Benji Heywood - Full-time Director of Ultimate at University of St Andrews

It is with mixed feelings that I would like to announce (a little late) that Benji recently left his role with UK Ultimate to become full-time Director of Ultimate at St Andrews.  I have mixed feelings because we really didn’t want to lose him from our team, but do want to celebrate the amazing milestone that he has a full-time position coaching ultimate at a UK university.  

In general questions about UKU events should now be sent to Meg Price: events@ukultimate.com.

Benji started playing ultimate in 1994 at St Andrews University.  He soon became involved as a volunteer organising university and indoor ultimate, and continued to help out for many years whilst being a perpetual student.  I’m not sure when he started coaching the team at the University - but it’s a long time ago.  In recent years, the St Andrews teams have become increasingly successful since he was taken on in a formal coaching position.  For many years he was the Indoor Director of Competitions for UKU (we were “the UKUA” at the time), and later became a board member of UK Ultimate as Director of Competitions.  He’s been on the WFDF rules committee for several years, and has been closely involved with the last few revisions of the WFDF rules.  He can claim a good deal of credit for the “genzone rule” in the mixed division.

In Jan 2013, UKU reached the point where we could employ a part-time events coordinator, and Benji grabbed the position with huge enthusiasm and energy.  Once we had won bids to host WU23 and WUGC, we were able to make the position almost full-time and, thanks to Benji’s hard work, have been growing that area ever since.  He took control of the competition elements of both WU23s and WUGC with great success.  

He has had a really enormous impact on the growth and development of ultimate in this country.  No doubt he’s going to continue to do so, but his coaching work will mean he can’t give us so much time.  If you have enjoyed playing ultimate here in the last 15-20 years please find him and say thanks or buy him a beer.  If you have more time, ask him a questions about the rules ;-)!  Either way - check out his blog https://understandingultimate.wordpress.com/ which is full of thoughtful comment.

Thanks Benji!

Si Hill, UK Ultimate