“I am still exactly the same person. I still have crazy hair and a mad laugh”
If you follow the extensive reporting of Age-Group racing that I do on Tri247, you’ll likely have seen the name Claire Danson pop up in reports quite frequently in recent years.
In June this year (report HERE), Claire was the fastest British athlete, second quickest Age-Grouper overall and the Gold medal winner in the 30-34 division at the ETU Triathlon European Championships in Weert, Belgium. Just a week later she was an Age-Group winner at 70.3 Staffordshire. Last year, she was also a European Bronze medalist in both Glasgow and Tartu.
On 28th August this year, Claire, who is the sister of Great Britain Olympic Hockey Gold medal winner Alex Danson, was involved in a serious bike collision with a tractor. Through a mutual friend, I had some awareness of an accident and that it was potentially serious, but the severity of that has been confirmed this week.
In emotional announcements from both Claire and Alex – both embedded below – they confirm that a complete sever to her spinal cord at T9 has left Claire “paralysed from my belly button downwards”.
Please follow Claire and #DoItForDanson
Having decided to share my story with you including all the highs and the lows I would like you to follow me and I would like you to learn all about spinal injuries with me. This world is so new to me I want to help educate others as to what it is like and what it involves.
You can follow Claire on Instagram HERE
A fundraising page has also been set up to help Claire in the next stage of what well be a long journey:
You can donate HERE
We have set up this GoFundMe in response to the overwhelming number of people who have been in touch wanting to know how to help and support Claire. We hope to raise funds for Claire as well as awareness for why she is still with us today. Simply put, without her helmet, her fitness & strength, the air ambulance and Southampton’s incredible Neuro ICU, Claire wouldn’t be here today. The funds raised through this page will help Claire on her journey to achieve whatever she wishes. It will support her rehabilitation and provide her with vital equipment and services required for her to fulfil her potential… maybe even buy her first race chair!
Sincere best wishes to Claire and all of her family and friends. If you are an Instagram user, please do give her a follow – and if you can spare a few pounds, then I’m sure it will be put to very good use by the very determined young woman who has not given up on her sporting ambitions.
Claire Danson’s Instagram announcement
Alex Danson’s Instagram post: