Ricky James, the 20 year-old paraplegic from Murrieta, CA will be featured on NBC Sports this Sunday, April 12th at 1:30pm PST/ 4:30pm EST.
After Ricky’s dramatic and inspirational participation in the Ford Ironman World Championships in Kona, HI., he was invited to participate in the Foster Grant 70.3 Ironman World Championships, only 3-weeks later.
Without much recovery time, James finished the race in 5 hours, 30 minutes and 27 seconds, only 2 minutes shy of the course record in the Physically Challenged division, taking the 70.3 Ironman World Championship title.
For more information, please visit: http://www.youtube.com/user/ironmantriathlon
Ricky James was well on his way to fulfilling a childhood dream of becoming a Supercross champion, when life took a drastic turn. Four years ago, at just 16 years old, he was injured in a Motocross accident on the track at one of the largest Amateur National races in the country. The blow to his T7 vertebrae left him paralyzed from his sternum down. Today at 20, he’s deftly navigating the new terrain of his life.
Mere days after the accident, James declared that he would ride again. In 2007 he competed in the SCORE International Baja 500 in Ensenada Mexico. Completing his grueling 120 mile leg in 4 hours made him the first paraplegic to ever attempt this race on a 2 wheeled dirt bike.
Then came 2008... He earned a Silver Medal at the 2008 X Games 12 and then set his sights on a career in NASCAR. He won the West Coast Pro Truck series, recording a “Hat Trick”, 2008 Rookie of the Year, Irwindale Champion and overall West Coast Pro Truck Champion for 2008. He did this by putting his truck on pole in 10 of 12 races, recorded 3 wins, 9 top-3 finishes and 2 track records in qualifying.
To top it off, Ricky competed in the 2008 Ironman World Triathlon Championship in Kona, HI., the most demanding and prestigious sporting event known to mankind , where he was documented by NBC Sports and completed in 12 hours and 44 minutes in his first attempt. A month later, he won the Overall Half Ironman World Championship in Clearwater, FL.
For 2009, Ricky will take his racing career to the next level by competing in the NASCAR Whelen Late-Model Series at Irwindale Speedway. 2009 will be spent developing a new style of hand control and getting some seat time with his eye on a full 2010 racing season in the Late Model division.
Ricky continues to be a spokesperson for the Life Rolls On Foundation and Challenged Athletes Foundation (CAF) where he has participated in numerous National commercials, speaking engagements and Public Service Announcements. James is a true inspiration to all he touches and continues to spread his belief and testimony that, through Perseverance, anything is possible.