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Daniel Weston - special Olympian

Let's support Daniel Weston - our own medal-winning Special Olympian

 

Back in 2015 Brend Hotels got behind North Devon local, Daniel Weston, in his bid to compete in the 2015 Special Olympics in Los Angeles. 

At the time, Daniel was a trainee chef at The Barnstaple Hotel - and with the help of friends, family, generosity from strangers and through his own hard work ethic, Daniel went on to win a bronze medal in cycling for Great Britain. A very big achievement and everyone at Brend Hotels was proud to have played just a tiny part in what he accomplished. 

We're getting behind Daniel once again for the 2019 Special Olympics in Abu Dhabi

The Special Olympics World Games are held every four years and they're the world's largest sports organisation for children and adults with intellectual disabilities. However, unlike the Olympics and the Paralympics, the Special Olympics are not funded by the government or through sporting grants. Meaning that participants have to fund themselves, paying for training, equipment, travel and every element of taking part. 

Daniel is still with us at The Barnstaple Hotel, graduating from a trainee to a commis chef and as before we wish to support Daniel with his efforts to reach Abu Dhabi.

Please join us in sponsoring Daniel to get him to the Abu Dhabi Special Olympics in 2019.

Sponsor Daniel

Daniel is autistic and as most will know, autism is a lifelong developmental disability that affects how a person communicates with and relates to other people. It also affects how people make sense of the world around them.

But the disability hasn’t stopped Daniel. Before the age of 22 he had already graduated from Foxes Academy (a specialist catering college and training hotel for young adults with learning disabilities) and earnt himself a position at The Barnstaple Hotel as a trainee chef but has now progressed to commis chef; a real asset to the kitchen.

He has also carried the Olympic Torch for the London 2012 Olympic games, met David Cameron, competed in many national and international sporting events and continues to be a shining light in the sport of cycling.

Fundraising for Abu Dhabi

Most of the Great British cycling team are based in Scotland, therefore a lot of the larger training events take place in the north of England or Glasgow. So Daniel’s elite training program invariably involves long-distance travel and specialised equipment.  

In order to fund getting to and training for Abu Dhabi, Daniel will do a sponsored two-mile fundraising swim at the North Devon Leisure Centre on 26th April.

Then he will be supporting the Special Olympics North Devon community group with their fundraising efforts, who are planning a live music evening at Barnstaple Football Club on 7th July. The money raised will be shared between Daniel and another North Devon athlete also selected for the World Games.

At the time of writing this, we have been informed that Daniel has already raised almost £2000, making him over half way towards his total. Can you help him reach his target?

What makes Daniel Weston a true Olympian?

He was diagnosed with autism at an early age but has been using these traits to help him commit to and excel at sports for his whole life. He was taught to ride a bike at the age of six and moved to no stabilisers with great ease. Daniel also loves swimming, as the repetitiveness of it helps to calm and focus him. 

At sixteen he started competing in road races on a tandem bike with his Dad piloting. Before he knew it, Daniel then progressed to cycling on the road on a single bike, entering local competitions. 

He regularly competes in national Special Olympic events on both tandem and solo bikes - his Dad still with him every peddle of the way. 

He took part in the Special Olympics European Summer Games in Belgium in 2014, then he won the bronze at the previously mentioned 2015 World Summer Games. Since then he's also won bronze at the 2017 National Games.

Whilst training for and competing in these major events, Daniel also graduated from Foxes Academy in 2014 where he studied hospitality and catering. He landed himself work experience at The Barnstaple Hotel where he mastered a number of roles but his favourite work was in the kitchen, where he shone and was a popular member of the team.

This makes sense as Daniel’s other passion, aside from swimming and cycling, is cooking. His signature dish is his Russian Grandma’s chicken soup

Without a doubt, we are extremely proud of Daniel and his achievements and will continue to support him. Mr Justin Brend, Director of The Barnstaple Hotel, wanted to show the Brend Hotel Group’s support of Daniel with a donation towards his Abu Dhabi training.

It is an honour to know Daniel. His dedication to training, travel and overall commitment to cycling tells us that no matter what happens in Abu Dhabi he will be a true champion once again. 

Please show Daniel your support by sponsoring him via his Go Fund Me page.

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