Hunt is on to discover your hero of sporting Yorkshire

Is Joe Root your Yorkshire Post Sports Hero of 2013?

Is Joe Root your Yorkshire Post Sports Hero of 2013?

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Get the best bib and tucker dry-cleaned, the jewellery polished and the shoes shined – awards season is upon us.

Leeds hosts the BBC Sports Personality of the Year awards on December 15, but away from the national stage, the hunt is on for the best of the White Rose with our search for the Yorkshire Post Sports Hero of 2013.

Now in its third year, the award recognises the best of sporting talent currently active in the Broad Acres.

Last year was one long glorious sporting pageant throughout the country with the men and women of the White Rose playing their own significant roles.

But if you thought 2012 was good, how spectacular have the achievements been by this county’s heroes over the past 12 months?

To help you make up your mind, our team of sports writers have come up with a list of 50 names and what they have achieved in 2013 for your consideration.

And what makes that list so strong is the fact that the two people to have won this award in the past – Kevin Sinfield in 2011 and Jessica Ennis last year – are not even on it.

All you have to do is tell us who you believe has been your Yorkshire sports hero of the year?

Which of the 50 on the right, or any others that you think are deserving of the accolade, have had a year to remember?

One lucky Yorkshire Post will win two hospitality tickets to the third day of the Test match at Headingley between England and tourists Sri Lanka on Sunday, June 22.

All you need to do is cast your nomination and hope that your selected sports star wins our poll.

If you vote for our eventual winner then your name will be entered into the prize draw.

The Yorkshire Post sports hero will be the one who receives the most nominations from you, our readers. Each nomination counts as a vote.

The criterion is Yorkshire-born sportsmen and women, or people who play for Yorkshire clubs or live and train in the county, who have done wonders this year.

The closing date is Monday, December 16, at noon and our Yorkshire Post Sports Hero of 2013 will be revealed following a week-long countdown of the top five on Saturday, December 21.

To help you along with the selection process, here are a few names to consider, starting with what seems like a multitude of Yorkshire world champions across the whole spectrum of sport.

There were four from Yorkshire who consolidated their status as the best in the business.

Huddersfield cyclist Ed Clancy won world and European titles in track’s team pursuit while Hebden oarsman Andrew Triggs Hodge translated his prowess in the men’s four into the bigger boat as he won another global gold in the men’s eight, alongside City of York rower Tom Ransley.

Sheffield’s Nick Matthew is the undisputed king of the squash court after winning the world title for a third time, while Halifax’s Hannah Cockroft – who has made the shortlist for the BBC award – retained both her world titles as she showed no signs of slowing down in her dominance of wheelchair sprinting.

New to the top step of the planet’s podium in 2013 was Huddersfield motorcycling star Tom Sykes, who claimed victory in the World Superbike Championship, and Sheffield skeleton slider Shelley Rudman, who won her crown in February in St Moritz and will be going for Olympic gold in Sochi in February.

Doncaster’s Jamie McDonnell won the bantamweight world title on a famous night at the Keepmoat Stadium as Sheffield’s Kell Brook won again in the welterweight division to move a step closer to the belt he desperately craves.

Arguably the biggest achievement of the year came at Brookline Golf and Country Club in late summer when Sheffield teenager Matt Fitzpatrick – who had already won the silver medal for leading amateur at the Open – defied more than a century of English disappointment to claim the US Amateur title.

Does he get your vote, or are the repeated successes of the Brownlee brothers, Alistair and Jonny, who were serial winners of triathlon’s World Series events across the globe, deserving of your vote?

Elsewhere, the Yorkshire flag was flown proudly by Hull sprinter Annabelle Lewis for the bronze she won in the sprint relay at the world championships; by Beverley swimmer Lizzie Simmonds and her young 
team-mate Sophie Taylor of Leeds, and by that city’s diving squad, which goes from strength to strength.

Closer to home, Otley’s Lizzie Armitstead won the national road race title while the story of racing’s Grand National was made in Yorkshire; Ryan Mania winning on 66-1 shot Auroras Encore, who was trained by Sue and Harvey Smith at their yard in Bingley.

In team sports, the great and good of Yorkshire have risen to the occasion once again in 2013.

Three Yorkshireman played their part in England’s summer Ashes success.

Joe Root hit a maiden Test century and then went on to hold his own against the Aussies at the top of England’s order, while Tim Bresnan and Jonny Bairstow also chipped in with vital contributions.

In rugby union, adopted Leeds man Stuart Lancaster oversaw eight wins from 10 as England’s rugby union team climbed to third in the world, at one stage he even handed the captain’s armband to Pocklington front-rower Rob Webber.

England’s rugby league stars came up short in the World Cup, but has any individual team member had as good a year as Danny Brough, Super League’s Man of Steel after his terrific year with Huddersfield Giants and Scotland?

The man who gave Brough that conviction in 2013 was Paul Anderson, who in his first season as head coach steered the Giants to the top of Super League for the first time since 1932.

Sam Burgess put in another towering season for South Sydney. The Dewsbury-born forward followed that up with a stunning World Cup in England colours, his incredible performance in the semi-final against New Zealand rated by ex-Great Britain captain Jamie Peacock as the best by any English player for 20 years.

And what about from the world of football? The bosses are hard to look beyond, with four promotions by Yorkshire clubs and three men who stood out in orchestrating those ascensions; Steve Bruce for taking Hull City back to the Premier League, Steve Evans for taking Rotherham up and Phil Parkinson for doing likewise at Bradford City.

Who could forget that Parkinson also took the lowly Bantams to the League Cup final at Wembley?

These are just a few of the snapshots of success from 2013.

It’s now over to you to make your choice.

Good luck.

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