Gearing Up - Paralympics 2016
Training for the Paralympics costs money. Every athlete knows this and every athlete needs support. In my sport, para-cycling, there is not only the training and qualifying competitions that I have to fund, but I need modified equipment in order to participate. With your support, in 2014, I was able to get an approved trike for competition and compete in my first race – the USA Para-Cycling Road National Championships in Madison, Wisconsin – where I placed 5th. Thank you for making that happen.
In 2015, the funds you contribute will support participation in national and international qualifying events, training, and equipment maintenance.
Now, let me tell you about myself, why I believe I have a chance, and why, with your support, I can make a podium finish a reality. I ride over 6,000 miles each year and with proper training, I have made huge progress. Cycling has been a form of rehabilitation for me physically from chronic issues resulting from living with Cerebral Palsy as well as mentally teaching me confidence in my strength. It is now my personal mission to raise awareness that people with physical limitations can lead an active life through sports. And while I've had many challenges in life, simply put, I never give up until I achieve what I set out to do.
Some highlights of my cycling career thus far:
- May 2015 – 5th place – 2015 USA Cycling Para-cycling Road Nationals, MT2 Division Time Trial – Chattanooga, Tennessee
- May 2015 – 4th place – 2015 USA Cycling Para-cycling Road Nationals, MT2 Division Time Trial – Chattanooga, Tennessee
- May 2015 – 1st place – Tennessee Para-cycling Open, MT2 Division Road Race – Oak Ridge, Tennessee
- May 2015 – 1st place – Tennessee Para-cycling Open, MT2 Division Time Trial – Oak Ridge, Tennessee
- May 2015 – 5th place – U.S. Para-cycling Time Trial at the USA Cycling Collegiate Championships, MT2 Division – Asheville, NC
- May 2015 – 4th place Défi Sportif Altergo / Challenge Longhi, MT2 Division Road Race – Montreal, Canada
- May 2015 – 5th place Défi Sportif Altergo, MT2 Division Time Trial – Montreal, Canada
- May 2015 – 4th place Défi Sportif Altergo, MT2 Division Road Race – Montreal, Canada
- April 2015 – Attended the US Paralympics Cycling Talent Development Camp at the Olympic Training Center – Chula Vista, CA
- April 2015 – 2nd place – Redlands Bicycle Classic, MT2 Road Race – Redlands, CA
- April 2015 – 2nd place – Redlands Bicycle Classic, MT2 Time Trial – Redlands, CA
- February 2015 – Attended the US Paralympics Cycling Talent Development Camp – Clermont, FL
- July 2014 – 5th place – USA Para-Cycling Road National Championships, MT2 Road Race – Madison, Wisconsin
- July 2014 – 5th place – USA Para-Cycling Road National Championships, MT2 Time Trial – Madison, Wisconsin
My goal, with your help, is a podium finish in Rio. It will be a lot of work, but it is possible. I look forward to regularly updating you on the incredible, yet slightly daunting, journey ahead. Please check out my website ( www.behindtheride.com) and like my Facebook page ( https://www.facebook.com/davidparalympics2016).
Thank you for your continued support,
I am so thankful to have you by my side over the past three years. Since the conclusion of the Paralympic Games in September, I have continued to train for the upcoming 2017 race season with the intention of making another bid for the Paralympics in 2020. But after careful consideration and input from family, my coach and my medical team, I have decided to step away from racing at this time.
Please know that this is not the end of cycling for me. I love it far too much. With the New Year brings new cycling goals and challenges. I will continue to train on a high level, as I’m excited to return to touring. Also, I will remain highly active in my local cycling community and as an advocate for para sports, in particular, paracycling.
I am extremely proud of what I accomplished in such a short period of time and I couldn't have done any of this without your support and encouragement. For that, I am forever grateful and I can't thank you enough. With your help, I achieved a ranking of 3rd in the US and 12th in the world and I made it all the way to the Paralympic Trials. It was an honor and a thrill to represent Team USA and be a part of their talent pool.
I wish you happiness and good health for 2017 and beyond. I’ll see you on the road!
April 1 – 6 – Para-cycling Talent Development Camp – US Olympic Training Center, Chula Vista, CA
April 6 – 10 – Redlands Classic – Redlands, CA
May 2 – 9 – World Cup #1 – Pietermaritzburg, South Africa
May 16 – 23 – World Cup #2 – Oostende, Belgium
May 25 -30 -Para-cycling Road Nationals – Winston Salem, NC
June 20 – 25 – Para-cycling Talent Development Camp – US Olympic Training Center, Colorado Springs, CO
July 2 – 3 – Paralympic Team Trials – Charlotte, NC (Selections)
September 1 – 19 - Paralympic Games, – Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
October 17 - 22 - Para-cycling Talent Development Camp – US Olympic Training Center, Chula Vista, CA
Thank you so much for your encouragement as I move one step closer.
All the best,
David...it's been truly inspirational to follow your journey. I hope our paths cross again soon! TLB next week?
Bravo, David!!! What good news regarding your ranking. We'll be happy to have you touring locally and advocating everywhere-ly.