The British biathlon community’s heads hang low today with the passing of Scott ‘Scotty’ Banes.
Scotty aka ‘Lone wolf’ was the epitome of positive thinking, never was any glass half empty when it came to Scotty’s outlook on life. A very young Scotty became involved with biathlon in the mid 90’s and was immediately besotted. As a Junior he was part of Bob Anderson’s cohort of promising athletes training up at Glenmore Lodge and went on to become an important cog in the British Biathlon European Cup team, with one of his standout results being a 37th place shooting 0-0 at Forni Avoltri in Italy.
After selflessly raking his rifle for the last time, he turned his attention to coaching and dedicated himself to development of future biathletes for GBR as the (literal) driving force behind the British Biathlon Academy from 2005 through to 2011. Gordon Seaton, who managed the Academy, recalls that “I did the boring ‘talking’ to put things in place, but it was Scotty that did the ‘walking’ to absolutely make it all happen”.
Through his time coaching at Kinloss, Scotty helped hone the skills of countless athletes, many of whom went on to race for GBR internationally and all the way through to Olympic representation. Amanda Lightfoot, who was personally supported by Scotty after he left the Academy & the Army recalls that “he was always on hand to help, it did not matter what was asked of him or what time of the day it was. You could 100% rely on him. A great guy with massive dedication to the sport.” There is no doubt in any of those athlete’s minds, that Scotty was a key element to them becoming a better biathlete.
Scotty never lost contact with British biathlon. In fact, it was only a little over 3 months ago that he was helping out the current BBU Development Squad by spending a morning with the athletes on the Findhorn range, he just couldn’t let it go, he was biathlon through and through.
Our condolences go out to his family and son, during his short but action packed 43 years on this planet he positively touched countless lives and will be fondly remembered by those who met him. Those who knew Scotty, know he loved a glass of wine, so it is a certainty that there will be many, many glasses of red wine held aloft in memory of Scotty Banes.