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The Court of Trustees have adjudged that Elizabeth Armitstead (Lizzie) be granted the Award in recognition of her achievements in International Road and Track Cycling.


Lizzie Armitstead was born in Otley in 1988. She came into cycling under the guidance of British Cycling’s talent programme and quickly became a member of the junior academy team. In 2005 Lizzie won a silver medal in the Scratch Race at the Junior World Track Championships. She continued her success on both track and road and in 2008 became the under 23 Scratch Race Champion and was a member of the winning Team Pursuit at the European Championships.


At the 2009 World Championships she completed a full house, winning gold in the Team Pursuit, silver in the Scratch Race and bronze in the Points Race. In 2010 she collected two more World Track Championship silver medals.


On the road Lizzie turned professional in 2009 for Lotto-Belisol, moving to Cervelo in 2010. Her success continued with numerous stage wins in Europe and first place in the Under 23 National Road Race Championships in both 2009 and 2010. She completed her 2010 season by winning the Road Race silver medal at the Commonwealth Games in Delhi.            


Lizzie’s achievements have brought great honour to her country and to Yorkshire cycling and is justly worthy of this Award.


2010 Photo Lizzie Armitstead

The Court of Trustees has adjudged Betty Philipson worthy of the Award in recognition of her tireless efforts in cycling administration and in organising and assisting with many cycling events in Yorkshire for over 45 years.


A native of Hull, Betty Philipson started cycling at the age of 17 and in 1960 joined the cyclists Touring Club, riding with various local groups.  In 1966 Betty’s late husband Ron, together with a number of friends, formed the City Road Club (Hull) and three months afterwards Betty became the Club Secretary, a position which she still holds.  During her cycling career Betty has ridden solo, tandem, tandem trike and vintage cycles with Bygone Bikes.


Betty has for over 40 years been a prolific timekeeper, she has for a long period served on the CTT/RTTC Yorkshire District committee and has always supported the CTC York Rally.  In 1970 Betty became a BCF commissaire and for the next 10 years promoted and officiated at many road races including organising the 1973 BCF National Schoolboys Championship.

2011  Photo Betty Philipson 2011 Photo Bryan Peel (lifetime achievement)

The Court of Trustees makes the 2012 Award to Keith Lawton in recognition of his massive contribution to the administration of the sport of time trialling in the County of Yorkshire and nationally.


A lifelong cyclist, he entered the sport as a 14 year old in 1973.  As a member of Leeds Wellington Cycling Club he was an enthusiastic all-rounder, participating in club runs and longer tours, grass track and road racing but most importantly time trialling, in which he progressed to some outstanding performances at all distances.


Now a member of Elmet Cycle Racing Club, he sat on the Road Time Trials Council (RTTC) Yorkshire District Committee from 1981 to 2001, serving variously as Treasurer, Secretary and Chairman.  He was elected to the RTTC National Committee in 1996 and became National Competitions Secretary in 2000.  He then became RTTC Assistant Secretary in 2001 and has been joint National Secretary since 2009; in both these roles he has had special responsibility for competitions and development.  He was also instrumental in the transformation of RTTC into Cycling Time Trials Ltd in 2002, which has provided a firm foundation for the sport of time trialling in the 21st century.

2012  Photo Keith Lawton

This Lifetime Achievement Award is made to John Rawnsley of Bradford Racing Cycling Club in recognition of his continued dedication as organiser of the 3 Peaks Cyclo-Cross over its fifty editions.


John Rawnsley organised the inaugural 3 Peaks Cyclo-Cross in 1961, which he also competed in and won.  He has organised all 50 events since (two having been cancelled due to foot and mouth). The 3 Peaks has always been the toughest endurance event on the off road calendar and has gained international stature with hundreds of riders eager to test themselves over the scenic and most challenging mountains in Yorkshire.  For his commitment John received the C A Rhodes award in 1993 and he has since continued to organise the event, catering for an ever burgeoning interest.


Despite competing successfully at a high level and gaining medals in several championships, John has always worked hard as a coach and official.  He has been President of the Yorkshire Cyclo-Cross Association since 1975 and since 2006 he has organised national races in Peel Park, Bradford; these include two National Championships, five National Trophy events and an Inter Area Championship.  He has also organised various charity rides and triathlons over his beloved Yorkshire Dales.


2012 Photo John Rawnsley (lifetime achievement) 2013 Photo Bob Howden

Acknowledgement - Andrew Kennedy, Kennedy Images

Bryan was however mainly involved with the British Cycling Federation.  He was elected to the local committee in the 1970s and served as a BCF Commissaire from 1976 to 2008 including officiating for the first 11 years of the renowned Otley Town Centre Races.  He was the BCF West Yorkshire Registrar from 1980 to 2000 issuing an average of 800 racing and membership licences each year, and was a National Delegate on several occasions.   He was awarded the prestigious BCF Division Badge of Honour in 1994 and more recently the BC Certificate of Merit.


A quiet, modest and unassuming man few cyclists will know of Bryan’s immense amount of work and achievements, which have enabled Yorkshire to remain in the forefront of all facets of cycling.  Bryan richly deserves this first Lifetime Achievement Award given by the Trustees.

2014 - Gary Verity

The 2014 Award is made by the Court of Trustees to Gary Verity of Welcome to Yorkshire, for having brought exceptional honour to Yorkshire Cycling.


His vision of bringing the Tour de France Grand Départ to Yorkshire and his drive and determination to lead his team to a successful execution have raised the profile of Yorkshire as a tourist destination, as an area capable of hosting world class events and has massively increased participation in cycling.


Originating from Leeds, Gary Verity enjoyed a successful career in commerce and business, before his appointment as Chief Executive of Welcome to Yorkshire in 2008. His “think big” attitude soon had him targeting a visit to Yorkshire by the Tour de France– the third biggest sporting event in the world and one which would create a worldwide showcase for the magnificent Yorkshire scenery.  Against the odds he beat strong competition to secure the 2014 Grand Départ.


The visit by the Tour was an outstanding success, with vast crowds lining the routes of stage 1 through the Yorkshire Dales from Leeds to Harrogate and stage 2 from York to Sheffield via the West Riding and gruelling Pennine climbs.  Outstanding racing by the world’s top professional riders was on display and a worldwide audience of many millions saw “Gods Own County” at its finest.  A legacy has been created for future major international bike races and there has been a huge increase in tourism.


2014 Photo Gary Verity

2015 - Lizzie Armitstead

2015 Photo Lizzie Armitstead

Lizzie Armitstead is worthy of this Award, having in 2015 achieved outstanding victories in National and International road racing, culminating in the World Championship.


A daughter of Otley, Lizzie’s earlier cycling achievements were recognised by the 2010 C A Rhodes Award.  Since then her burning ambition and Yorkshire determination have seen her scale new heights and she now reigns supreme as world number one in her chosen sphere.


The year 2015 started well for Lizzie with stage wins and the overall in the Tour of Qatar.  Other victories in major European and US events followed, as she regularly demonstrated her ability to snatch wins from small breakaway groups.  


In June she came home and took an outstanding solo win in the National Road Race Championship, being unbeatable on the steep cobbled climb in Lincoln city centre.  She then returned to international racing and with victory in the GP de Plouay in August she sealed victory in the season long  World Cup Series.


September took Lizzie to the World Championships in Richmond, Virginia.  Towards the end of a long and aggressive race with no remaining team support and a break up the road victory seemed impossible.  However she displayed outstanding tactical ability to steal the lead in a final kilometre showdown, achieving a most deserved and popular win.

In the period since her previous C A Rhodes Award Lizzie’s road race wins include the National Championship in both 2011 and 2013, the 2013 Commonwealth Games and the 2014 World Cup Series.  She also took the silver medal in the 2012 London Olympics road race.


By these achievements Lizzie has achieved the objectives of the Award, bringing exceptional honour to Yorkshire and raising the profile of women’s cycling.

2016 - Steve Bate MBE and Adam Duggleby MBE

Steve Bate and Adam Duggleby are worthy of the Award, having brought exceptional honour to Yorkshire cycling, winning two golds and a bronze medal at the Rio de Janeiro Paralympics.


Whilst living in Scotland New Zealander Steve Bate excelled as a climber, despite his visual impairment.  Following a successful trial for the British Cycling Paralympic Squad he then relocated to Yorkshire.


Born and bred in the East Riding of Yorkshire, Adam Duggleby began cycling at an early age.  He displayed exceptional talent and became champion in the 2000 Juvenile Circuit Race, the 2001 GHS National 10 Mile and in both 2001 and 2002 the Junior 25 Mile.  After university he resumed his success with wins in the team time trial and track national championships.


British Cycling paired Adam and Steve together on the Paralympic Squad and they began tandem racing in 2014.  Early international successes were achieved in UCI Para-cycling World Cup events with a full tally of gold, silver and bronze in road races and time trials.  In 2016 they continued their World Cup rides with a time trial bronze in Ostend, earning selection for the Rio Paralympics.

2016 bate+duggleby on podium 10x8 WEB

In scintillating form for Rio they opened their account with gold in the track pursuit, achieving two world records in the process.  They followed this with another gold in the road time trial and completed their campaign with a strong ride for bronze in the road race.


Steve and Adam also made their mark in domestic time trials as part of their Rio preparation by establishing men’s tandem competition records at 10 miles (17:06) and 25 miles (43:23); in this they attained an outstanding level of achievement in Yorkshire cycling and are further qualified to receive the award.

2017 - Mike Williams

2017 Mike Williams

Mike's most well regarded annual promotion has been the hugely popular Team Swift Charity 10.  Over its seven years this event has provided hundreds of fast time trial rides and in the process raised over £20,000 for the Macmillan Nurses charity.


Cycling Time Trials recently awarded Mike their Gold Badge of Honour.  Mike now takes an enforced health rest as the cyclists of Yorkshire salute his achievements.

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2018 - David Hall

The Trustees are proud to make the 2018 Award to David Hall, Yorkshire Regional Director of Sustrans, the sustainable transport charity, from 1994 to 2014.


David was born in Leicester in 1949 and moved to Leeds in 1958, where he still lives.  He qualified as a chartered surveyor in 1970 and became an estate agent.  He cycled extensively in the UK and throughout Europe and he could see that society's  increasing reliance on car use was unsustainable.


After riding the then recently developed York - Selby cycle track David joined Sustrans as a supporter and attended their AGM in York, where he met founder and CEO John Grimshaw.  Within two days he was invited to Sustran's Bristol headquarters and accepted their lead role in Yorkshire.


In developing the National Cycle Network throughout Yorkshire David has negotiated with landowners to secure disused railway lines, bridges and corridors of land.  By appealing to their common sense in recognising the necessity to reduce car reliance he was able to develop many projects throughout the county.  He was equally at home talking persuasively to local authorities, government officials and elected representatives to secure their support.

Cycle paths which David has delivered include Spen Valley Greenway, Nidderdale Greenway, Wetherby - Newton Kyme, Great Northern Rail Trail and many others throughout Yorkshire.  These routes have incorporated many reopened viaducts,  including Chain Bar at Cleckheaton which carries the Greenway over 14 lanes of the M62.  Many miles of safe routes have been created and all have been embraced by local communities and are used widely by those from further afield, especially cyclists.  He has also worked with partner agencies on longer distance routes, notably the Trans Pennine Trail, the Way of the Roses and other projects throughout the county.


David's passion for this work has left Yorkshire with an outstanding network, encouraging behavioural change in favour of cycling.  In doing so he has rendered service to the furtherance of cycling in Yorkshire and is justly worthy of this Award.

2018 Photo David Hall

2019 - Ben Swift

image1-Ben Swift (cropped 10x8a)_web

Ben Swift is worthy of the 2019 Award, having achieved victory in the British Road Race Championship, the culmination of 12 years competing successfully as a World Tour professional.


Rotherham born Ben, now aged 32, rode his first race aged 3 and after an early BMX career he rapidly made an impression in road and track races.  As his ability developed he won track national junior championships and competed internationally.


Ben represented Great Britain in the 2008 Olympic road race and was 4th in the under-23 World Road Championship, then commenced his pro road career with Katusha,.  He joined the newly formed Team Sky for 2010, winning the overall, points and young rider classifications and a stage of the Tour de Picardie; he followed this in 2011 with more stage wins in Spain, Switzerland, California and Australia.  Continuing to mix disciplines, in 2012 at the Melbourne Track World Championships he excelled with gold in the scratch race and silver in both the points race and the madison, before switching back to the road for more successes.

In the following years he collected more stage wins, was 2nd in the National Road Race Championship and achieved 3rd then 2nd places in Milan-San Remo; he also placed 5th in the World Road Championship in Norway.


After a 2 year spell riding for UAE, in 2019 he returned to Sky, then rebranded Team Ineos.  His season started badly after he sustained serious injuries on a pre-season training camp, but coming into form later he achieved a major ambition in winning the British Road Championship at Norwich.  He went into the World Road Championship at Harrogate as team leader and despite the diabolical weather conditions he displayed true Yorkshire grit to survive in front of his home supporters.


As a strong sprinter and domestique Ben has competed twice in all three Grand Tours - France, Italy and Spain.  He epitomises all that is admirable about Yorkshire racing cyclists and by his many achievements he has brought exceptional honour to Yorkshire.

2010 - Elizabeth (Lizzie) Armitstead

2011 - Betty Philipson

In 1990 Betty was joint organiser of the RTTC National 25 Mile Championship.  She has also organised the Yorkshire heat of the GHS schoolboy championships and promoted many other time trials.  In 2003 Betty was proud to receive the Hull (City Image) Community Leader Award.


Betty’s extraordinary contribution to Yorkshire cycling, given willingly and cheerfully, continues and makes her justly entitled to this Award.

2011 - Bryan Peel (Lifetime Achievement Award)

THE Court of Trustees has adjudged that a Lifetime Achievement Award be granted to John Bryan Peel in recognition of over sixty years of administrative and support work in furtherance of the sport of cycling.


Bryan Peel joined the Drighlington Bicycle Club in 1947, aged 12, and has remained a member ever since; in 1956 he became the Club secretary, an office he held for over 50 years.  In his early years he rode time trials as a middle marker and in the 1950s and 60s he helped local children to pass the Cycle proficiency Test.


Bryan was elected to the Yorkshire Cycling Federation Executive Committee in 1963 and was Secretary from 1970 to 2010.  On becoming an Andy Wilson Memorial Trustee he organised the 50 mile event from 1979 to 2009.  He also became a C.A. Rhodes Memorial Trustee in 1989, a position he still holds.


In the 1970s Bryan joined the Road Time Trials Council (now Cycling Time Trials) District Committee.  He has organised two National Championships - the Team Time Trial in 1977 and the 100 miles in 2009 - and was awarded the RTTC National Certificate of Honour in 2006.

2012 - Keith Lawton

Keith is also a timekeeper and course measurer and he has organised many open time trials over a period of 30 years.  He continues to promote the sport within Yorkshire despite his national administrative duties.


The Trustees acknowledge the unstinting hard work of Keith Lawton in furtherance of the sport of time trialling in Yorkshire; he is justly worthy of the Award.

2012 - John Rawnsley (Lifetime Achievement Award)

The Trustees are honoured to make the 2017 Award to Michael (Mike) Williams, of Team Swift, a prolific promoter of cycle time trialling for over 40 years.


Born in Kingston upon Hull in 1945, Mike took to cycling when aged 15 with Hull Thursday Road Club.  He remained a member for about 40 years, serving in various official positions including eight years as President.  He also organised open 10 and 25 mile time trials and competed regularly himself.


As a teacher of mathematics Mike had a demanding profession; he rose to deputy head and also shouldered additional responsibilities to further assist the more able pupils in the Hull area.

In 2001 he joined Pete Read Racing Team, later to become Team Swift.  As retirement approached he continued racing but took on additional cycling administrative and organisational duties.  He joined Cycling Time Trials (CTT) Yorkshire committee and soon became District Secretary, a position recently relinquished after nine years.


During recent years Mike has organised, on average, eight time trials per year - under the guise of Team Swift, Veterans Time Trials Association (VTTA) and Yorkshire Cycling Federation (YCF).  He has also organised the following National Championships  - CTT 10 miles, CTT 50km 3-up team, VTTA 10 miles and VTTA 15 miles.  He has assisted at numerous other events and been largely instrumental in ensuring the ongoing survival of Yorkshire's only 12 hour time trial.

John Rawnsley remains a giant within cyclo cross, for which he was inducted into the British Cycling Hall of Fame in 2010.  He has for a large part been most instrumental in the continued growth of the sport within the county - Yorkshire cycling and the Trustees are proud to recognise his massive contribution.

2013 - Bob Howden

At national level Bob joined the Board of British Cycling in 1998 and has variously served as Vice Chairman of the Board and Chairman of various specialist Commissions, where his technical knowledge of road racing has proved invaluable.  He has also served as Chief Judge or Chief Commissaire at numerous major road and circuit events throughout the country.


Bob Howden now progresses to become President and Chairman of British Cycling as the sport enjoys unprecedented participation; under his leadership cycling is assured of even greater success.  The Trustees are proud to acknowledge the commitment and competence of this most worthy recipient of the Award.

The Court of Trustees makes the 2013 Award to Bob Howden in recognition of his outstanding service to the furtherance of cycling both in Yorkshire and nationally, including his recent election as President of British Cycling.


Bob began cycling in 1968 with Calder Clarion, before becoming a founder member of Wakefield CC in 1974.  He enjoyed early racing success and was Junior Division Road Champion, then progressing to first category and representing West Yorkshire several times in his 24 year racing career.


After qualifying as a road commissaire in 1981 Bob took an increasing interest in administrative affairs, becoming a valued member of the former BCF West Yorkshire committee.  In addition to his current role as Chairman of British Cycling Yorkshire Region he has organised the National Road Championships in 2005, 2008 and 2012 and in intervening years the Ryedale Grand Prix. He has also organised Division Road Championships and participated in the organising team of the Yorkshire Festival of Cycling; he is a prolific organiser of road events to the highest standard.

Organised cycling within the County of Yorkshire is now enjoying unprecedented popularity; we are proud to be Yorkshire Cyclists and to have witnessed, in the words of TdF Race Director Christian Prudhomme, “the grandest of Grand Départs”.  The Trustees are honoured to be able to acclaim Gary Verity for this extraordinary success.