British Paralympic Association and Hogan Lovells UK

Nicholas Cheffings Para Athlete Bursary 2021

Our Nicholas Cheffings Para athlete bursary is supporting ten para athletes as they prepare for the rescheduled Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games this year.

Our Nicholas Cheffings Para athlete bursary is supporting ten para athletes as they prepare for the rescheduled Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games this year.

These Paralympians and aspiring Paralympians who hope to represent ParalympicsGB in Tokyo are receiving one-off bursaries to help with their career development. We are delighted to be supporting them on their sporting journeys.

Each of our ten recipients have an amazing story to share. Find out more about them, their career and their sporting triumphs here:

Name:  Gaz Choudhry

Sport: Wheelchair basketball

Length of career: 13 years

Top 3 accolades:

*Tokyo 2020 - Bronze

1) World Championship Gold 2018

2) Paralympic Bronze 2016

3) 4xEuroean Champion 11,13,15,19

How you got into your sport: I went along to a Wheelchair Basketball Road Show and subsequently joined by local club currently known as London Titans.

Your proudest moment in sport: Being Selected to represent GB for the London 2012 Games

Favourite / iconic moment in sporting History: Manchester United winning the treble or LA Lakers beating the Celtics in Game 7 of the NBA finals in 2010.

Your most inspiring sporting hero / figure: Kobe Bryant

Where do we follow your progress: @GazGB4

Name:  Kim Daybell

Sport: Para Table Tennis

Length of career: 13 Years

How you got into your sport: Kim Daybell started playing table tennis at the age of nine at home in the garage with his dad and was immediately attracted by the speed and excitement of the sport

Where do we follow your progress: Twitter: @KimDaybell

Name:  Charlotte Henshaw

Sport: Para Canoe

Length of career: 4 years on the GB Para Canoe team. (Previously a member of the British Para Swimming team for 9 years - Paralympic Silver & Bronze medallist in Para Swimming in 2012 & 2016 respectively)

Top 3 accolades:

*Tokyo 2020 - Gold

1) Double World Champion in Para Canoe KL2 K1 & VL3 V1 200m in 2019.

2) Hold world leading times in 2 Para Canoe disciplines.

3) Medalist in every international race I’ve been part of since joining the Para Canoe team in 2017.

How you got into your sport: After the Rio Paralympic Games, I was keen for a new challenge in a new sport, and I was invited along to have a trial with the Paracanoe team in the December of 2016. I fell in love with the sport straight away and knew that it was a challenge I was keen to continue with. I began training full time with the GB team 3 months after I first sat in a kayak and 6 months later was competing at my first international regatta - ECA European Championships - where I brought home a silver medal.

Your proudest moment in sport: Winning double world championship titles at the 2019 ICF Paracanoe World Championships. I had set myself some really difficult targets going into that meet, and so to win both titles in world leading times was a culmination of a year of learning and work.

Favourite / iconic moment in sporting History: I’m a big Manchester United fan so I always find myself going back to the 1999 Champions League final and the 2 goals in injury time to win the cup and complete the treble. It is a masterclass in tenacity and never giving up until the very last second.

Your most inspiring sporting hero / figure: Serena Williams is a massive inspiration to me. She has maintained a career at the highest level for such a long time while also pursuing projects which she’s passionate about outside of her sport.

Where do we follow your progress: Twitter: @CHenshawGB

Name:  Jack Hunter-Spivey

Sport: Para Table Tennis

Length of career: 12 Years Pro

Top 3 accolades:

*Tokyo 2020 - Bronze

1) Competing at the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games

2) 6x British champion and haven’t lost a match in Britain for 6 years.

3) US open champion.

How you got into your sport: I started playing table tennis in a youth club when I was 10 and fell in love with the sport ever since!

Your proudest moment in sport: My proudest moment would have to be becoming a Paralympian and competing in the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games it was always my dream to become a Paralympian and it was so surreal achieving it! Now I’m doing everything I can to bring home a Paralympic medal for GB in Tokyo next year.

Favourite / iconic moment in sporting History: As a massive Liverpool FC fan my favourite sporting moment has to be winning the champions league in 2005 I remember watching it on tv so clearly and being so gutted at half time being 3-0 down so when we came back and won it it’s one of my best memories!

Your most inspiring sporting hero / figure: My sporting hero is Dan Hardy, Dan fought in the UFC and I absolutely loved watching him and his approach to competing and being an athlete, I even had the Mohawk like him in Rio 2016.

Where do we follow your progress: Twitter: @jackhstt

Name:  Tully Kearney

Sport:  Para Swimming

Length of career: 10 years (first international selection – German International, Berlin, 2011)

Top 3 accolades: 

*Tokyo 2020 - Gold & Silver

1) 3 x World Champion 2019 World Championships, London

2) 2019 Pride of Sport Award Winner (in recognition of my triumph over adversity to become triple World Champion)

https://www.prideofsportawards.co.uk/component/k2/tully-kearney

3) 4 x World Champion 2015 IPC World Championships, Glasgow

How you got into your sport: My mum was a national level swimmer and my brother joined a swimming club at a young age. I used to watch him train and one day his coach asked me if I’d like to join in instead of watching and it all started from there. I immediately loved the water and it was a place where I could feel on a level playing field with my peers, as I was unable to participate in most dryland sports due to my disability.

Your proudest moment in sport: In 2015 I became 4 x World Champion at the IPC World Championships in Glasgow, also winning a silver and a bronze too, and was GB’s highest medal earner at the championships.

Favourite/iconic moment in sporting History: The first sports competition for World War II veterans organised in 1948 by Sir Ludwig Guttmann which culminated inspired the first Paralympic Games in Rome in 1960. Without his pioneering work disabled athletes would not have the opportunities in sport that we have today.

Your most inspiring sporting hero/figure: I am a huge fan of motor sport am really inspired by Billy Monger who has overcome so much adversity. He has been a trailblazer for changing attitudes around the inclusion of disabled athletes in motor sport and, having met him, he remains a such a lovely person despite all his success!

Where do we follow your progress: Twitter: @TullyKearney

Name: Maria Lyle

Sport: Para Athletics

Length of career: 12 Years

Top 3 accolades:

*Tokyo 2020 - 2 Bronze

1) Becoming double world champion

2) Coming out publicly about my mental health struggles

3) Breaking my first world record aged 14

How you got into your sport: My mum was my PE teacher and got my class to do the bleep test/multistage fitness test as a lesson. I managed to exceed everyone’s expectations and stay in the longest out of everyone. That helped me discover my love for running and I haven’t looked back since.

Your proudest moment in sport: Becoming double world champion

Favourite / iconic moment in sporting History: The Chicago Bulls 6x NBA championship winners

Your most inspiring sporting hero / figure: I don’t have one person, if I hear a story of someone overcoming struggles to achieve (no matter what the scale of the achievement is) that inspires me.

Where do we follow your progress: Twitter: @Lyle_maria

Name: Stephen Miller MBE

Sport: Athletics, Club Throw

Length of career: 25 Years

Top 3 accolades:

1) Winning the Silver medal in the Beijing 2008 Paralympics on my last throw, jumping from 4th to 2nd.

2) Winning my third Gold medal in a row at the Athens 2004 Paralympics, breaking the World Record in the process.

3) Being selected to be male athletics team captain at the London 2012 Paralympics.

How you got into your sport: I got into sport by going to an after-school sports club once a week from the age of 9. I loved trying different sports, competing, and trying to get better. I started competing in regional and national junior athletics events, and I discovered I had a talent for throwing, and most importantly I really enjoyed it. I had a great coach and mentor from a young age who was a Paralympian, he taught me the importance of enjoying sport no matter what happens.

Your proudest moment in sport: Winning the bronze medal in Rio 2016 was very special to me because it was the first major global medal I'd won since having a total hip replacement in 2012, just after the London 2012 Paralympics. I had battled a painful hip injury to get to London 2012, and was close to retirement, but I decided to keep going after successful surgery and worked very hard to get back to the top level of my sport.

Favourite / iconic moment in sporting History: When I was 12 years old I remember watching the Barcelona Olympics, it was the first time in my life I was fully aware of the Olympics and I loved watching it on TV. The moment that really inspired me the most was when Linford Christie won the 100 meters and beat Carl Lewis. Incredible performance against the odds and I could feel the tension as I watched. I knew then that I wanted to be a sportsman.

Your most inspiring sporting hero / figure: Roger Federer. His attitude towards sport and life seems spot on, he's stayed humble despite all his success and the way he's managed to adapt to stay competitive as he's gotten older is something I admire - especially as we're around the same age.

Where do we follow your progress: Twitter: @hailfabio

Name: George Peasgood

Sport: Para Triathlon & Para Cycling

Length of career: 9 years (joined the paratri squad in 2012)

Top 3 accolades:

*Tokyo 2020 - Silver & Bronze

1) 2018 3rd place - Gold Coast, Australia - Triathlon World Championships (PTS5)

2) 2019 2nd place - C4 Individual Pursuit - UCI Track Cycling World Championships

3) 2018 1st place - Iseo, Italy - World Paratriathlon Series (PTS5)

How you got into your sport: My family had been involved in the world of triathlon since 2007, so it was easy for me to follow their footsteps, there just wasn’t a junior club at the time. Then after a major leg operation in 2009-10 the local Triathlon club set up a junior section, so it was almost natural for me to join.

Your proudest moment in sport: I have so many in sport which all mean a lot to me for different reasons. One in racing that stands out a lot was finishing 3rd at the 2018 World Championships, it was a long fight to be back racing at that level and it felt like this was just a stepping stone of what’s possible.

Favourite / iconic moment in sporting History: Roger Banister breaking the 4minute mile, proving even on a day with non-ideal conditions, anything is possible and any day can be a day to make history.

Your most inspiring sporting hero / figure: I don't really have one. My journey in sport is very unique and I haven’t had to rely on the external motivation of a singular person for what I want to achieve. That being said, any professional athlete has the determination and drive that I find admirable as a fellow sports person.

Where do we follow your progress: Twitter: @george_peasgood

Name: Chris Skelley

Sport: Judo

Length of career: 7 years

Top 3 accolades:

*Tokyo 2020 - Gold

Last year I achieved my highest ever world ranking of number one and have stayed there ever since. To date I have won multi World and European medals and I now have my sights set on winning Gold in this years Tokyo Paralympic Games. I competed in Rio 2016, which was my first Paralympics and finished 5th, but this result is what pushes me to become a better athlete as I don’t want to compete in another Paralympics without coming home with a medal.

Your proudest moment in sport: Winning Gold at the European Championships on home soil in 2017.

Favourite / iconic moment in sporting History: When Jonny Wilkinson dropped the goal to win the World Cup in 2003.

Your most inspiring sporting hero / figure: The person I have always looked up to in sport is Johnny Wilkinson, as I really admire his determination and commitment to his sporting career.

Where do we follow your progress: Twitter: @ChristopherSke2

Name:  Jess Stretton

Sport: Para Archery

Length of career: 6 years (Since 2015)

Top 3 accolades:

1) Rio 2016 Individual Gold Medal

2) Beijing 2017 World Championships both Individual and mixed team Gold Medals

3) Holland 2019 World Championships individual Silver Medal

How you got into your sport: I was a part of a sports-have-a-go camp with a charity called Wheelpower where there were loads of different sports to try, archery being one of them. I fell in love at the first arrow and was lucky when a talent scout was there at my second camp to pick me up and start me on my journey.

Your proudest moment in sport: Competing in Rio against my teammates, Vicky Jenkins and Jo Frith, and we were all shooting really well, and we all managed to get onto the podium, so it was a completely GB podium for the first time in twenty years.

Favourite / iconic moment in sporting History: When I went to see the London 2012 Paralympic Games with my school and just being there, watching the athletes and feeling the atmosphere made me realise how much I wanted to be one of those athletes one day, and be competing for my country at a Games.

Your most inspiring sporting hero / figure: I don’t really have just one person I look up to, but if I had to pick one, it would have to be John Cavanagh. He was a team mate of mine, who has sadly retired now, but he had been shooting for a long time and went to many Paralympics games, always managing to come across as calm and collected all the time.

Where do we follow your progress: Twitter: @Archeryjess

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