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Nominations now open for the IOG 'Ahead of the Game' Industry Awards

June 19, 2012

Entries are now being accepted for this year's Institute of Groundsmanship (IOG) 2012 Industry Awards that recognise the skill of groundsmanship across all main professional sports, as well as education, volunteer and grassroots sports at many different venues.

Nominations can easily be made online ( ) for the Awards - the only industry-wide annual awards that acknowledge the important contribution made by groundscare staff to the high standards achieved and the sustainability of British sport and best-practice groundscare.

The results will be announced Oscar-style at York Racecourse on Thursday December 6, following the IOG's 2012 Sports Turf Conference.

Including categories that embrace Education, Grassroots, Multi-sports and Professional, this year's Awards also salute the Groundsmen of the Year in all the main professional sports of football, cricket, rugby union and rugby league, as well as horse racing and tennis, as IOG Chief Executive Geoff Webb comments:

"Following three successful years of sell-out Award presentation evenings, this year's event has been further enhanced to acknowledge the expertise of groundsmanship in a broad cross-section of sports.

"The IOG represents a diverse range of groundscare skills and our Awards programme now reflects the various sectors that fully deserve recognition for the excellent high standards found in facilities today at both amateur and professional level."

He continues: "There are many excellent examples of high-quality groundsmanship across all sectors, so if you think you know someone or somewhere that deserves recognition, now is the time to nominate them now using our improved, easy access online site

"Coupled with the ongoing and extensive coverage of the Awards - and the Award winners themselves - on Sky Sports News and talkSPORT radio, in addition to the extensive publicity attracted each year throughout the turf and sports press as well as in local/regional media, we are confident that this year's event will again be a fantastic evening."

The categories of entry to the IOG 'Ahead of the Game' 2012 Industry Awards are:

Education Awards

Most Promising Sportsturf Student of the Year

Young Groundsman of the Year.

Grass Roots Awards

Volunteer Sports Groundsman of the Year

Grass Roots Sports Ground of the Year.

Multi-sport Awards

Best Maintained Artificial Pitch of the Year

School, College, University Sports Club Grounds Team of the Year

School, College, University, Sports Club Groundsman of the Year.

Professional Awards

Professional Spectator Sports Ground of the Year

Professional Sports Ground Team of the Year

Professional Football Groundsman of the Year

Professional Cricket Groundsman of the Year

Professional Rugby Union Groundsman of the Year

Professional Rugby League Groundsman of the Year

Professional Horse Racing Groundsman of the Year

Professional Tennis Groundsman of the Year.

Additional Award categories

Environmental Project/Innovation of the Year Award.

Lifetime Achievement Award.

The Alex R Millar IOG Groundsman of the Year Award. The winners of all the individual awards will be shortlisted for this Award, as Geoff Webb adds:

"As past chairman of the IOG, Alex was a passionate advocate for the industry and always wanted the very best for the profession and our members. It is fitting, therefore, that this change to our key award recognises both individually relevant to sector and collectively the breadth of talent we have across the industry today."

With industry-recognised judges, each category will be judged on criteria which will include available resources, budget control, maintenance and use of machinery, presentation and housekeeping standards, technical knowledge, scale of operations and frequency of use, health & safety management, record keeping, environmental issues, community involvement and training & education.

Visit to make your easy-to-enter entries/nominations.

Call for papers: the IOG is calling for presentations for this year's Sports Turf Conference, being held at York Racecourse on Thursday December 6, preceding the Awards evening. If you have something to say, or a burning issue that you'd like covered, please contact Geoff Webb ( ) with your suggestions and contact details.

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