Trainer Mick Channon is confident Dan’s Dream can earn a spinal charity a huge windfall in the Qipco 1000 Guineas at Newmarket on Sunday.
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, subsequently 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 first-floor 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 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. It’s almost a Grand National story.
“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 now include cricket great Sir Ian Botham and rugby giant Sir 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 after winning two of her three starts, including last month’s Fred Darling Stakes at Newbury.
Earlier this week connections stumped up the required £30,000 to supplement her the first fillies’ Classic of the season and should she claim victory, she will pick up £310,487.
Channon told Racing UK: “There’s some enthusiastic people behind it and if it all works out they’re going to get a few quid, which is great.
“It a dream factory we live in. We’ve had a quiet time with two-year-olds and haven’t found anything for two or three years, then all of a sudden one jumps out at you.”
Of Dan’s Dream, the trainer added: “Last year I thought she was as good a two-year-old I’ve had since Flashy Wings or possibly even Queen’s Logic.
“It doesn’t just happen to me, lots of trainers have a good horse and then the wheels fall off and that is basically what happened, she kept going lame and having niggly problems.
“We gave her a run and she came home lame, so I sent her back to the owners. We got her back in January and the rest is history.
“She’s been working like the good fillies we’ve had in the past. It looks an open Guineas, so we’ll see what happens.
“What pleased me about Newbury was she showed there what she’s been showing me for six months.”