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Celebrating Excellence

by | Aug 10, 2023 | Performance Sport, Sport News | 0 comments

Para-Swimmer Grace Harvey Makes Waves at World Championships: A Triumph of Determination and Talent 

Grace Harvey, an inspiring student swimmer from The University of Manchester, has left her mark on the Para World Championships. Competing on the Manchester stage, Grace showcased her incredible talent by securing a silver medal in the SB5 100m Breaststroke final and 4th position in the 200m Individual Medley (SM6). Proudly representing the British Para-Swimming team, Grace, who is studying for her Master’s in public health (Dental Public Health), demonstrated exceptional prowess in the competition. 

Despite facing the challenges posed by cerebral palsy, Grace’s unwavering determination has shone through. Her swimming journey began at the age of 4, leading her to achieve remarkable milestones, including clinching the world gold in 100m Breaststroke (SB5) in 2022, as well as earning silver medals in the Paralympic (Tokyo 2020) and Commonwealth (Birmingham 2022) games. 

Hailing from Ware in Hertfordshire, Grace has not only shattered 11 British records but has also proudly represented the University in the British Universities and Colleges Sport Championships (BUCS). Inspired by the 2004 and 2008 Paralympic Games, Grace embarked on her swimming journey at the age of nine by joining a local club. 

Grace’s relentless training regimen includes eight pool sessions, totalling around 16 hours, along with three gym sessions and two indoor rowing sessions. Her remarkable dedication to both her studies and training is an incredible achievement. Grace acknowledges the pivotal role played by the UoM Sport Scholarship Team, which enabled her to balance her master’s studies alongside rigorous training.

The University of Manchester and its community stand firmly behind Grace, extending their best wishes for her continued success in the world of para-swimming as she prepares for next year’s Paris Paralympics. 

“Grace’s dedication and exceptional achievements stand as a testament to the power of determination and the steadfast support of the Sport Scholarship Programme at The University of Manchester. Her journey inspires others to reach for new heights, both in academia and sport.”

Jonathan Kantor, Performance Sport Officer at UoM Sport

Left to right, Grace Harvey, Verena Schott and Anna Hontar. Day 5 of the Allianz World Para Swimming Championships on the 4th of August 2023 at Manchester Aquatics Centre in Manchester, England. Photo Credit: Sam Mellish / WPS

Rising from TASS to Triumph: Archie Atkinson’s Inspiring Journey to the UCI World Cycling Championships and Beyond

Archie Atkinson stands as a shining example of British Cycling’s commitment to nurturing exceptional talent through the Talented Athlete Scholarship Scheme (TASS). Supported by the dedicated Performance Sport Team at The University of Manchester, Archie’s journey has been one marked by unwavering dedication and comprehensive sport science support, including Strength and Conditioning and Physiotherapy. TASS, a Sport England-funded collaboration between delivery sites and national governing bodies of sport, has had a home at The University of Manchester since the inception of the scheme in 2004.

During the UCI World Cycling Championships held in Glasgow from 3-13 August 2023, newcomer Archie made an impressive debut. Securing 7th place in the 1km time trial and 6th in the Flying 200, Archie’s defining moment came in the C4 scratch race where he skillfully gained a lap advantage before a mid-race crash briefly halted proceedings. Undeterred, Archie made a powerful move with two laps to go, clinching victory and the coveted rainbow jersey in his first international championship—an outstanding achievement that etched his name into the event’s history.

Archie is poised to transition to the World Class Programme at British Cycling this upcoming autumn, as he targets Paris 2024 and his inaugural Paralympic Games. The University of Manchester is proud to support TASS athletes such as Archie as they seek to progress in their chosen sport and become full-time athletes.

‘’Since joining us at The University of Manchester through TASS, Archie has shown incredible dedication and maturity at such a young age. He has been consistent in all aspects of his training and has been a pleasure for the team here to work with. Archie is a great example of what is possible for other aspiring para-athletes who dream of competing on the world stage. We are delighted for him and look forward to cheering him on as he progresses on to British Cycling’s World Class Programme.’’

Nathan Norris, Lead Strength and Conditioning Coach at UoM Sport

Archie Atkinson celebrating after his victory. Para Track Cycling – 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships – Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome, Glasgow, Scotland – Men’s C4 Scratch Race. Photography credit: Will Palmer/SWpix