forbes Rugby Union Club on and off the field since joining the club seven years ago.

He is a very active member of the committee and club, coaching, mentoring juniors, playing, helping out whenever and wherever needed and is a huge asset.


Andrew Hubbard has been playing with the Forbes Platypi sine the Under 17's and ran on for his first senior game in 1997. In 1998 he made his First Grade debut and the rest is history.

The club celebrated Andrew's 400th senior game in 2021 as well as payed tribute to his dedication and commitment the club on and off the field.

At training he is an inspiration and on the field he is fiercely competitive, whilst always a gracious loser. His positive energy and work ethic are infectious and he is an exceptional leader.

Andrew has not only contributed as a player within the club he has held positions including captaincy, coach, mentor, executive and non-executive committee and stepped up whenever needed. He was instrumental in organising a fundraising and recognition day for club stalwart, Tracey Prior, who is battling cancer.


Haylee Redfern has claimed two firsts for Australia in the IKMF Worlds Championships in Kettlebell.

Competing against 16 nations, she took out first place in her class in the long cycle, a clean and jerk action, completing 327 repetitions in 30 minutes, and first in the short cycle or straight jerk with 423 repetitions in thirty minutes. The two wins secured her first Master of Sport in both events.

Prior to the IKMF World Championships Haylee finished with a Candidate Master of Sport OALC and overall 3rd place and a personal best of 108 repetitions in the 2021 Girevoy Sport Australian Nationals.

She was one of the first athletes in Australia to try the 12kg Jerk and completed 392 repetitions in thirty minutes to come away with a Candidate Master of Sport and the Australian National Long Cycle Championship.

Haylee is personal trainer and is the Active Farmer coordinator for Eugowra.


Justin made a huge impact in the first two rounds of the 2021 Penrite V8 Superboats Championship series winning both rounds in the International 400-Class Group A competition.

This was not a bad effort after having a year off due to Covid restrictions.

Sadly, the Championship series was again stopped due to Covid and was put on hold until 2022 when it will recommence at the end of February for the last three rounds to be completed.

Justin is also the President of the Australian Formula Jet Sprint Association.


Amy in her second year in the sport of rugby union is already making a name for herself.

The front-rower for the Forbes Rugby Union Women's team, was selected in the 2020 Central West Blue Bullettes who were successful in defending the Thomson Cup at the NSW Country Championships.

Amy overcame a serious knee injury - ligaments and broken femur - to return to form which shows her dedication and determination to sport.

Junior sportsperson of the year

There's an incredible 29 nominees for the junior sportsperson of the year award, highlighting the depth of talent and commitment in our community.

They are: Sophia Angrove (school sport); Jackson Beaudin (all-rounder); Maddox Bruem (all rounder); Laura Chudleigh (athletics); Sam Drane (motorbike racing); Tom Drane (motorbike racing); Annika Dukes (hockey); Annabelle Dwyer (all rounder); Stirling Francis (school sport); Eli Gharib (rugby league); Dayne Hamilton (rugby league and touch); Rydah Hancock (all rounder); Marcus Hardy (cricket); Andie Hodder (karate); Claudia Hodder (school sport); Charlie Howe (swimming); Rosie Hurford (all rounder); Thompson Hurford (rugby union); Gracie-May Lander (swimming); Claire Little (drag racing); Reece Matheson (all rounder); Leroy McNamara (all rounder); Cayden Metzling (AFL and cricket); Abby Nolan-Hodges (soccer); Campbell Rubie (rugby league); Lachlan Wallce (all rounder); Jakiel Ware (swimming, touch, athletics, rugby league); Beau Wheeldon (athletics); Tess Worland (swimming).

Many of these have taken out the Central West Junior Sports Achiever monthly awards, which you can read more about in our earlier story.

Tom and (inset) Sam Drane have had a successful two years on track.

Tom and (inset) Sam Drane have had a successful two years on track.

Our other nominees are:


Sophia has shown tremendous improvement in her efforts towards sport. Sophia represented Forbes Public School at Lachlan level in Athletics and has brought this experience and leadership back to school to assist her fellow peers.


Sam has entered the motorbike racing scene and is already making a name for himself.

Sam was named 2020 NSW Junior Dirt Track champion for his class, and debuted in the 2021 Oceania Junior Cup.

He placed as high as second in this national competition in his second race, and 11th in his first and third races.


Tom has added honours to his impressive riding resume in the past two years, including another State title when he took out the NSW Junior Dirt Track championship for his class for the third time.

Tom was one of three riders to represent Australia in the 2021 Asia Talent Cup. Aged just 15, he was one of five rookies in the field of 23 athletes up to the age of 21 and achieved a top 10 finish.

Tom placed second in the Oceania Junior Cup at the Australian Super Bike Championships, and second in his first race at the 300 Supersport.

He also placed third in the R3 championship despite missing a round while racing overseas.


Rydah achieved success at the Lachlan PSSA swimming, cross country and athletics carnivals to qualify for Western.

He was also selected for the Western Touch team.

Rydah demonstrated outstanding participation and skills during school PSSA Knockout sporting competition including Mixed Netball, Boys Soccer, Boys Basketball, Boys Touch, Boys Cricket and Rugby League.

He was nominated for the Lachlan PSSA rugby league trials.


Claudia qualified for the Public School Sports Association State swimming team in 2020, unfortunately COVID-19 saw the cancellation of the event.

Claudia was named Forbes Public School's cross country champion for her age group; and athletics champion in 2020.

She was a joint recipient of Forbes Public School's excellence in sport award: she participated outstandingly in all Lachlan PSSA gala days she was eligible for. She is an excellent role model in sport.


Stirling qualified for the Public School Sports Association State swimming team, unfortunately COVID caused the cancellation of the event.

Stirling was our Forbes Public school cross country, athletics, and swimming champion for his age group.

He was named joint recipient of Forbes Public School's excellence in sport award: he participated outstandingly in all Lachlan PSSA gala days he was eligible for. He is an excellent role model in sport.


Rosie shone in the pool as Forbes Fins club age champion in 2020 and 2021; Forbes Public School's junior girl swimming champion in 2020 and 11 years girls swimming champion in 2021.

She was a member of the relay team that qualified for State for both years, but could only compete at that level in 2021 due to COVID cancellations. As an individual she competed in all four strokes at Western level.

Rosie is also a gymnast - placing first on floor, second on beam and bars, and first overall at the only competition in the past two years. This would have qualified her for State if this was held.

She also qualified for the Western athletics carnival in high jump.

Rosie is a member of the Forbes Magpies Under 11 league tag team, and the Forbes Public School soccer team that made it to the semi-finals of the Western PSSA knockout.

She was a member of the FPS cricket, league tag, touch football teams, netball, AFL and girls rugby league teams.


Soccer has been Abby's passion from the age of four. She has played in numerous soccer teams, enhancing her skills through many training sessions that occur in Orange, Wagga, Sydney and Canberra.

From the Lachlan Representative Team to the Women's National Premier League in Canberra, it is evident that Abby is focused on her career in soccer, with her outstanding skills both on the field and with her teammates.

Abby plays for the Wagga City Wanderers, travelling to Wagga or Canberra every Sunday to compete since she was 15.

She was selected to play for the country national team at the National Youth Championships in Coffee Harbour, and has competed at the State titles for three consecutive years.

Abby played for the Under 17s Western Football Club in the National Premier League, represented Red Bend in the Bathurst Diocesan soccer team and Bill Turner Cup.

She also trains and coaches young upcoming soccer stars.


Lachlan is St Laurence's senior boy swimming champion, breaking two school swimming records in his 100m freestyle and 50m backstroke.

Lachlan was the captain of the Wilcannia Forbes diocese swim team captain, a country swimming and State Age swimming finalist as well as PSSA Polding and NSW CPS swimming representative.

He also represented NSW CPS in cricket, touch, rugby league, rugby union and cross country.

He was captain of the reigning Forbes Junior Rugby Union Under 12s and best back for the team as well as captain of the Central West Under 12s team.

Lachlan was awarded St Laurence's School Excellence in Sport award.


Jakieal broke four school swimming records on his way to becoming Forbes Public School's swimming champion for his age group.

He went on to win all his events at Lachlan carnival to qualify for the Lachlan PSSA swimming team and go on to Western, where he qualified for four events at State level.

Jackieal also performed outstandingly with Forbes Fins, being named his age champion.

Beyond swimming, he shone at the Forbes Public School athletics carnival, came second in the cross country and represented the school at gala days when restrictions allowed.

MAKING HISTORY: The Forbes Junior Platypi Under 12s were named the 2020 premiers after defeating Wellington Redbacks. Picture: SUPPLIED

MAKING HISTORY: The Forbes Junior Platypi Under 12s were named the 2020 premiers after defeating Wellington Redbacks. Picture: SUPPLIED

Team of the Year

The nominees are:


The team of Jake Tomlinson, Emily Molloy, Eliza Fahey, Meg Fahey and Jane Tomlinson (Manager) competed in the 2021 North West Equestrian Expo at Coonabarabran for the first time achieving amazing results.

They've brought home medals in events ranging from pentatholon to showjumping and competed across team penning, the Six Bar event, One Day Event and combined training.


Team members: James Metzeling (Coach), Andrew Glasson (Manager), Max Hazell, Bryce Tandy, Dempsey O'Connell, Ash Kennedy, Marcus Hardy, Jackson Browne, Cayden Metzeling, Thompson Hurford, Gus Field, Cameron Gordan, Mac Glasson, Lachlan Wallace.

Forbes' Under 12's representative cricket team made their way to their second consecutive grand final in the Lachlan Cricket Council competition in 2021.

The team remained undefeated in the southern pool of their competition, defeating rivals Parkes in their semi-final and then worthy opponents in Gilgandra-Wellington.

The win in 2021 was the icing on the cake after the 2020 win in the same competition. It was the first time since the 1985/86 season Forbes had won the combined Lachlan and Macquarie Under 12's Representative competition. It was a tense battle between Forbes and an impressive Dubbo side with Forbes prevailing by just eight runs.


Team members: Brad McMillan (Coach), Mitchell Jack (Manager), Darren Butler (Trainer), Jack Hartwig (Captain), Toby Denyer, Sam Richards, Issac Sly, Coby Ryan, Sam Raumati, Matt Noakes, Isaac Nash, Toby Pout, Brodie Acret, Billy Phillips, Preston Thorpe, Tyson Smith, Harry Scott, Hayden Morrison, High Scott, Darcy Leadbitter, Tom Philips, Sean Towney, Kyle Bolam, Connor Greenhalgh and Lincoln Godden.

The reigning minor premiers, the Forbes Magpies Under 18's Rugby League Team hosted the 2020 Maas Western Youth League grand final achieving a commanding win over Dubbo CYMS 22-10. This was back to back premierships for this team having won the title in 2019.


Team included: Robyn Kenny (Coach), Marg Spackman (Manager), Gabrielle Miller-McMillan (Primary Carer), Monica Morrison (Bench Official), Libby Dallimore (Umpire), Karen Hargraves (Umpire), Kate Loneragan, Nicole Mee, Chloe Madden, Natalie Carthew, Melanie Cowhan, Alex Bayley, Ellie Flick, Monique Pointon, Shannon Hurley, Kate Kelly, Hannah Mattiske and Joelene Grace.

Placed third in Division One of the West Central West Regional League which covers over two thirds of NSW. The first Forbes team in many years to compete in Division One which is normally dominated by the larger associations of Orange, Bathurst and Dubbo. Forbes had wins against all teams except Orange who were the eventual winners. Despite injury to key players the team was very competitive against the dominant association teams.


Team Members: Tony Wallace (2020 Coach), Chris Francis (2020 Coach), David Hodder (2021 Coach), Randal Grayson (2021 Coach), Craig Bruem (2020 & 2021 Manager), 2020 Players: Reece Matheson, Bobby Mundy, Brock Drady, Cameron Gordon, George Field, Hamish Nicholson, Isaac Page, Jai Wheeldon, Joe Smith, Lachlan Wallace, Leroy McNamara, Liam Fraser, Mac Glasson, Maddox Bruem, Max Hazell, Michael Price, Mitch Stocks, Stirling Francis, Teddy Mundy, Thompson Hurford, Toutai Lavaka,

2021 Players: Angus Quade, Archie Aveyard, Ash Kennedy, Aurora Farrelly, Bobby Mundy, Brock Drady, Cameron Gordon, Freddie Francis, Gus Field, Jaggar King, Joseph Mortimer, Lachlan Wallace, Leroy McNamara, Liam Fraser, Mac Glasson, Maddox Bruem, Max Hazell, Mitch Stocks, Snow Hodder, Teddy Mundy, Thompson Hurford, Tom Grayson, Toutai Lavaka, Will Constable, William Watson.

The Under 12's went through the regular season undefeated, winning all of their games convincingly scoring a record 297 points with only 10 points scored against them.

The grand final score was Forbes Platypi 19 Wellington Redbacks 7. They secured the Forbes Rugby Club's maiden Junior title in 25 years in the Central West competition.

The squad is very young with 16 of the 23 players remaining in the Under 12 competition for 2021. This playing group has progressed together through the Walla program and this was a just reward for the efforts of all players, coaches and support staff.

Covid 19 restrictions played havoc with sporting competitions in 2021 but it was not enough to stop the Forbes Platypi Junior Rugby Union Under 12's from claiming their second title in the Central West competition. Once again the team were undefeated for the season.


Local anglers, Jamie Loomes, Nathan Skeers and Mitchell Skeers reeled in a big win at the 2021 Teams Fishing Australia Boats and More Native Classic.

The catch and release competition ran over three days and attracted 48 teams. The catch and release competition is scored on the combined length consisting of the five biggest Murray Cod and the five biggest Golden Perch caught over the three days.

The team had a combined length of 722.5cm which was almost 100cm more than their nearest competitor. The biggest Murray Cod the team caught was 102cm long, while the biggest Golden Perch caught was 60cm.

SOYA: Coach Robyn Kenny with Forbes' first open netball team bound for regionals in more than 20 years. Picture: SUPPLIED

SOYA: Coach Robyn Kenny with Forbes' first open netball team bound for regionals in more than 20 years. Picture: SUPPLIED

Coach / Trainer of the Year 

The nominees are:


Long-serving netball coach Robyn Kenny both coaches our local netball teams (from the very youngest to the highest representative level) and mentors the next generation of coaches.

This year she coached our Open Representative Team - Forbes' first in 20 years - to third place in Division 1 of the West Central West Regional League and coached a very young 17s representative team to a competitive representative level.

Robyn coaches Forbes' youngest players in Net Set Go and oversaw our 11 years carnival team through a season of continuous improvement.

She also committed many extra hours to ensure training could continue in a Covid safe manner by coaching two players at a time during lockdown.


Alex is the sole Coach/Manager for the Under 12's Forbes Swampies Junior AFL team. Even though we could not field a full side he still managed to coach five boys who travelled to Orange to combine with their team.

Alex also managed to successfully run the Auskick program and juggled both the Under 12 Boys and numerous other Junior Auskick players.


Laurie Norris has dedicated much of his life to making sure that generations of locals enjoy horses and achieve in the competitions associated with them.

Laurie teaches riders about all facets of horsemanship - care, riding and importantly safety. He is heavily involved in the Forbes Pony Club and is busy on monthly rally days checking gear and assessments followed by running exercises and activities for riders to continually improve their skills and abilities.

He tailors these activities to meet the needs of all riders and ensures that they are appropriate for their age and ability level.

Laurie is still a competitive show jumper and even though the past two years have been challenging with competitions cancelled due to Covid restrictions, Laurie has been involved with a team of like-minded people running very successful show jumping events to maintain participation in the sport.

NOMINEES: Colin Hodges has been the voice of country racing for so many of us for more than 50 years now.

NOMINEES: Colin Hodges has been the voice of country racing for so many of us for more than 50 years now.

Referee / Umpire / Official of the Year

The nominees are:


Darren Butler has had a very long association with the Forbes Magpies Rugby League Club, and is one of those who makes sure it runs smoothly during the on and off season.

He is a badged referee and mentors young referees, teaching the skills needed to become accredited.

He has held many executive and committee positions over the years including, President, Referee Coordinator and even Canteen Manager.

Darren is the current Manager of the Magpies First Grade side as well as Trainer to many of the other age groups.

Darren is a club stalwart - first to arrive on game days, assisting with set up, maintenance and trouble shooting and nine times out of ten is one of the last to leave.


2021 marks five decades since Colin Hodges got his start calling races with a single appearance in the village of Goolagong and is well known throughout the region.

Experienced race caller in the 1950s and 1960s, Bobby Gunn gave Colin his first call and often got him to fill in when there were a number of races in different towns on the same day.

Colin became interested in calling races after a day at Bedgerabong races with his Mother and Father at the age of 14. He called his first race at about 20 years of years and hasn't stopped.

Colin calls races right across regional NSW. He estimates he's called the names of over 150,000 horses. He also spent 14 years calling races in a jungle in Vanuatu to support fundraising for disaster recovery.

In 2017 Colin has been awarded an Order of Australia Medal (OAM) in the Queen's birthday honours for service to the horse racing industry as a radio broadcaster.


Elly played with her friends in the Wednesday evening Autumn competition and performed the umpiring duties for the team. She received coaching from experienced umpires and quickly earned her Bronze certificate by the end of the Autumn competition.

She concentrated on her umpiring during the shortened Spring competition, usually umpiring two games each night. She developed great maturity and confidence and showed improvement in every game she umpired.

NOMINEE: Harvey Elliott (centre) with Forbes Jockey Club vice president Tom Molloy, and president John Rennick in the restored historic grandstand at the Forbes racecourse.

NOMINEE: Harvey Elliott (centre) with Forbes Jockey Club vice president Tom Molloy, and president John Rennick in the restored historic grandstand at the Forbes racecourse.

Administrator of the Year

The nominees are:


Sonia is involved with a number of sports serving as registrar for Forbes Little Athletics; secretary Forbes Auto Sports Club and Forbes Junior AFL Club; Vice President of Forbes Amateur Swimming Club.

She's vice president of the Lachlan Public School Sports Association and coordinator of Lachlan PSSA touch football and cross country.

Sonia is also a committee member and club photographer for Forbes Magpies Junior Rugby League capturing those all-important memories.


Harvey Elliott has been involved with the Forbes Jockey Club since 2004, including 10 years as Secretary, Bar Manager and delegate to various racing authorities.

During his time as secretary he has been responsible for attracting grants to make improvements to the grounds which included watering systems, grandstand restoration and an outdoor undercover area.

He has been responsible for liaising with Bankstown Sports Club for many years, running the Calcutta and organising their annual trips to Forbes.

The last two years have been particularly busy with the extra work caused by COVID restrictions and health orders.


Committee: Monica Morrison (President), Carmen Duff (Vice President), Carolyn Duncan (Treasurer), Lyn Ford (Secretary), Robyn Kenny (Coach Convenor), Marg Spackman (Umpire Convenor), Gabe McMillan (Selection Convenor).

The committee guided the Association through Covid disruptions including hosting a shortened Spring competition in addition to our Autumn and Winter competitions.

They hosted a very successful carnival in May with more than 1000 people in attendance - including more than 500 players.

After having a Tri-Towns competition fall over at the last minute, launched a successful Junior Wednesday night competition with a great participation rate.

The committee continually applies for funding to reduce the costs for players and increase opportunities for participation. They've secured grant funding to completely refurbish the canteen building and for player equipment and storage facilities.


Alex Milsom has single handily got AFL up and running as a Forbes Club. He developed AFL in Forbes for Juniors and Auskick during the last two years with the challenges of the pandemic.

He formed a committee, fielded a team, obtained sponsorship and uniforms for the Forbes Swampies. He helped develop the AFL 9's senior team and partnered with Parkes to enable AFL to succeed in the area.

Overall honours

Other key awards on the night are the All Rounder, Forbes Sportsperson of the Year and Runner Up. All nominees who meet the criteria are eligible for consideration for these awards.