Out for Sport Awards 2023 Winners

Out for Sport Awards 2023

The Out For Sport Awards is an evening dedicated to celebrating the remarkable achievements and contributions of LGBTQ+ sports clubs, teams and individuals.

The Out For Sport Awards 2023 took place on 24 November at Clifford Chance in Canary Wharf.

Club Award Winners

Club of the Year

This award recognises an established LGBTQ+ club for an incredible year of hard work and brilliant support to its members.

Winner: Knockout Boxing

Knockout Boxing started from a once-a-week class, now delivering 5 sessions per week Knockout have become the first LGBTQ+ boxing club affiliated with England Boxing in 143 years.

Award Shortlist: Camden Shorinji Kempo Club, Knockout Boxing, London Cruisers Basketball Club, Out to Swim, South London Smashers, Unicorns LGBTQIA+ Netball Club.

Emerging Club of the Year

This award is for the club that is under three years old and doing show-stopping things.

Winner: LDN Riders

LDN Riders have seen a meteoric rise in membership, from 5 to over 430 members in just two years. Beyond fostering a safe environment, the club’s notable contributions include raising over £11,000 through annual London-Paris rides for Trans inclusion charity Not a Phase. Additionally, their partnership with law firm Leigh Day facilitated leadership training for ride captains, initiating dedicated monthly sessions catering to female, trans+, and non-binary cyclists.

Most Inclusive Club

This award recognises clubs that have embraced and embedded the principles of equality, diversity, and inclusion within their day-to-day club business, resulting in a diverse and happy membership base.

Winner: London Royals Hockey Club

Powered by Nike Diversity Inclusion funding, the Royals broke barriers for trans and non-binary inclusion. They organised a free trans-inclusive sports day with 7 LGBTQ+ sports clubs and Not A Phase, featuring Trans Intro to Hockey sessions. The initiative extended beyond hockey, guiding participants to personalised sporting avenues.

Award Shortlist: Knockout Boxing, London Royals Hockey Club, South London Smashers, Unicorns LGBTQIA+ Netball Club

Tournament / Competition of the Year

This award celebrates OFS member clubs that organise and execute incredible tournaments and competitions that leave a lasting impression on the community and their members.

Winner: Camden Shorinji Kempo Club

Camden Shorinji Kempo Club hosted a groundbreaking non-gendered tournament in 2023, challenging traditional norms in a male-dominated sport at the federation level. The event garnered praise from senior leaders in the kempo community and earned international recognition and accolades.

Award Shortlist: Camden Shorinji Kempo: Camden Kempo Non-gendered Tournament, London Cruisers Basketball Club: London Cruisers Basketball Tournament, London Royals Hockey Club: Pride Cup 2023, Out to Swim: London IGLA 2023, Unicorns LGBTQIA+ Netball Club: Unicorns Pride Tournament 2023, South London Smashers: Smashers Singles Tournament and Finals Day

Team Award Winners

Team of the Year

For the team that embodies the spirit of the club and leads by example in its field.

Winner: London Royals Hockey Club Men’s 2s

London Royals Hockey Club Men’s 2s secured victory with their best season performance, finishing strong in second place in the 2022-23 London leagues. Recognised for sportsmanship and development, they earned the internal Club Team of the Year Award for volunteering, coaching, and umpiring. Their success embodies the club’s mission for a safe, welcoming, and inclusive hockey environment.

Outstanding Sporting Achievement for a Team

This award specifically recognises the achievements of a team within a club in their competitive ventures.

Winner: Team Ishigaki: Ishigaki Jujitsu

Team Ishigaki, Ishigaki Jujitsu, shone in their federation’s first national competition since 2019. Despite it being the first national event for some members, they clinched an impressive 7 gold, 9 silver, and 8 bronze medals across 9 categories. Their exceptional performance not only impressed judges but also earned them an offer of further coaching from the former coach of the GB team.

Award Shortlist: Rosanna and Robin: Camden Shorinji Kempo Club, Team Ishigaki: Ishigaki Jujitsu, London Cruisers Basketball Club, EuroGames Men’s Gold Medallist Team: London Royals Hockey Club, Unicorns EMMNA Nationals Team 2023: Unicorns LGBTQIA+ Netball Club

Individual Award Winners

Outstanding Sporting Achievement for an Individual

For the individual who has achieved greatness within the last twelve months, whether through sporting events, personal growth or supporting others to achieve greatness.

Winner: Kavita Kapoor: Camden Shorinji Kempo Club

Kavita Kapoor achieved a rare 4th-level black belt, showcasing exceptional skills in self-defense and weapons. Among the top 10 highest-graded judges in the UK, she ranks as the third-highest active female practitioner. Kapoor’s journey reflects resilience, overcoming surgery and establishing her as an icon in martial arts.

Award Shortlist: Alex Carington: LDN Riders, Kavita Kapoor: Camden Shorinji Kempo Club, Matt Hilley: South London Smashers

Club Spirit

This award seeks to recognise the unsung hero within a member club who makes it all happen and embodies everything the club stands for each and every day.

Winner: Karan Bhumbla, London Knights Basketball Club

Karan Bhumbla, former chair of London Knights Basketball Club, has dedicated countless hours to grow the club into a community with 30+ members. Whether it was navigating financial constraints or maintaining a sense of unity during Covid, Karan’s legacy leaves behind a thriving haven for basketball enthusiasts.

Award Shortlist: Adam James Swindell: South London Smashers, Chelsea Perrin: Camden Shorinji Kempo Club, Cleo Lyn: London Royal Hockey Club, Dean Pretorius: London Otters Rowing Club, Karan Bhumbla: London Knights Basketball Club, Santiago Fernandez: South London Smashers, Sue Shaw and Ian Howarth: Ishigaki Jujitsu, Tim Sullivan: Kings Cross Steelers 

Ivan Bussens Lifetime Achievement

In memory of Ivan Bussens (OFS co-founder), this award recognises individuals who have gone above and beyond to create environments in which LGBTQ+ sport can thrive.

Winner: Robert Dufton: Not So Trad

A founding member of Not So Trad Southern LGBT+ Climbers, Robert has been instrumental in growing the club to over 120 members, with half being women. Beyond climbing, he challenged stereotypes, contributed to LGBTQ+ climbing articles and advocated for equity and inclusion. Joining the BMC’s Equity Diversity and Inclusion committee, he founded its LGBTQ sub-group and recruited the BMC’s first full-time EDI officer. Robert initiated ClimbOut 2023, the UK’s first LGBTQ climbing festival, attracting 209 participants with exceptional inclusivity ratings. In 2019, he joined London Frontrunners, becoming their Veteran male champion. Robert ran his first marathon at age 60, raising over £5,000 for charities, including the Terrence Higgins Trust.

Award Shortlist: Robert Dufton: Not So Trad, Ryan Watson: South London Smashers

Be A Game Changer

For sponsorship opportunities or to discuss how you can support the Out For Sport Awards 2024, please contact our fundraising team via email. Your support will play a crucial role in making the Out For Sport Awards an even greater success, furthering our collective mission.

To support the Out for Sport Awards 2023, Out For Sport received a £500 Magic Little Grant through the partnership between Localgiving and Postcode Society Trust. Localgiving is the UK’s leading membership and support network for local charities and community groups. Postcode Society Trust is a grant-giving charity funded by players of the People’s Postcode Lottery

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