Belfast Telegraph

Cancer battler Danielle's pride as mare named after her in Cheltenham bow

By David Young

A horse named in honour of brain tumour battler Danielle McGriskin had its first outing at the prestigious Cheltenham races yesterday.

The mare, named Danielle's Journey, finished 12th in the Dawn Run Mares Novices Hurdle, with a starting price of 66/1.

She was ridden by local jockey Brian Hughes, and trained by Stuart Crawford.

Owned by Antrim's Realta horse racing club, the four-year-old needed a name and, having heard about brave Danielle's battle with cancer and hydrocephalus, the club approached Danielle's mum Amanda last summer to see if they could help.

The club offered Danielle a 5% share in the racehorse, meaning a proportion of her winnings goes to the Danielle McGriskin Fund for The Brain Tumour Charity.

Danielle (19), from Upper Ballinderry, was diagnosed with a brain tumour and hydrocephalus in 2011. She has already raised more than £100,000 for brain tumour research.

Hopes had been high that Danielle's Journey would repeat her success of St Patrick's Day 2015, when she was first across the line at Down Royal - but it was not to be.

But last night, Danielle was staying positive: "We're keeping our fingers crossed for next time - and I'm sure the guys at Realta Horse Racing will get her up and going again.

"After all, it was only her first time in the big time!"

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