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Charity hopes for 'magical' moment for Cumbrian athlete

Geoff Brown's charity is supporting Simon Lawson. Credit: ITV Border

A local charity that is helping to fund a Cumbrian athlete's quest to be chosen for the Paralympic Games, is appealing for support to get him there.

The Geoff Brown Charitable Trust contacts businesses and individuals, and directs donations straight to local causes.

They've already passed the first £500 donation to Simon Lawson, a wheelchair racer from Maryport, and are hoping for more businesses to come forwards as sponsors.

Lawson, who broke his back in a motorcross accident, says being selected for the Rio Games is his "ultimate goal".

He won't get official funding until he's chosen, but needs to compete in events around the world to get the scores, and profile, he needs for selection.

It's the highest level of racing that you can compete in, so it's pretty much the ultimate goal, to get to the Olympics, or Paralympics, so that's the big goal, and I think it would mean everything really."

– Simon Lawson, athlete

It would just be magical, you know? And imagine the scenario where he hits Rio, and we've got a big television screen, all the people who've backed him, and he's got to that level. It would just be amazing."

– Geoff Brown

The money will go towards transport costs, and to pay for equipment like tyres, which need to be replaced after every race.

Lawson came tenth in the London Marathon earlier this year - he was the second fastest British competitor, behind 2012 Paralympic Champion David Weir.


Wheelchair racer surprises fan with medal

Shelby Watson presents Lucy Glendinning with her medal Credit: ITV Border

A wheelchair racer from Dumfries and Galloway has given one fan a surprise gift.

Shelby Watson, from Johnstone Bridge, won her classification at Sunday's London Marathon.

Yesterday, she presented her medal to Lucy Glendinning during a special assembly at Dalbeattie Primary School.

The eight-year-old had given Shelby one of her own necklaces for good luck before Sunday's race.

"I didn't ever think I'd be racing for my country"

Samantha in training Credit: ITV News Border

Samantha Kinghorn says it has still not sunk in that she will represent her country at the Commonwealth Games next year.

The 17-year-old wheelchair racer is the youngest member of the Scottish squad.

She said:

"We got a letter through the door. It is crazy because when I came into sport I just wanted to meet people that had gone through the same thing as me.

"I didn't think that I could be racing for my country. It is just absolutely amazing when you have actually been selected for the commonwealth squad. I keep thinking, "is this actually happening to me?"


Borders wheelchair racing champ targets 2014 Commonwealth Games

Samantha Kinghorn Credit: ITV News Border

Scottish Borders wheelchair racing champion Samantha Kinghorn has won five gold medals at the English Federation of Disability Sport Championships in the 100, 200, 400, 800 and 1500 metre titles.

The 17-year-old, form Gordon, will also represent Scotland at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow in 2014.

Two years ago Samantha was helping to clear snow on her family farm when she was crushed by falling ice and snow.

The accident broke her spine, leaving her paralysed and she was told she would never walk again.

During her six months of recovery in hospital, she used her love of sport to help with her rehabilitation.

Samantha then visited the National Centre for Disability Sport in Stoke Mandeville, Buckinghamshire, which is when she discovered wheelchair racing.

Borders girl aims for 2016 Paralympics

Samantha Kinghorn from Gordon in the Scottish Borders has been inspired by this years Paralympic Games, and is hoping to compete in 2016.

The 16-year-old was left paralysed after breaking her spine two years ago.

However, in just five months she has risen through the ranks as a paralympic hopeful for wheelchair racing at Rio de Janeiro in four years time.