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‘Kristian Gover Memorial Award’ - Snowsports Bursary

Kriatian Gover Action Photo

Former Cardiff University student, Flight Lieutenant Kristian Gover, is continually commemorated as a result of the establishment of a Sport & Exercise Snowsports Bursary in 2006.

The ‘Kristian Gover Memorial Award’ is awarded on an annual basis to the most deserving snowsport athlete currently studying at Cardiff University.

Kristian studied Modern History and Politics at Cardiff University and graduated from the School of European Studies in 1996. He then joined the RAF, having been a member of the University Air Squadron, and served as a Puma helicopter pilot with 33 Squadron based at RAF Benson in Oxfordshire. He was tragically killed in a helicopter accident at Basra International airport in Iraq on the morning of 19th July 2004.


A full and active life


Kristian led a full and active life during his time at Cardiff University. A member of the University skiing team and later, the RAF ski team, Kristian became a specialist in downhill skiing, in particular Giant Slalom and Super G, and was also a very good off-piste skier. He regularly went snowboarding and mono-skiing, as well as developing a strong interest in telemark. Alongside this, Kristian was also a keen runner, squash player and rugby player.


The ‘Kristian Gover Memorial Award’


Kristian’s family have chosen to remember him through establishing a Sport & Exercise Sports Bursary, given his love of Cardiff University and in particular his passion for skiing. In this way, the ‘Kristian Gover Memorial Award’ will support future Cardiff University students with a similar talent for and love of skiing.


Recipients of the Award


Recipients of the award receive a financial reward and are also entitled to a comprehensive support programme. This falls in line with the main Sport High Performance Programme, please click here for further details.

Jemima Barnes, a psychology student, was the first recipient of the award in the academic year of 2006-07, as a Great Britain Junior Skier and the reigning British University Sports Association Champion.

In 2007-08 two students were joint recipients of the award. First was Jessica Thom, a final year psychology student, who specialises in freestyle skiing. Jess was the the British Universities Big Air and Halfpipe freestyle champion and upon graduating she travelled to New Zealand for the summer in the hope of becoming Britain’s number one female freestyle skier in the near future.

Geology student Rowan Vernon also received the award in 07-08 as well as her remaining undergraduate years (08-09- and 09-10). Rowan has finished 2nd in the British Universities Dryslope Championships and is a member of the England Dry Slope squad. Recently Rowan won the Celtic Cup Series Senior age group and as a result has moved up in the rankings into the British top ten. During this period she has been an excellent ambassador for Cardiff University and made a big impact within the Snowsports club both as a competitor and a coach. 

In the last 2 years the same 2 students have shared the award:

Kirsty Hatcher - Kirsty is now in the finaly year of a degree in Journalism, Media and Sociology. She is local to Cardiff and has been part of the Welsh National Ski squad over the last few years. Kirsty has also won Gold medals in various Celtic Cup age-grade events and after the recent British Universities Dry Slope Championships she has been invited to be part of the British Universities Ski Team which is good recognition for the performances she has been putting in.

Claire Brown - Claire is a first year student studying towards a degree in German and Spanish. Claire is from Telford and has received international recognition by being selected for the English Ski Squad in recent years as well as being ranked inside the British top 20 at senior level. Similarly to Kirsty, Claire has represented the University very well to date and was part of the team that performed so well at the recent British Universities Dry Slope Championships. Performances at this event also resulted in Claire being invited to be part of the British Universities Ski Team. As a side not, Claire is also a very good synchronised swimmer and was Captain of her School team who were National Champions before she started University.

Application details for the 2013-14 academic year will be released on this web page in the New Year. In the meantime, if you have any further queries please contact the Sports Development Co-ordinator:

Mr Paul Jones

Telephone:02920 879715