Horse named in honour of Rugby League legend Rob Burrow to raise funds for Motor Neurone Disease research

Features | 9th November 2020

Former Rugby league player Rob Burrow will take his fight against Motor Neurone disease to the racecourse in a bid to raise vital funds. 

Picture Credit: Sky Sports

Former Leeds Rhinos and Great Britain scrum-half Rob Burrow has launched a new charity-focused horse racing club to raise money for his Fight Back Fund with the Motor Neurone Disease Foundation.

The horse at the centre of the newly founded club, Burrow Seven, is named after shirt number worn by the former Rugby League star and will be trained by Yorkshire-based trainer Jedd O’Keeffe.

All members of the public can join the Burrow Seven Racing Club via the website for a one-off fee of £59 per head. All profits from membership sales will go towards the foundation, and members will also have the opportunity to win tickets to watch the horse run from the owners enclosure.

Rob Burrow was diagnosed with Motor Neurone Disease (MND) 12 months ago. MND is a debilitating condition that causes muscles to waste away after the loss of nerve cells that control muscles, speech and breathing.

Unfortunately, there’s no effective treatment or cure with around 1,500 people sadly perishing from the condition in Britain each year.

Burrow has showed huge courage as the disease has taken hold off his body. The father of three has been an incredible inspiration in his efforts to raise awareness and funds to tackle this disease.

You can watch the full BBC documentary of Burrow’s past year with MND here.

Rob Burrow, Burrow Seven
Credit: Hull Daily Mail

When meeting the horse, Rob Burrow said, “I’m a bit overwhelmed, I’ve been excited about this fundraising campaign for some time but meeting this magnificent racehorse was something else.”

Rob Burrow meeting horse Burrow Seven
Credit: Irish Mirror

“I’m really honoured to have him named after me and I can’t wait to see him in his first race. Thank you to everyone who supports the MND Association by taking part. Research is the key to cure this disease. Together we can do it.”

Former teammate and close friend Barrie McDermott has helped has been instrumental in setting up this wonderful initiative and said that it’s a great way to bring fans of both rugby league and horse racing together to help raise funds as well as having some fun along the way. 

Barrie Mcdermott on Burrow Seven, Rob Burrow and raising funds for MND
Credit: Sky Sports

McDermott went onto say, “It is something that’s Covid-friendly, it’s going to be fun, it’s going to be exciting, it’s going to be inclusive.”

“It’s all right for Rob, he’ll say himself that he is a former international athlete so everybody understandably jumps on board with the things he’s involved with.”

“But he very selfless individual, he’ll always put other people first and he says what about the ordinary people that don’t have the support network that he has got?”

“So he is shining a light on those people, their crusade and their mission but also trying to raise valuable funds to research and conquer what is a terrible disease.”