Maurice Beatson is one of 15 finalists selected for the Norwood NZ Rural Sports Awards for 2019 on Friday, March 8 in Palmerston North.
The finalists are leaders in both traditional rural sports like shearing, fencing, wool handling and dog trials, and newer sports like gumboot throwing, cowboy action shooting and tree-climbing.
"The range of rural sports represented in this year's nominations is extraordinary, and I love the fact we're honouring people from young athletes just starting to make their mark to the lifetime achievers and those who work in the background to make sure our rural sports can happen," says Sir Brian Lochore, Chair of the New Zealand Rural Sports Awards Judging Panel.
"The awards are now in their third year and are going from strength to strength thanks to our fantastic sponsors and supporters."
There are five sections with three nominees in each. Maurice Beatson is in the Toyota Lifetime Legacy section with Ricky May of Ashburton in Harness Racing and Hugh McCarroll of Whangamatā in Shearing.
Maurice Beatson first represented New Zealand in the 1973 eventing team in Australia. Since then he has had a world-class international equestrian career, including appearances at the Seoul Olympics, World Equestrian Games and World Cup.
He has won countless titles in New Zealand and around the world, including almost 200 New Zealand Grand Prix titles. He has also captained several New Zealand representative teams at international competitions.
Maurice has also been active in equestrian administration since 1983, when he helped form the Central & Southern Hawke's Bay Show Jumping Group.
He has served on committees and as president for nine years, and attending Show Jumping Conference for most of the past 30 years. Maurice was Riders' Representative on the Show Jumping Board in 2014.
Maurice runs a sheep and beef farm and also breeds horses.
Finalists for the Allflex Sir Brian Lochore Award for an Outstanding Mainstream NZ Sports Person from a Rural Background will be announced at the Norwood NZ Rural Sports Awards Dinner on Friday 8 March at Awapuni Function Centre in Palmerston North, the night before the Hilux New Zealand Rural Games in Palmerston North where nominees and winners compete.
The complete list of nominees is:
Norwood NZ Rural Sportsman of the Year:
Tony Bouskill — Fencing, Napier. Kieran Fowler — Gumboot Throwing, Dunedin.
* James Kilpatrick — Tree Climbing, Tauranga
Skellerup NZ Rural Sportswoman of the Year:
* Nicky Ward-Allen — Tree Climbing, Eltham
* Pagan Karauria — Wool Handling, Alexandra
* Bex Baynes — Sheep Dog Trials, Wairoa
Fonterra NZ Rural Youth of the Year:
* Briar Burnett-Grant — Equestrian, Taupō
* Bradley McDowell — Cowboy Action Shooting, Whanganui
* Sheree Tomlinson — Harness Racing, Canterbury
Levno Contribution to Rural Sport:
* David James — NZ Arb, Blenheim
* Neil Sidwell — Shearing, Waiwera
* Nick Liefting — Fencing, Pukekohe
Toyota Lifetime Legacy:
* Ricky May — Harness Racing, Ashburton
* Hugh McCarroll — Shearing, Whangamatā
* Maurice Beatson — Equestrian, Dannevirke