University of Birmingham Sport (UBSport) are delighted to introduce the inaugural ‘Lionheart Award’.

Presented termly, the award has been created to recognise students-athletes who are not only performing at a significant level for their chosen sport, but also show dedication and leadership surpassing what is expected of UBSport club members.

Therefore, UBSport are thrilled to announce the first recipient of the ‘Lionheart Award’ will be presented to Xavier Disley from the University’s cycling club.

Xavier is a shining example of going above and beyond due responsibilities for his club and the university, and for this will receive an honorary UBSport scholarship for the duration of a term.

He will be able to enjoy most of the privileges usually exclusive to our scholars, including access to physiological testing, strength and conditioning programming, nutrition and psychological support, physiotherapy support and lifestyle mentoring.

Xavier was chosen as his efforts within the cycling club, since joining the University in 2009 to read a PHD in Optimisation of Force Application, have been outstanding.

The 25-year old has provided a number of coaching and performance seminars to the club, enabling him to share his discoveries and the technical knowledge accumulated from his studies and motivate other club members through his passion for the sport – with the ultimate goal being to increase the cycling club’s performance in the British University and College of Sport (BUCS) rankings.

His influence in the club is apparent already as the performances so far this year, in both the BUCS Hill Climb and track Championship, have been exceptional, with Birmingham topping the cycling rankings with six events left in which to compete.

UBSport Scholarship Manager Luke Gunn said, ‘This new award has been set-up to bridge the gap between the scholarships programme and the sports clubs, as we are keen to recognise and notice those club members that devote so much time, effort and passion into improving the results for the University.’

He continued, ‘There are many unsung heroes throughout the university clubs, just like Xavier, that maintain the university’s position in sport. We invite all of these to apply for this award each term for a chance to enjoy the majority of the privileges usually only accessible to our sports scholars.’
The next Lionheart Award winner will be chosen in January 2011, if you wish to apply or to find out more information please contact Luke Gunn on l.s.gunn@bham.ac.uk.

The successful candidate will then be notified of their prize at the start of next term for the Spring term.