The annual Rhinos Challenge events took place over two weekends at Butlins Skegness this month. They were both huge successes with 280 Rugby League and 103 Netball teams competing and over 1,250 matches taking place.
More than 4,000 players from Under-7 and Under-15s took part and the event was supported by 50 young Rugby League referees and 40 Netball umpires.
The weekends are run in partnership with ESF Events and this year for the first time rugby and netball tournaments both took place during the second weekend. The young players also got chance to meet some of their Rhinos heroes with players from the men’s, women’s, wheelchair and netball teams all attending.
There were also some other well-known faces from the sporting world that attended, including PDC World Darts Champion, Michael Smith, who was there supporting his son who plays for Pilkington Recs ARLFC. Leeds Rhinos legends, Danny McGuire and Ryan Hall were also there to enjoy the weekend and support from the sideline.
At the end of each weekend teams came together for a presentation show to celebrate the achievements of all the players. Each team was invited onto the main stage to receive their Rhinos Challenge medal from the Rhinos players. Awards included Fair Play, Magic Moment and Player of Steel.
Gareth Cook, head of community said: “We had over 12,000 attending over two weekends and it was great to see the rugby league community from all over the country coming together for two special weekends. It’s not just about clubs from Yorkshire the event attracts team from all over the country and areas represented included Lancashire, Merseyside, Cheshire and Cumbria.
“It was wonderful to also be supported by players from the club. We were joined by Blake Austin, Zane Teteveno, Leon Ruan and Mikolaj Oledzki along with Caitlin Beevers from Leeds Rhinos Women, Tom Halliwell and Nathan Collins from the Wheelchair team and the whole Rhinos Netball team.
“Next year is our tenth year of partnership with ESF and over the last decade the event has grown to be one of the highlights of the year for competing teams. We would like to thank everyone who supported Rhinos Challenge to make it a success, from the staff at ESF and Butlins, the players, parents and our own staff who do a brilliant job.”
To register interest for next year’s event email firstname.lastname@example.org