A RAWDON teenager’s dream of competing for Great Britain at the Paralympics is being backed by a team of lawyers.

The Leeds office of Irwin Mitchell has launched a fundraising drive to help 18-year-old Izzy Palmer, a talented para-dressage rider, compete in next year’s games in Tokyo.

A former client of Irwin Mitchell, Izzy was diagnosed with cerebral palsy at birth but was inspired to take up para-dressage after discovering the sport during the London Paralympics in 2012.

She has gone on to enjoy huge success in the field and has represented Great Britain on numerous occasions. The current Grade 4 national champion is also ranked fourth in the world in her category.

Now she is dreaming of success at Tokyo 2020 and beyond, but with the financial cost being high, lawyers at Irwin Mitchell have launched a campaign to help her get to the Games.

The law firm has a long-standing commitment to supporting disability sport through its Don’t Quit, Do It initiative.

Rachelle Mahapatra, a Partner and specialist medical negligence lawyer at Irwin Mitchell’s Leeds office, said: “Izzy is an incredible young sportswoman and we would love to see her get the opportunity to realise her dream of competing in the Paralympics next year.

“She is a fine example of the life-changing impact that disability sport initiatives can have and perfectly reflects the values that we have promoted through our work on Don’t Quit, Do It.”

Izzy, a student at St Mary’s Menston, said: “I have always loved horses and not only does riding mean I get to do something I really enjoy, it is also good for me. It acts as physiotherapy for the hemiplegia I experience on my left side.

“I have a busy year of competitions combined with sitting my A Levels but I am determined to give it my best shot. It would be amazing to get to compete in Tokyo. Soon I will be competing at Hartbury.

“I hope that I can also inspire others to take up a sport. There is no ‘dis’ in ability and it should never stop you from leading an active life and following your dreams.”

A Just Giving page has been set up to support Izzy, while Rachelle herself has been involved in several long distance walks to raise funds for her in recent years. Irwin Mitchell’s Court of Protection team provided a further £1000 sponsorship to help her with the ongoing costs of training.

For more information or to pledge your support to the campaign for Izzy Palmer, visit https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/izzypalmer.