Dan’s Dream run­ning for good cause

Sunday Independent (Ireland) - Sport - - RACING -

TRAINER Mick Chan­non is con­fi­dent Dan’s Dream can earn a spinal char­ity a huge wind­fall in the Qipco 1,000 Guineas at Newmarket to­day.

The Ci­tyscape filly was named af­ter Dan Ni­cholls, who be­came paral­ysed from the neck down af­ter break­ing his neck when he dived into a wave on Bondi beach in Aus­tralia aged 18.

His fa­ther, David Ni­cholls, set up the Ni­cholls Spinal In­jury Foun­da­tion and Dan Dream’s part-owner and breeder, Steven Smith, be­came in­volved af­ter break­ing his back jump­ing out of a first­floor win­dow of his hol­i­day home in France seven years ago to flee armed bur­glars.

Smith, who last year com­pleted the Lon­don Marathon with the aid of a stick, fell into a ravine and was told he would never walk again af­ter crush­ing his spine, break­ing a leg and arm and dis­lo­cat­ing his shoul­der.

Chan­non said: “Be­ing by Ci­tyscape out of a Royal Ap­plause mare Steven had him­self, it’s what we all dream of.

“Steven was badly in­jured and he’s the breeder, so it’s a great fairy­tale in that sense.”

Dan’s Dream, at the time un­named, was put up for auc­tion at a spinal in­jury golf day last year.

Along with Smith, her own­ers in­clude cricket great Ian Botham and rugby gi­ant Gareth Ed­wards and un­der the terms of the auc­tion, all prize-money earned goes to the foun­da­tion. So far Dan’s Dream has earned a shade un­der £40,000 (€45,000).

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