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Student starts another new chapter by penning a book

Date 29.09.2020

A student whose life as a motorcycling enthusiast and expert was altered by a debilitating stroke has put pen to paper about his sporting passion.

Andy Ibbott – from Northampton and who is part way through his Foundation degree in Sport and Exercise Science – was undergoing a routine operation in 2011 when he suffered a stroke.

He spent the next six months in various hospitals attempting to regain his speech and walking as much as possible.

Since starting his degree with the University of Northampton (UON) in 2017, Andy has juggled his studies with a range of self-directed extra-curricular work that helps to boost his speech and communication skills.

He has appeared in a BBC TV programme about people who have a disability or impairment attempting to get back in to work and took part in the prestigious ‘Map the System’ competition presenting to Saïd Business School and other leading higher education institutions.

Now, he adds authorship to his post-stroke accomplishments. ‘Moto GP: Performance Riding Techniques’ is a manual that covers motorsport track riding techniques, from ace acceleration, brilliant braking and winning a championship (Andy has coached world champs Sandro Cortese and Tom Luthi).

He was able to complete the book with support from the University’s Changemaker Hub. Andy completed the Enterprise Boost, an enterprise start-up programme which UON offers to all its students.

Andy attended several workshops through the programme, including sessions on business planning, making sales, the use of social media marketing, business legal structures and taxes, and used these training opportunities to develop his business idea, which was the publishing of a fully revised and updated edition of the book he first penned in 2009.

Of his book and other achievements, Andy says: “I’m many years in to my recovery now and can see the lighter side of things. So, I joke I’m the man with half a brain, because only 50% of it works as it did, pre-stroke.

“I like to keep that half 100% occupied as much as possible, so writing the book has really helped and I’m very proud to have finished it and thank the Changemaker Hub for all their support. In a former life, I was a bit of an expert in the field of motorsports, so writing about it has helped keep my brain busy and I hope other motorsports fans appreciate it, too.”

Find out more about Sport and Exercise Science at the University of Northampton.