Nine Times British Champion Keith Atkinson gets BBC ‘2007 Sportsman of the Year’ Nomination
Keith Atkinson, who is the nine times British Formula windsurfing champion and the most successful windsurfer ever in the ‘Blue Ribbon’ Formula class, was on his way to this years UKWA Annual Dinner being held in Poole on Saturday to collect his awards as the UK’s 2007 Triple Formula Windsurfing Champion when he was handed a letter advising him that the BBC had nominated him for the 2007 BBC South East ‘SPORTSMAN OF THE YEAR’ award.
Last year Keith was awarded the BBC South East ‘Watersports Personality’ of the year award and this is his third year in succession to be honoured with a BBC nomination.
The BBC have recognised Keith Atkinson’s outstanding achievements during this year, picking up all three windsurfing titles, this being a repeat of his 2006 performance and the third consecutive year that he has been the overall British Champion.
In May Keith successfully defended the first of his titles by winning the 2007 British Open at Bridlington.
He then went on to win the 2007 UKWA Inland Series Title culminating with a superb six out of six clear wins at the final event held at Rutland Water in September.
He also gained the highest points in the British National Cup series, a clear 30 ahead of his nearest rival, enabling him to retain the overall British Formula Windsurfing Championship Title for 2007.
All this was despite a back injury sustained in the Welsh Cup that took him out of this and two further crucial events in mid season at Derwent and Eastbourne that then looked destined to end his 2007 challenge.
Keith also picked up two further titles in 2007 by winning the Rutland Marathon in May and the Eastbourne Masterblast.
In addition to this very busy year Keith Atkinson was the driving force in organising and staging of the first Felixstowe Xtremefest Sports event over the Bank Holiday Weekend. The aim of this new initiative was to promote sport to children and youths steering them into worthwhile activities and away from the temptations of drugs and street crime. Both the Suffolk County Council and County Police force backed Keith’s successful project. In addition he gained the backing of businesses based in Kent, Essex and Suffolk with the newly formed Eastern Region Windsurfers adding their valued support.
He also took time out to visit schools in Kent promoting his sport of windsurfing, which he started at the age of six.
The 2007 BBC South East awards are to be held on the 3rd December at the Priestfield Stadium in Gillingham and will be filmed and recorded for Broadcast on BBC news.