Sport by Dr Denise Amos

Other sports

The 2012 London Olympics produced a number of elite sportsmen and women who came from Nottinghamshire or have had connections with the county. The swimmers have already been mentioned. Stott, and Tim Baillie, from Nottingham, claimed Britain's first ever Olympic gold in the C2 category of the canoe slalom at Lee Valley. Sam Oldham from Keyworth won bronze in Gymnastics.

The county has other sporting personalities. For example, the golfer Lee Westwood, who grew up in Worksop. In late 2010 Westwood became the World number one golfer, ending the reign of Tiger Woods and becoming the first British golfer since Nick Faldo in 1994 to hold that position. He held the number one position for a total of 22 weeks. John Reynolds and Chris Walker, both from Nottingham have been active in motor cycle racing. Anthony Hamilton played snooker and reached the World Championship quarter-finals in 2000 and 2002. Reg Harris was voted Sportsman of the year in 1951. At the London Olympics 1948 John ‘Jack’ Archer won silver in the 4 x 100 meter relay for Great Britain. He later went on to win another silver at the 1950 Auckland Commonwealth Games in the 4 x 100 yard relay. He was born in 1921 and died in 1997.  Major Arthur Laurence Rook, ‘The Galloping Major’ (born in Bingham in 1921 and awarded the Military Cross for bravery during the Second World War) won a gold medal at the 1956 Olympics for his exceptional skills as a horseman.

Two of the largest companies in Nottingham were associated with sporting success, Raleigh and Players. Raleigh produced cycles which were used both in the Olympics and also in the Tour de France cycling events.  Players have sponsored F.1 motor racing and in 2011 Team Lotus returned to F.1 racing using the John Player Special brand.

The University of Nottingham has had a number of students who have been successful in Olympic competition. These include Deng Ya Ping, who qualified with a Masters degree in Contemporary Chinese Studies in 2000, and is one of table tennis’s greatest ever players. She has won four Olympic gold medals, as well as six world championships and the title of China’s female athlete of the 20th century.

Dr Tim Brabants (Medicine, 2002) secured bronze at Sydney 2000 for flat water canoeing, and picked up one gold and one bronze at Beijing, 2008.

Gareth Marriott won Britain’s first ever Olympic canoeing medal with a silver at Barcelona in 1992, and David Florence (Mathematical Physics 2005) and Campbell Walsh (Mathematical Physics 1999) have also won canoeing medals: Walsh silver in the K1 event at Athens 2004, and Florence silver in the C1 category in Beijing, and a silver in the C-2 event (with David Hounslow) at London 2012.

Robert Clift (Economics 1984) was part of the gold-winning GB Men’s hockey squad at Seoul 1988.

Many other students, and former students have participated in Olympic events, while other graduates have excelled in their own sports, notably perhaps Brian Moore (Law 1984), who won 64 caps for England at rugby 1987-95.

The University has given honorary degrees to a number of successful local sportsmen and women, among them Derek Randall (cricket), Brian Clough (football), Brian Moore (rugby), and Rebecca Adlington (swimming).

It has not been possible to cover every sport in Nottinghamshire in this entry but those covered show diversity and give an insight into their history and cover matters which would not normally be known to the general public. The data section gives comprehensive details of where it is possible to find information on the subject of sport. The Victoria County History is also a rich source of pre-First World War material.