On the afternoon of January 22, 2000, Yamaha factory rider Jimmy Button got out of shape in the whoops section of the San Diego Supercross at Qualcomm Stadium. A top-five rider early in the series, Button landed awkwardly, going over the handlebars in what seemed like a minor crash. He took the brunt of the impact on the top of his helmet and immediately lost all feeling from his neck down. He was taken by ambulance to nearby Sharps Memorial Hospital and began a process of recovery that continues to this day. The crash ended Button’s career as a professional racer—that’s the bad news. The good news is that his crash and subsequent rehabilitation also served as the catalyst for the Road 2 Recovery Foundation.
Nearly two decades later, Jimmy Button is doing better. He slowly regained feeling, then had to relearn how to walk, write, type, drive—all the basics in life. He now works at Wasserman Media Group and helps manage athletes in all forms of motorsports alongside his close childhood friend Bob Moore, the 1994 FIM 125cc World Champion. Button and Moore are also the founders of Road 2 Recovery, a 501(c) nonprofit organization for AMA-licensed professional motocross/supercross athletes who might find themselves in a similar situation to what Button and his family faced back in 2000. Road 2 Recovery offers financial assistance as well as motivational, emotional, and spiritual support. R2R also helps guide the injured through the bureaucratic and costly maze of medical bills, insurance, rehabilitation, and more. They’ve helped dozens of athletes, but they want to do more—and more is needed.