No-show Kyle and Jackie O win top radio prize, again

FM shock jocks Kyle Sandilands and Jackie O have claimed the top award – for the sixth time – at the 2018 Australian Commercial Radio Awards on Saturday.

The pair won the best FM team title four times during at 2Day FM, and twice more since defecting to Kiis in 2014. Neither were in attendance; Fairfax Media understands Jackie O was looking after a sick child and Sandilands was unwell.

The Continuous Call Team* on 2GB (Ray Hadley, Bob Fulton, Darryl Brohman, Erin Molan, Mark Riddell, Chris Warren and Mark Levy) took home the equivalent AM award.

The event, at Melbourne’s Convention and Exhibition Centre, proved especially fruitful for Nova’s national drive show, hosted by Kate Ritchie, Tim Blackwell and Marty Sheargold. The trio were named best networked program and best syndicated program, and Ritchie also won best entertainment presenter.

If you feel you've read this before, you're not wrong. Nearly all of this year's major winners already have a swag of ACRAs, which are awarded by a panel of industry members and peers, which bases its choices on audio highlights packages sumbitted by each nominee. Indeed, Alan Jones has claimed so many gongs, he “retired” from the awards to give other presenters a chance.

Consider a typical weekday on 3AW. During any given 24-hour period, around a dozen people will host a shift – some solo, some in pairs. Familiarity is key; listeners want the same presenters at the same time each day, right across the year.

This is why the pool of potential award recipients is relatively small – especially compared to the television industry, which relies on variety. Even the most popular reality shows or dramas rarely run longer than a few months, and networks tend to vary their schedules across the week.

Ben Fordham, 2GB’s drive host, was crowned best talk presenter and awarded the Brian White award for radio journalism. 3AW’s morning host, Neil Mitchell, won best current affairs presenter, bringing his total number of ACRAs to 21.

Gold Logie winner Grant Denyer, a member of 2Day FM’s breakfast show, was named best newcomer and Smooth FM’s Melissa Doyle took the best music presenter prize.

Kyle Sandilands and Jackie O.

Kyle Sandilands and Jackie O.Credit:CRA

Industry legend Lee Simon – who has worked in radio for almost 50 years – was inducted into Hall of Fame. The “godfather of rock” was instrumental in launching Melbourne’s first commercial FM station, EON FM (now called Triple M) in 1980. In 1997, he brought AFL football to the station. Despite predictions it would flop on the FM frequency, the move was a success.

Kate Ritchie.

Kate Ritchie.Credit:CRA

Simon started his career at 3AW in 1971 and has also worked at 2BE, 3DB, 7HT, 2NX, 2SM and 3XY.

After a brief stint in management, he resumed his programming and on-air roles.

“I found myself heading off to work at 7.30 in the morning – bedecked in suit, collar and tie – and just about every day doing cash flow analysis charts [and] trying to secure competitive quotes for renovations to the building or a new photocopier,” he told The Age’s Green Guide in 1987.

Lee Simon in 1977.

Lee Simon in 1977.Credit:Fairfax Media

“I found myself sitting in my office, looking out the window as on-air staff would arrive, and really envying those guys.”

As a program director, Simon gave a break to then-unknown presenters including Eddie McGuire, Jennifer Keyte, Brigitte Duclos, Richard Stubbs, Brian Taylor and The D-Generation comedy group.

“[Simon is] one of those guys who could see the big picture, who knew what was great and what we should all be listening to,” musician Jimmy Barnes said on Saturday.

* Fairfax Media, owner of this masthead, has a majority stake in Macquarie Media, owner of 2GB, 3AW and other radio stations.

Full list of 2018 Australian Commercial Radio Awards (on-air)

Country>Provincial>Non-Metropolitan>Metropolitan>Syndication/Production Company

BEST ON-AIR TEAM – METRO FM
The Kyle & Jackie O Show; Kyle Sandilands & Jackie Henderson, KIIS 106.5, Sydney NSW, Australian Radio Network M

BEST ON-AIR TEAM – METRO AM
Ray Hadley's Continuous Call Team; Ray Hadley, Bob Fulton, Erin Molan, Darryl Brohman, Mark Riddell, Mark Levy & Chris Warren, 2GB, Sydney NSW, Macquarie Media Limited M

BEST ON-AIR TEAM COUNTRY & PROVINCIAL
Brekkie with Courtney & Lippi; Matt Lipiarski & Courtney McIntyre, Mixx FM, Hamilton VIC, ACE Radio Broadcasters C
Rabbit & Julie Goodwin; Dave Rabbetts & Julie Goodwin, Star 104.5, Gosford NSW, NOVA Entertainment P

BEST ENTERTAINMENT PRESENTER
Michael Moffett; Triple M, Coffs Harbour NSW, Southern Cross Austereo C
Tanya Hennessy; hit104.7, Canberra ACT, ARN/SCA P
Kate Ritchie; Nova Network, NOVA Entertainment M

BEST TALK PRESENTER
Sarah Boorer; 2BS Gold, Bathurst NSW, Bathurst Broadcasters C
Brian Carlton; LAFM, Launceston TAS, Grant Broadcasters P
Ben Fordham; 2GB, Sydney NSW, Macquarie Media Limited M

BEST CURRENT AFFAIRS PRESENTER
Katie Woolf; Mix 104.9, Darwin NT, Grant Broadcasters NM
Neil Mitchell; 3AW, Melbourne VIC, Macquarie Media Limited M

BEST SYNDICATED AUSTRALIAN PROGRAM
Kate, Tim & Marty; Kate Ritchie, Tim Blackwell, Marty Sheargold & The Nova Entertainment Syndication Team, NOVA Entertainment

BEST SPORTS PRESENTER
Martin Agatyn; 7AD, Devonport TAS, Grant Broadcasters C Tom King; K rock, Geelong VIC, Grant Broadcasters P Isa Guha; Triple M, Melbourne VIC, Southern Cross Austereo M

BEST NETWORKED PROGRAM
The Morning Rush; Jon Vertigan & Kate Meade, ACE Radio Broadcasters C
Australia by Night with Stephen Cenatiempo; Stephen Cenatiempo, Triple M regional network, Southern Cross Austereo P
Kate, Tim & Marty; Kate Ritchie, Tim Blackwell & Marty Sheargold, NOVA Entertainment M

BEST MUSIC PRESENTER
Bryce Ruthven; Edge FM, Deniliquin NSW, ACE Radio Broadcasters C Josh Olek; K rock, Geelong VIC, Grant Broadcasters P
Melissa Doyle; smoothfm, Sydney NSW, NOVA Entertainment M

BRIAN WHITE AWARD FOR RADIO JOURNALISM
Katie Woolf; Mix 104.9, Darwin NT, Grant Broadcasters NM
Ben Fordham; 2GB, Sydney NSW, Macquarie Media Limited M

BEST NEWCOMER ON-AIR
Paris Humphrey; OneFM, Tamworth NSW, Super Radio Network C
Christie Hayes; i98FM, Wollongong NSW, WIN Network P
Grant Denyer; 2Day FM, Sydney NSW, Southern Cross Austereo M

BEST SPORTS EVENT COVERAGE 2018
Grand Final Call; Ben Casanelia & Tom King, K rock, Geelong VIC, Grant Broadcasters NM
The 2017 AFL Grand Final; Triple M Football, Triple M, Melbourne VIC, Southern Cross Austereo M

BEST NEWS PRESENTER COUNTRY & PROVINCIAL
Lance White; 3CS & Mixx FM, Colac VIC, ACE Radio Broadcasters C
Caitlin Unger; Star 104.5, Gosford NSW, NOVA Entertainment P

BEST NEWS PRESENTER – METRO FM
Ron Wilson; smoothfm, Sydney NSW, NOVA Entertainment M

BEST NEWS PRESENTER – METRO AM
Erin Maher; 2GB, Sydney NSW, Macquarie Media Limited M

BEST DIGITAL RADIO FORMAT
Coles Radio; Coles Radio Team, NOVA Entertainment

BEST ORIGINAL PODCAST – UNBRANDED
Mum Says My Memoir Is A Lie; Rosie Waterland, PodcastOne, Southern Cross Austereo

BEST ORIGINAL PODCAST – BRANDED
Modern Babies; Genea & the Nova Entertainment Podcast Team, NOVA Entertainment

BEST RADIO SHOW PODCAST
Chrissie, Sam & Browny;Chrissie Swan, Sam Pang & Jonathan Brown, NOVA Entertainment

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