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Six outstanding athletes win University’s highest sporting honour

Simi Pam speaking at the 2023 REDS AwardsAll photos by FineTime Photography

REDS Awards attendees enjoying the sunshine in the gardens of Goldney Hall

This year’s REDS Awards winners (minus Robbie Jackson who was on tour). L-R Kincaid Ingram, Martin Nguyen, Phoebe Murray, Barra Mac Ruairi (Chief Property Officer at the University), Natalie Oldfield and Charlie Dighero

Press release issued: 15 June 2023

Exceptional sporting talent was given the limelight as six student athletes won the University of Bristol’s highest sporting honour.

Around 80 students, staff and alumni gathered in Goldney Hall for the annual REDS Awards, a gala dinner that honours athletes and teams competing at the top of their game.

This year, six students won University of Bristol REDS Awards, including a rugby centre making waves for Bristol Bears and England, and a powerlifter who recently took bronze at the world bench pressing championships.

An additional nine students were highly commended with Director’s Awards. And there was a worthy winner for the Inclusivity Award, which is given to a student or team helping others – particularly those from underrepresented groups – get involved in sport.

Finally, the Coach of the Year award was given to Netball Club Coordinator Chantelle Wopara.

All of the winners were nominated by coaches, sporting staff and club captains.

This year’s guest speaker was Simi Pam, a University of Bristol Medicine graduate who plays loosehead prop for Bristol Bears.

Matt Birch, Director of Sport, Exercise and Health at the University, said: “We are immensely lucky at Bristol to attract some truly remarkable athletes.

“The REDS Awards are all about showing our appreciation for the massive impact they have on our sporting community – as players, mentors and inspirations to the next generation.

“A huge well done to all the award winners: your contributions make a real difference.”

The following students received REDS Awards:


Phoebe Murray - Rugby

Before Phoebe Murray even enrolled as a Medicine student at Bristol, she had been capped for England’s under-18s rugby team. Unsurprisingly, she excelled in her first year with the University of Bristol's Women's Rugby Club (UBWRFC), helping the 1st team reach the cup semi-finals and shine in the highest University league. She captained the team in her second year and soon after captained England’s under-20s. A common fixture in Bristol Bears starting line-up, she still coaches at UBWRFC when her busy schedule allows.


Martin Nguyen – Power lifting

When people hear that Martin Nguyen can lift more than twice his bodyweight, they are impressed. When they hear he’s bench pressing that weight, they usually need a sit down. The International Business Management student has plenty of trophies to his name: this year, he won gold in the 66kg class in the British bench pressing championships and in May won bronze in the world champs in South Africa, lifting 150kg in the 66kg junior category.


Kincaid Ingram - Hockey

Kincaid Ingram has helped propel the men’s hockey 1st team to stratospheric success since he joined the University in 2017 as an undergraduate. Now doing a PhD in Dynamic Molecular Cell Biology, he was instrumental in the team’s promotion to the England Hockey National League Conference and then to England Hockey Division One, as well as to the BUCS Premier Division. Most recently, Kincaid captained the team to a second successive unbeaten season in BUCS, achieving promotion to the top tier for the second time.


Robbie Jackson - Hockey

Physics with Astrophysics MSci student Robbie Jackson has played among the biggest, yet perhaps most understated, roles in the success of the men’s hockey 1st team. Despite the sport’s intensity, he often plays the full 70 minutes in Wednesday’s BUCS league and again in Sunday’s National League. His defensive aptitude has become legendary, and he is known for fearlessly running down penalty corners despite the danger of flying balls. During the in 2021/22, which saw the team promoted to England Hockey Division One, the team conceded just 25 goals across 18 games – the next best team conceded 35.


Natalie Oldfield - Ultimate frisbee

Natalie Oldfield may only be 23, but she has just made Team GB’s Senior Women's team. And yet her road to the European Champions in Limerick, Ireland, this summer has been no less impressive. In 2021/2022 the Biological Sciences MSc student captained the women's team to their highest BUCS 1st Division performance in over a decade and took the women’s outdoor team to 4th at the Nationals. Her talent saw her compete with a local Bristol side in both the European Club Championships in Caorle, Italy, (taking a bronze) and the World Ultimate Club Championship in Cincinnati.


Charlie Dighero - Ultimate frisbee

Also into Team GB’s ultimate frisbee team is Chemistry MSci student, Charlie Dighero, who will be heading to the World Championships later this year in the under-24s squad. His string of achievements includes helping the top mixed team take 2nd and top men’s team take 6th in the 2022 outdoor nationals. His University side also beat some of the best teams in the country when they took gold at a tournament in London.


The winners of the Director’s Awards were:

  • Archie Sansome (Aerospace Engineering MEng) - Hockey
  • Maddy Padgett (Medicine MBChB and Health, Law and Society LLM) - Activator Programme
  • Kostas Anastasakis (Computer Science PhD) - Volleyball
  • George Webber (Civil Engineering MEng) - Tennis
  • Connie Rutter (Economics BSc) - Netball
  • Pat Gibbs (Economics BSc) - Football
  • Chad Mitchell-Turner (Liberal Arts BA) - Football
  • Yasmin Tajalli (Philosophy and Politics BSc) – Swimming and water polo
  • Henry Bedson (Management  (MSc) - Rugby

The winner of the Inclusivity Award was:

  • Madeleine Vale (English and Classical Studies) – Mixed martial arts

The winner of the Coach of the Year Award was:

  • Chantelle Wopara – Netball Club Coordinator 
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