‘Please treat me as the same old Claire’: Triathlete Claire Danson left paralysed after crash with tractor

Danson has revealed details of an awful crash earlier this year

Triathlete Claire Danson has been left paralysed after a crash with a tractor while out on her bike.

Danson, who won the 30-34 age triathlon at the European Championships earlier this year, has revealed the extent of her injuries, which have left her unable to move from the belly button down.

In an emotional Instagram post Danson, the sister of England hockey player Alex Danson, has asked people to “treat her as the same old Claire.”

>>> Tom Boonen narrowly escapes injury after high-speed racing car crash 

Danson suffered two punctured lungs, a broken finger, wrists, humerus and both shoulders, fractures to all of the bones in her neck, and fractures and breaks to every one of her ribs.

The 30-year-old also suffered a complete sever to her spinal cord, which has left her paralysed.


Danson said: “Now you have all this info, all I ask is for you to remember that I’m still exactly the same person. I still have crazy hair and a mad laugh, I am still the clumsiest person you have met and I will still tell the most long-winded yet entertaining stories. So please treat me as the same old Claire. Nothing has changed there.”

While out riding on August 28, Danson collided with a tractor that left her with a catalogue of devastating injuries.

After undergoing multiple surgeries, Danson revealed details of her crash and said she wants people to follow her journey as she adjusts to life with spinal injuries.

>>> Eddy Merckx released from hospital following bike crash 

She added: “Having decided to share my story with you, including all the highs and 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.”

Thank you for reading 10 articles this month* Join now for unlimited access

Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

Join now for unlimited access

Try first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

Alex Ballinger

Alex Ballinger is editor of BikeBiz magazine, the leading publication for the UK cycle industry, and is the former digital news editor for CyclingWeekly.com. After gaining experience in local newsrooms, national newspapers and in digital journalism, Alex found his calling in cycling, first as a reporter, then as news editor responsible for Cycling Weekly's online news output, and now as the editor of BikeBiz. Since pro cycling first captured his heart during the 2010 Tour de France (specifically the Contador-Schleck battle) Alex covered three Tours de France, multiple editions of the Tour of Britain, and the World Championships, while both writing and video presenting for Cycling Weekly. He also specialises in fitness writing, often throwing himself into the deep end to help readers improve their own power numbers.  Away from the desk, Alex can be found racing time trials, riding BMX and mountain bikes, or exploring off-road on his gravel bike. He’s also an avid gamer, and can usually be found buried in an eclectic selection of books.