Happy New Year

Posted by Ralph | 5:21 PM

Happy New Year to everybody! The year came and went, next thing you know 2009 will be here. I had my meeting with the Vocational Rehabilitation counsellor yesterday to review my business plan. I have tried to grow my business to the best of my ability but I am at a point where I'm overwhelmed.

I love this job and I see a great future in it, what I need is to make it a profitable business. So I'm doing what is neccessary, letting go of my hard headed pride and taking the help that I need.

So I put together a decent proposal, Executive Summary, Requested Equipment, Description of how I use my equipment and a 1st quarter schedule of events I could attend. I have to tighten up my summary, the VR counsellor gave me some ideas and I am going to implement those today.

All in all 2008 will be a great year for me. I'm living independently, will be driving for the 1st time in 10 years and ROLLINGPIX will be a career instead of a 40+ hour a week unpaid hobby.

I hope all of your dreams come true and if I can help in any way let me know

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Improvement

Posted by Ralph | 2:10 PM

I have a sidebar on each side now.... Only one sidebar to move now!

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Still not right

Posted by Ralph | 9:28 AM

Well I got the three columns ok, now if I can figure out putting the sidebars on the left side everything will be perfect. Maybe today will be the day. I'm tired and in alot of pain but things won't get done by themselves.

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Another redesign of ROLLINGPIX

Posted by Ralph | 7:14 PM

The reason for this absence is pretty straight forward, working on my Voc. Rehab loan package and I have been tooling around with different three column Blogger Beta templates based on the minima template. I want to be able to have more info in the same space as a traditional minima template.

I like the look of having my posts on the left and two equal sized sidebars(220px) to the right. I worked on the CSS code for 5 hours yesterday and implemented the code mods, the posts are in the right place, the right sidebar in it's place and the space for the second sidebar is there.... blank.

I also added Snap to my site and now you can move your mouse over a link and preview it in a pop-up window, pretty cool piece of tech eh?

It's going to take a few days more but when finished ROLLINPIX will be all the better for it.

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Stem Cells or Cyborgs 2nd Edition

Posted by Ralph | 10:05 PM


Back in September of 2006 I wrote an article on the topics of stem cells versus cyborg technology and how they can, and are being applied to people with SCI and other disabilities. Since then there have been many advancements in both stem cell research and cybernetic technology.

In Stem Cell advancements: Chronic wounds like decubitis ulcers "bedsores" are a major problem for people with spinal cord injuries. I had one on my tailbone for 16 months that I got while I was in the hospital, Christopher Reeves died from one, and they are bad news. Here's the good news. "Thailand’s National Innovation Agency chief Supachai Lorlowhakarn declared that they have experimented with a new stem cell therapy extracted from the patients own blood on chronic wounds on the feet of several diabetes patients, aged from 50 to 72 and it was a success. In addition to the patient’s blood, stem cells may also be extracted from his bone marrow."

The stem cell treatment of wounds of diabetes patients, which costs about (US$5,880) per patient, can save a large sum of money, compared to perhaps $33,000 in conventional treatment for a leg wound. The money isn't half of the problem, I know from my own personal experience laying down and being out of action, missing work... etc, all add up to a much greater overall cost in "quality of life" terms.

As reported by surgeryencyclopedia.com: "More than 90% of amputations performed in the United States are due to circulatory complications of diabetes. Sixty to eighty percent of these operations involve the legs." The are currently 350,000 amputees living in the U.S. with 135,000 more occuring every year. The number of spinal cord injury survivors in the U.S. is approximately 400,000 with 10 to 11,000 new injuries that could be helped this research In fact the total number is staggering, betweeen the SCI and amputee populations close to a million Americans could see benefits from this research.

Another really amazing stem cell therapy treatment has been performed in Cuba: "Cuba carried out for the first time a central nervous system stem cell transplant in a fully paraplegic 32-year patient, who is satisfactorily recovering just three months after having undergone surgery.

Neurosurgeon at the Cira Garcia Hospital, Dr. Amado Delgado Gómez, said the patient is already recovering leg movement and can walk assisted by a mechanical device known as orthotics. Dr. Delgado pointed out that this experience will be further extended to several hospitals throughout the island, despite the high cost of this technology, which exceeds $60.000 U.S. dollars.

I still believe that cyborg tech is much cooler and less contested ethically than stem cells. Dean Kamen, inventor of the Ibot has made an awesome pneumatic bionic arm. Unlike traditional prosthetics, which come in a limited variety, Kamen designed his arm to fit the person. It’s proportionate to the patient. By scanning the other arm the team is able to recreate that arm on the other side. The most amazing aspect is the idea of using stem-cell research to create a small implant, which would allow the user to not only have complete control but also to feel. By combining the disciplines of prosthetics/orthotics AND stem cell tech is a phenomonal leap forward in mobilizing people with disabilities.

My favorite piece of technology is the HAL 5 Exoskeleton, it's basically a wearable frame of motors, gears and batteries that detect, and amplify nervous system output with myo-electric sensors - biofeedback equipment and gives the wearer a potential ten fold increase in strength. The price, $42,000 is comparable to some of the more extravagant Tilt/Recline and Space power wheelchairs, the Ibot is $29,000 and it's a great chair, but... you can WALK in HAL.


My personal hope is that by combining the promising stem cell technique of Dr.Gomez and some therapy at the hospital, myself and many others could replace the orthotics and prosthetics and go straight to HAL.

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Trying something else new

Posted by Ralph | 8:31 AM

Well I have been doing some new things like link lists, YouTube Videos and other things. Wheelchair Adventurers and Athletes are doing a lot of great things but I need to keep diversifying and try to bring more visitors here and then plug my core message.

The new addition to my website will be new advances in cyborg, prosthetic and medical advances in technology advancements for disabled wheelchair users although I won't limit myself to that. The way I figure it is most everybody is hurting physically in one way or another and maybe I might be able to show more people that even with a major disability like total paralysis, you could sip and puff your way across the English Channel or just about anything you could dream of. I mean it seems to me that the only thing we are limited by is our willingness to make our dreams come true.

We are also going to make some minor adjustments to the blogs structure and make it easier to navigate to my interviews.

As always thanks for coming and check out this batch of medically related links to disability.

> Bionic Arm Recipients claim regained "sense of touch" in their prosthetics.
> Stem Cell breakthrough - Human skin reprogrammed into new stem cells.
> Dean Kamen, Inventor of the Ibot has made a bionic arm the details are sketchy, but apparently it will be wired to the brain. I can't feel my arms anyway so it would be awesome. I'll take two! (video 2)

That's it for now.

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Trying something new

Posted by Ralph | 8:41 AM

After a marathon 6 hour session of figuring out how to setup a youtube channel I got it sorted. So every couple of days now I'm going to post some cool wheelchair related videos here on ROLLINGPIX.

Here Goes!

> Really pretty wheelchair girl Sarah is modeling
> Inexpensive but very cool looking manual chair, built for the developing world.
> Australian quad invents an awesome hybrid manual/power chair. This rig is amazing!
> Rock Crawling in a power wheelchair?! You betcha. In an X5 Frontier.

Have a great day everybody.

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Amazing wheelchair prototype

Posted by Ralph | 2:19 PM

Man! That's so damn cool.

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I lucked into this vid on youtube today and it's absolutely fantastic. I should use youtube more eh? I'm still wading back into Rollingpix as a business and they are definitely able to provide top class visibility...

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I was really stoked to get the second interview with Greg Malory after his historic, successful navigation of the Mangde Chu river in the Himalayan Mountain ranges of Tibet.

If you didn't get a chance to read his recounting of being the first paraplegic to run this "never before run" stretch of whitewater you can find it here

Ralph - Hi Greg! How's it going? I have been working on this new article, hoping to sell it to a publication and add to my funds for the winter sports travel fund. Please answer my questions and if there is anything want to add I would appreciate it!

Ralph - I just saw on the Paralympics website that you made the team... Congratulations! I know you are incredibly busy with handling your job as a lawyer and training hard in this winters snow season. Where and how have you been training? Is your health good?

Greg - It's been a tough summer - I came down with a bacterial infection the start of July and was basically sidelined until mid-September. I'm feeling good now so hopefully I can make up for lost time. I've been doing a lot of strength training (core and weights), roller skiing along the river in Portland and handcycling.It's starting to rain in Oregon so I've been getting some good kayaking in as well.

Ralph - I know that back in May you and the team attended a Sports Science Center for monitoring. Has this been benificial to your team? I know that you trained hard all summer and your anxious to put it to the snow.

Greg - We just did another testing camp a couple of weeks ago. It was good to see the results compared against our May graphs. However, they changed the protocol a little bit so the comparison may be a little flawed. I think this stuff is definitely going to help us but there is a learning curve to go up for all involved.

Ralph - In our previous interview back in March fresh on the heels of your amazing Tibetan Expedition you mentioned that that you were the Captain of the Nordic Team. On the Paralympics website it says Jon Kreamelmeyer is the head coach is that the same as Captain? Did you step down? Or is he the Coach and your the Captain of your teammates? What are the differences between your job and his?

Greg - JK is the head coach. I'm just the team captain - basically an informal liaison between the athletes and the coaching staff.

Ralph - Your team this season coming into the world cup is quite accomplished, Have you competed with all of them? Chris Klebl is back for his third season after producing eight World Cup podiums in '07 to finish second in the overall standings.Andy Soule (Sun Valley, Idaho), who finished fourth in his first World Cup last season is a relative newcomer and a veteran of the war in Afghanistan. Rounding out the team is Bob Balk and Sean Halstead.

Ralph - I know you won the middle distance opener at the U.S. Nationals '07 with a 23.02 over Andy Soule. Is that your best event? Are you confident that given your off season training, mental preparation and your experience in Torino that you are in a position to bring a medal home?

Greg -I've been racing with all the current team members for a while now. Chris definitely puts in the most training and gets time on snow in New Zealand and Finland over the summer/fall. Bob is a long-timer who took a year off last year because of triplets. Andy and Sean are relatively new to the team. The results from nationals don't really mean much - we're just racing amongst ourselves and sometimes not everybody is in the race (Chris was not in the middle distance race last year). My favorite race is the 15K (long distance) but I had my best result ever (1st) in the sprint at the final World Cup race last year.

Ralph - The season opener, a season of 13 events starts New Years Day in Park City, Utah. Which venues and events will you be competing in. The event that has the highest profile is the X Games in Colorado, it's not your nordic event but mono-skier X. Will you be participating in that?

Greg - We don't start racing until the first week of January in Houghton, Michigan. We then have World Cups scheduled in Germany, Finland and Norway. Unfortunately, our on-snow camp in Canmore, Canada scheduled for Thanksgiving week had to be cancelled for lack of snow. We'll try to make it up in December but things don't look too promising. I won't make the X Games because my schedule is pretty tight as it is but it would be fun to go one year - I do downhill ski but doubt I could keep up with those guys.

Keep it up Greg! I'll be routing on you and the team to bring home the gold bacon

Rollingpix


--

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Not trying hard enough

Posted by Ralph | 8:57 AM



After a couple of months away I finally put up a post, that was three weeks ago. I have been half assing around with this article on the 2007 NEC Wheelchair Masters Series championship but now I have to do all kinds of research and I'm rusty, and lazy, and nervous.

I had my hands in so many fires I just need to reorganize. Make some lists of sites to post on and do those at set times on set days. The biggest obstacle is just getting back through all of my research and figuring it out again, it will all work out.

In the meantime I'll just plug away.

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It's great to be back

Posted by Ralph | 10:19 AM

After nearly three months of being away from the web and Rollingpix... I am really happy to be posting again. I just needed some time to collect myself and re-organize things, personally and professionally.

That being said I got an email from Jen French about her success at the World Disabled Sailing Championships and where her and her team are going in preparation for the Paralympics in China.

She sent me this email on the 2nd of this month "After two back to back World Championships (IFDS Worlds in Rochester, NY and the Sonar Open Worlds in Marblehead, MA), we are happy with our performance on the boat. We took some time to rest this week. Now, we are headed back up north to Newport, RI. Starting on Oct 5th, we will be competing in the Paralympic Trials in the Sonar class. For each boat class, the winner gains a ticket to Quindao, China to compete at the 2008 Paralympic Games.

On Oct 8th, there will be cameras on all Sonars and commentary from Gary Jobson. Hopefully our cameras will have muted microphones.

This will be a fun event. Thanks for everyone support along the way."

You can read my interview with Jen in the left sidebar of this page.

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XV Pan-American games Rio De Janeiro 2007

Posted by Ralph | 3:43 PM


The fifteenth Pan American Games athletic competition has started in beautiful Rio De Janeiro, Brazil, and over the next sixteen days 5,562 athletes from all over the Americas will be competing in the last major events leading up to Beijing in 2008.

Even though the event is only in it second day the Americans are already showing alot of very promising results. Nine gold medals, four silver and two bronzes.

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2007 a great year for wheelchair tennis

Posted by Ralph | 10:45 AM

2007 has been a fantastic year for the wheelchair tennis circuit and it's athletes. Two major tournaments opened it's facilities to the tennis players of the ITF. This year saw both the French Open and the hallowed grass courts of Wimbledon open their courts and facilities to the top wheelchair tennis players in the world.

In an amazing turn of events on the clay courts of the French Open Stephane Houdet (a Frenchman) secured his first major title with a win over world #1 Shingo Kunieda. On the womens side Esther Vergeer predictably beat the Frenchwoman Florence Gravellier, continuing her unbelievable win streak.

The grass courts at Wimbledon also saw their first sets of wheels this year. Robin Ammerlaan and Ronald Vink defeated the #1 doubles team of Shingo Kunieda and Satoshi Saida in three sets 4-6 7-5 6-2

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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – Jessica Galli (Savoy, Ill.), Tatyana McFadden (Clarksville, Md.) and Amanda McGrory (Champaign, Ill.) qualified Saturday to race on one of track & field’s biggest stages, the 2007 International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) World Championships in Osaka, Japan.

The trio advanced after finishing in the top-eight in the 1500-meter qualifying race at the inaugural Boiling Point Wheelchair Track Classic in Windsor, Ontario, Canada.
Ten athletes will compete in the women’s exhibition event in Osaka on Sept. 1, with the U.S. having the most competitors in the field.

U.S. Paralympics Track & Field Head Coach Troy Engle (Colorado Springs, Colo.) pointed to a combination of factors for why the women are performing so well.

The good quality coaching and the environment at the University of Illinois have really helped Jessica and Amanda to become stronger and stronger,” Engle said. “All three have taken a very professional approach to their training. They’ve got great coaches with high levels of expertise, so I feel it’s only fitting that they’re at the highest levels of track and field based on their approach to the sport and the guidance they’re receiving.”

Osaka will also host a men’s 1500m exhibition event, but there will be no U.S. athletes competing, as Jordan Bird (Wichita, Kan.) and Josh George (Champaign, Ill.) narrowly missed the cut in the qualifier at Windsor.

The Boiling Point event also saw McFadden post a world record time in the T54 200m, pending approval from the International Paralympic Committee (IPC). The 18-year-old finished with a time of 28.33 seconds, edging out Canada’s Chantal Petitclerc, the former record holder if McFadden's time stands.

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U.S. Paralympian sets World Shot Put record

Posted by Ralph | 11:34 AM

MARIETTA, Ga. – Paralympic hopeful Scott Winkler (Grovetown, Ga.) set a new world record in the men’s F54 shot put with a throw of 10.01m at the 2007 U.S. Paralympics Track & Field National Championships. The distance automatically qualifies Winkler as a member of the U.S. Paralympics Track & Field National Team, making him the first Iraq war veteran to make the team.

“I just want to do my best,” said Winkler. “I believed and achieved my goals. If you believe, you can do anything you want, and my end goal is to get to Beijing next year and win a medal.”

Winkler was injured in Tikrit, Iraq in 2003 while serving in the U.S. Army. He fell off of an ammunition truck and sustained a T-3, T-4 spinal cord injury which resulted in paraplegia.

The previous world record distance of 9.76m was held by Markku Niinimaki of Finland, set at the 2006 IPC Athletics World Championships.

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July 6, 2007

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo.– U.S. Paralympics Track and Field National Team members took home five of 12 world records set at the 2007 Meet in the Heat wheelchair competition in Atlanta, Ga., June 28-29.

Among these are Jessica Galli (Savoy, Ill.) with three new world records in the women’s T53 division in the 200, 400, and 800m races and Josh George (Champaign, Ill.) with the world record in the men’s T53 800m.

“The recent performances are proof of the synergy and commitment of talented athletes, great coaching and an excellent training environment,” said Troy Engle, Head Coach, U.S. Paralympic Track & Field National Team.

Galli finished the 400m with a time of 55.42 topping her own record time of 55.82, which she set at the Swiss Series in June. In the 200m she won with a time of 29.51 and in the 800m, finished in 1:49.82.

The previous world record in the 200m was 29.66 set by Tanni Grey-Thompson (Great Britain) in 2004. Thompson also held the record in 800m with 1:55.12 set in 1996.

George broke the record set by Heinz Frei of Switzerland with a time of 1:37.94. Frei’s time was set at 1:38.02 in 1997.

“It was the second time I broke a record – but this time I didn’t expect it,” said George. “When I started out the race I was a little tight for the first 300 meters or so before I felt comfortable, and when I came across the line and they said I got the record I was shocked.”

Both athletes have been nominated to the team that will compete at the 2007 Parapan American Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, August 12-19.

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Handicap Dance Competition - Watch more free videos

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MARIETTA, Ga. – U.S. Paralympian Jeff Skiba (Chula Vista, Calif./Sammamish, Wash.) set a new men’s F44 high jump world record Friday at the 2007 U.S. Paralympics Track & Field National Championships in Marietta, Georgia

Skiba, a 23-year-old Paralympic resident athlete at the Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista, Calif., received a standing ovation from spectators after jumping 2.10m in the long jump, bettering his previous world record of 2.09m which has stood since 2002.

When asked about his performance, Skiba remarked, “I think I’m in better shape this year. I’ve put a lot more time and concentration into my training, and I just feel really confident. I know I can still go higher.”

In February of 2007, Skiba became the first male Paralympic athlete to qualify for and compete in the Track & Field Indoor National Championships against able-bodied athletes.

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AFK...... In physical therapy center

Posted by Ralph | 7:22 PM

I'm going to be afk for awhile. I'm in a physical therapy center wokring on dressing and transfering skills. I will post as I can but it wont be regularly

There's a lot going on in wheel chair sports for the rest of the suumer and i'll do my best to cover what I can but it wont be regularly.

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27th National Veterans Wheelchair Games

Posted by Ralph | 8:56 AM


500 hundred disabled American heroes will converge on Milwaukee June 19 – 23 to test their agility, athleticism and strength of spirit in the 27th National Veterans Wheelchair Games, the largest annual wheelchair sports event in the world. Veterans from the recent conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq will again join veterans from the Gulf War, Vietnam and other conflicts in 17 competitive events.

At the Games, veterans will compete in track and field, swimming, basketball, weightlifting, softball, air guns, quad rugby, 9-ball, bowling, table tennis, archery, handcycling, a motorized rally, wheelchair slalom, a power wheelchair relay and power soccer. Trap shooting and wheelchair curling will be exhibition events this year. Sports are important in the therapy used to treat many disabilities. For many injured veterans, the Wheelchair Games provide their first exposure to wheelchair athletics.

For more info on the games go to their website here.

You can also look at a full photo gallery here.

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Jessica Galli

Posted by Ralph | 6:47 AM

U.S. PARALYMPICS: Galli Sets World Record at Swiss Series

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

June 12, 2007

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – Two-time U.S. Paralympian Jessica Galli (Savoy, Ill./Hillsborough, N.J.) set a new world record in the women’s wheelchair (T53) 400m at the 2007 European Wheelchair Championships Swiss Selection Meet World Series, June 7 in Pratteln, Switzerland.

Galli finished the 400m race with a time of 55.82 defeating the previous world record set by Tanni Grey-Thompson of Great Britain with a time of 56.28 in 2003.

“I’m really excited and it’s a great honor,” said Galli. “I feel like it’s a confirmation of all the hard work I’ve been putting in over the last two years − I’ve been concentrating on the sprint and I guess it’s been paying off.”

On breaking Tanni-Grey-Thompson’s record, Galli said, “It’s a little bittersweet to break her record but I see it is a sign that we are moving on. She’s retired and the next generation is coming up."


"Jessica has established herself among top racers in the world," said National Team coach Kevin Orr. "Jessica's performance speaks well of her preparations towards Beijing and is a good step with the Paralympic Games fourteen months ago.

Up next: Galli will be competing at the 2007 U.S.\Paralympics Track and Field National Championships, June 30-July 2 in Marietta, Ga.

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No posts today

Posted by Ralph | 7:36 AM

I'm working on Rollingtravel wheelchair accessible vacation site today, sorry folks

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In my first post that is actually ahead of the ITF, Shingo Kunieda, the World's number 1 singles player defeated the Dutch Robin Aamerlaam 6-3,6-4. Shingo is so strong I anticipate him having a great year and if he stays at this pace maybe even surpass the legendary David Hall. In 2007 he is 16-1 in singles, and 13 and 0 in doubles

On the womens side Esther Vergeer uncharacteristically lost the second set in a tie break to Florence Gravellier. The other two sets were vintage domination, 6-3 in the first, and a triple break in the third 6-2 increasing her already tennis hall of fame career

I consider her right up there with Lance Armstrong as one of the best, most dominant athletes in the history of sport

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Photo:ITF Tennis


The 1st annual French Open on the red clay of Roland Garros started yesterday. Lucy Shuker bageled Karin Suter-Erath 6-0 6-0 for her biggest win in Series one competition and as usual the juggernaut Esther Vergeer is rolling over her opponents. I don't dare say competition because frankly there just isn't any for her.

As far as the men's side is concerned there are some discrepancies on the ITF website. The ITF says
"The home French fans will have a local player to cheers in Thursday's Men's Singles semi-finals after Parisian Michael Jeremiasz (FRA) won the big points to see of Tadeusz Kruszelnicki (POL) 63 63. Jeremiasz will face Martin Legner (AUT) in the final after the evergreen Austrian outplayed Ben Weekes (AUS) in the other quarter-final to score a 61 61 victory.The home French fans will have a local player to cheers in Thursday's Men's Singles semi-finals after Parisian Michael Jeremiasz (FRA) won the big points to see of Tadeusz Kruszelnicki (POL) 63 63. Jeremiasz will face Martin Legner (AUT) in the final after the evergreen Austrian outplayed Ben Weekes (AUS) in the other quarter-final to score a 61 61 victory. "

To correct it Michael beat Tadeusz in the quarters played, and lost to Robin Ammerlam in the Semi's, and Martin Legner beat Ben Weekes in the quarters, and loast to world #1 Shingo Kunieda in the other semi-final. So with Martin Legner loosing in the quarters and Michael Jeremiasz in the Semi's how are they going to play in the final?

The final will be Robin Aamerlam and Shingo Kunieda

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From US Paralympics

What: 8th annual UCO Endeavor Games for Athletes with Physical Disabilities

Description: The Endeavor Games will be held this weekend, with a record-breaking attendance of more than 350 sport participants. Twenty-seven states will be represented as well as the countries of Panama and Mexico. Competition will be held in ten different sports over a 3-day period beginning Friday, June 8 and ending Sunday, June 10, all at the University of Central Oklahoma (UCO) and Edmond Public Schools. In addition, sport clinics, presented by the U.S. Paralympics, will be held on Thursday, June 7.

DAILY HIGHLIGHTS

Thursday, June 7:

The 2007 Sport Clinics will be presented by U.S. Paralympics, a division of the U.S. Olympic Committee. National Team coaches and athletes will lead participants through instruction in the following Paralympic Sports: Archery, Boccia, Powerlifting, Shooting, Table Tennis and Track & Field. Over 60 aspiring athletes have signed up to participate in the sport clinics and receive instruction from the best of the best.

In addition, UCO Endeavor Games is pleased to partner once more with Disabled Sports USA and the Wounded Warriors Project to welcome our nation’s protectors as they realize their potential as athletes. These special guests are members of the U.S. Military Services who have received permanent physically disabling injuries while serving for the United States of America in the Global War on Terrorism. A record number 28 soldiers will be attending the event, to participate in the clinics and then to compete throughout the weekend.

Friday, June 8:

Outdoor archery (9am, Cheyenne Middle School) and powerlifting (10am, UCO Hamilton Field House) will begin the sport competition for the day. Powerlifting will serve as the National Powerlifting Championships and will feature numerous national team athletes, including Kortney Clemons, a solider injured in the war in Iraq. In addition, wheelchair basketball will be conducted throughout the day at UCO’s Wellness Center. The basketball competition is a 3-on-3 format, and will feature competition for juniors and adults. Table Tennis will round out the sport competition for the day and will also be held in the Wellness Center, beginning at 1pm.

To complete the evening, an Opening Ceremony will be staged at 7:30 p.m. at UCO’s Hamilton Field House. Two-time Paralympian Karin Korb, will serve as keynote speaker for the ceremonies. Korb is among the top four women wheelchair tennis players in the world and was the first wheelchair athlete to defeat an able-bodied opponent. Presented by Chickasaw Nation & a Centennial Event, opening ceremonies will also feature Indian dancers, a Parade of Athletes, and a tribute to the U.S. soldiers.

Saturday, June 9:

Saturday will begin with an amazing skydiving demonstration by double-amputee Dana Bowman at 8:00 a.m. at Edmond North High School. Track competition will then start at 8:30 a.m. and is once again the most populated sport with healthy competition in each of the four disabilities. Track will feature numerous Paralympic athletes who are preparing for the 2008 Paralympic Games in Beijing, China. Also in attendance will be five-year old amputee Payton Hofmeyer of Plano, TX in his first ever competition. Wheelchair tennis will be held at Edmond North’s tennis courts at 9:30 a.m. Shooting (9am, UCO Wellness Center) and outdoor archery (9am, Cheyenne Middle School) will also be held on Saturday. The archery competition will feature athletes on the National Archery Team, including Edmond’s own T.J. Pemberton who is aspiring to attend the 2008 Paralympic Games.

Sunday, June 10:

The conclusion of the track events will start the day with the 5000m scheduled for 8:00 a.m. at Edmond North High School. Boccia will then be held at the Wellness Center, UCO at 9:00 a.m. The second largest sport in the Endeavor Games, swimming, will be conducted throughout the morning at UCO’s Hamilton Field House. Swimming will feature a record 50 athletes competing in a variety of strokes.

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Amputee athlete aims for Olympics
By Orla Guerin
BBC Africa correspondent

Pistorius made his international debut at the 2004 Paralympics
Three years ago Oscar Pistorius had never stepped onto a track, let alone run a race.

Today he is an athletics sensation - holder of world records in the 100m, 200m and 400m events.

His coach, Ampie Louw, says Oscar is "a natural champion - born that way".

The 20-year-old South African is one of a handful of runners around the globe who could make the Olympic qualifying time. He is less than a second away.

But Oscar's Olympic bid is like no other - he is a double amputee.

'Blade runner'

At birth he was missing bones below the knee.

After his legs were removed, at the age of one, he learnt to walk on prosthetics, and he believes this pushed him to excel.


Pistorius will compete at next month's Paralympic World Cup

He has done everything from quad biking to water skiing. He took up athletics as rehabilitation for a rugby injury.

On the track, they call him "blade runner" - thanks to his carbon fibre prosthetics, custom-made in Iceland.

He and his blades, called Cheetahs, have run into sporting history, and into controversy.

He has been dogged by claims that the blades give him an extra long stride - something he denies.

The manufacturers, Ossur, say the blades are "passive devices", which lag way behind what biological legs can do.

They insist the Cheetahs are not performance-enhancing, but simply give amputee athletes a fighting chance.

Winning ingredient

Oscar says he is the winning ingredient, not the blades.

SPRINT COMPARISONS
400m times (in secs):
46.56 - Pistorius world record
47.8 - 1928 Olympic gold
44.00 - 2004 Olympic gold
200m times:
21.58 - Pistorius world record
22.0 - 1920 Olympic gold
19.79 - 2004 Olympic gold
100m times:
10.91 - Pistorius world record
11.2 - 1906 Olympic gold
9.85 - 2004 Olympic gold

He is outrunning single amputees using the Cheetahs.

"I train harder than any of the other guys do," he says.

"I put in more hours. I eat better. I sleep better. I rest better and, overall, I am more diligent."

He has just shown what he can do against able-bodied athletes.

In South Africa's National Championships in Durban last month, he came in second.

"I don't see myself as disabled, and I think it's the guy that wants to win the hardest that's gets it," he explains.

Oscar's next challenge is the Visa Paralympic World Cup in Manchester next month, but he is looking ahead to Beijing in 2008.

Olympic hopes

One of Britain's sporting heroes, former world record holder Colin Jackson, says he should be given the chance.


There's never been a disabled athlete running in the Olympics - there's fear of change

Oscar Pistorius

"I think it's a great idea, if he makes it as the first paralympian," he told BBC News.

"He's one of these guys who is a genuine athlete. And he's young enough to not only make 2008, but to compete also in 2012, which would be really sensational."

But the world body governing athletics, the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF), has already moved to block him from the Olympics, with a new ruling banning "technical aids".

Senior officials have "suspicions" about his performance on the Cheetahs.

Oscar says his critics are only looking at the advantages of the blades - "if there are any" - and not the disadvantages.

"There's never been a disabled athlete running in the Olympics," he says.

"There's a fear of change."

Oscar believes some people just do not like the competition, but he says he will keep chasing his dream

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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – Forty-eight student-athletes with physical disabilities and 25 coaches will come to the U.S. Olympic Training Center (OTC) in Colorado Springs next Friday for the 2007 National Paralympic Academy, June 1-4.

The students will participate in sports training sessions with U.S. Paralympians, a VIP tour of the OTC, and they will also spend the weekend being mentored by Olympic and Paralympic athletes.

“The National Paralympic Academy is a great opportunity to introduce children with physical disabilities to Paralympic sport,” said Charlie Huebner, Chief of U.S. Paralympics. “In addition to sports, these students work closely with Paralympic athletes who act as mentors and help them realize all that is possible.”

Featured sports at the training sessions will include goalball, judo, volleyball and wheelchair basketball.

Coaches will learn more about how to promote Paralympic sport in their communities, as well as the importance of physical activity among children with physical disabilities.

2007 National Paralympic Academy Student Roster

Richard Beck (Wasilla, Alaska)
Ally Beischer (Anchorage, Alaska)
Samuel Blakely (Henefer, Utah)
David Brown (Hazelwood, Mo.)
Logan Burke (Omaha, Neb.)
Kelsey Butler (Allen, Texas)
Nehemiah Cameron (Chattaroy, Wash.)
Thomas Carroll (Glenview, Ill.)
Tyler Carter (Topton, Pa.)
Colin Cutter (Piedmont, Okla.)
Sawyer Elkins (Bloomington, Ind.)
Ace Finch (Council Grove, Kan.)
Dylan Fischbach (Vermillion, S.D.)
Elizabeth Flora-Swick (Gardner, Kan.)
John Gardner (Spokane, Wash.)
Trevon Graves (St. Louis, Mo.)
Brynn Haines (St. Louis, Mo.)
John Hairston-Abbott (Colorado Springs, Colo.)
Tyler Halatek (Reedsburg, Wis.)
Jonathan Heider (Green Bay, Wis.)
Eric Holzthum (Bethlehem, N.H.)
Cole Hunter (Merrimac, Mass.)
Kelsie Kellen (O’Fallon, Mo.)
Robert Layman (Silt, Colo.)
Jessica Lindsay (Inverness, Ill.)
Chris Madden (Austin, Texas)
Chelsea McClammer (Benton, Wash.)
Michael McHugh (Cortlandt Manor, N.Y.)
Tyler Pickett (St. Paul, Mo.)
Lisa Penoyer (Dacula, Ga.)
Miguel Reyes (Colorado Springs, Colo.)
Cathryn Reynolds (Philadelphia, Pa.)
Anthony Rogers (Austin, Texas)
Adam Rose (Macomb, Mich.)
Joshua Ruoff (Topeka, Kan.)
Luke Russell (Verona, Wis.)
Adam Saladana (Oklahoma City, Okla.)
Tristan Salvadori (Wilmington, Del.)
Roderick Sewell (Fairfield, Ala.)
Matthew Simpson (Smyrna, Ga.)
Jonathan Taylor (Round Rock, Texas)
Arturo Torres (San Antonio, Texas)
Ian Trollinger (San Diego, Calif.)
Kristy Vaughn (Corry, Pa.)
Amberlynn Weber (Greenacres, Wash.)
Ellaun Williams (St. Louis, Mo.)
Jasper Wilson (Troy, N.Y.)
John Wise (Menlo Park, Calif.)

Coaches Roster

Diane Barras (Waterford, Maine)
Marilyn Blakely (Henefer, Utah)
Rebecca Boyce (Gaylord, Mich.)
Mary Bozzone (Brooklyn, N.Y.)
Claudia Brewer (Sterling Heights, Mich.)
Jeffery Brown (Albany, Ga.)
Thomas Carr (Durham, N.H.)
Timothy Cobb (Imperial, Mo.)
Jacinda Danner (Palmer, Alaska)
Marc DePerno (Deerfield, N.Y.)
Donald Dew (Lake Placid, N.Y.)
Jeff Dick (Anchorage, Alaska)
Pamela Greene (Chester, N.Y.)
Heather Grunwald (Anchorage, Alaska)
Beverly Jackson (Austin, Texas)
Tom Kersey (Newport, N.H.)
Anne Krupp (Fostoria, Ohio)
Donna Niethe (Wayne, N.J.)
Peggy O’Neill (Woodland Hills, Calif.)
Glen O’Sullivan (Zion, Ill.)
Donna Santiago (Wilmington, N.Y.)
Hal Simpson (Smyrna, Ga.)
Thomas H. Southall (Aurora, Colo.)
Kaiti Stapleton (Chicago, Ill.)
Robyn Stawski (Tampa, Fla.)

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Photos courtesy of Greg Mallory

Greg Mallory is, among other thing, a lawyer, L1 Paraplegic, white water kayaker and Captain of the U.S.Disabled Nordic Ski Team, a post that he was nominated for by the other members of the team. He has been in the chair 13 years, kayaking 12 of those, and is the 1st disabled person, in a group of 1st people, to conquer the remote Mangde Chu river in the
Himalayan region of Bhutan.

These 1st peoples trip was broadcast on the Discovery Channel and was aptly named "Adventure Bhutan," I had no idea about Greg's involvement, but I did have every intent of watching the program anyway. I like those kind of shows, so imagine my surprise when the expeditions leader and trip organizer announced "paralympic and paraplegic athlete Greg Mallory."

If my neck wasn't already fused I probably would have needed it after my head snapped around to face the television. The documentary was awesome, As I said in the last paragraph, he was the first para to navigate the Mangde Chu, and after a few emails to find him I got a short telephone conference. It was really cool that I was able to ask him some questions, one person in a chair to another.

Ralph: How did you get involved with "Adventure Bhutan?"

Greg: Two of my teammates were friends of mine, Brooke and rookie Will Hovey. I met Gerry Moffatt, the expedition's leader, a few years back and when I got his email asking if I wanted to be involved..... well the answer is obvious.

Ralph: Bhutan has some ridicilous topography, seeing you getting dragged in your kayak to the put in was kind of cool. Your position on the team was alot of responsibility. Safety Kayaker, being responsible for others, that's a big deal.

Greg: The Himalaya's aren't an easy place to travel, and it is certainly a sense of accomplishment.

Ralph: Getting back to the river.... There were a few places on the trip when the river wasn't run, places that one of your teammates described as "50-50 at best." The documentary completley leaves you out at these points. They are called "Portage" and required lots of climbing and walking. That oviously isn't happening, and how much dragging was done?

Greg: It definitely doesn't come across on the show how difficult it was. It felt like they made less out of the logistics than there was. There was a point, I was on a horse, a small himalayan style horse, and the horse's leader didn't seem concerned. We were going up a steep trail, I was hanging on for dear life.

Ralph: I bet some of the people of Bhutan had never seen a person in a chair. In the documentary some of your teammates went into this amazing Buddhist temple, the temple had some crucial stairs and ladders, and again there was no mention of your experience. Did you get a chance to go in any of those temples?

Greg: Yeah it was obvious that some of the people of Bhutan had never seen a wheelchair, it is an immensely isolated country. Bhutan's culture and their people are very humble so there wasn't any feeling I was a "freak show", and yes I went inside the temples, some of the boys (my teammates) carried me up the stairs.

Ralph: Towards the end of the documentary there was a class 5 rapid, and it was pretty obvious nerves were playing a part in your decision to run it or not.

Greg: Not many people in a chair boat, and I was the 3rd person, and the 1st para to ever do that section of river. It wasn't the hardest section of river I have done, but it was humbling and very fulfiling to be the 1st disabled person.

Ralph: What's the deal with your position and the responsibilities as Captain of the U.S Disabled Nordic Ski Team?

Greg: Not too much right now. It's the off season for skiing and I'm just training cardiovascular and strength. The World Cup is in the beginning of 2008 and as that gets closer my training will be more ski specific. Mostly it is just communicating with the coaches and team members.

Ralph: How about some of our options in the future to get up and walk again. I mean "stem cells or cyborgs." If you had your choice which would you pick?

Greg: Stem Cells definitely. I don't know alot about cyborg technology, it's not something I look into regularly.

Ralph: I understand that. Cyborg technology and robitics is kindof an obsession of mine. Did you know there is an exoskeleton built in Japan that nearly summitted the Matterhorn with a quadriplegic? It's based on bio-feedback sleeves that the user puts their limbs in and then a computer interprets their muscle signatures, amplifying them with batteries and outputting the amplified signal to motors built into the joints of the exoskeletons frame. Maybe it's a little crazy but that's the route I would go.

Greg: No I had no idea about that. I went to the Miami Project shortly after my injury for therapy and bio-feedback so it's definitely interesting.

Ralph: When you dream are you in or out of the chair? For me even if I'm out of the chair it's always present, somewhere in my field of vision.

Greg: For me, in my dreams I'm either in or out of the chair. It's one way or another.

Ralph: Any plans for other adventures coming up?

Greg: I'm probably going to Idaho for a kayaking trip. Other than that just lots of kayaking, multi day training and staying in shape.

Ralph: Thank you for taking the time to do this interview with me.

Greg: It was my pleasure, take care.


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AMPUTEE ON THE TODAY SHOW update

Posted by Ralph | 5:02 PM | , ,

Photo U.S Paralympics


Be sure to tune-in to NBC’s Today Show tomorrow, Wednesday, May 16th at 7:30 a.m. EASTERN TIME for a story focusing on the pros and cons of prosthetics in sport. U.S. Paralympian Jeff Skiba (Chula Vista, Calif./Issaquah, Wash.) will talk about his success in the sport of track & field, including winning at silver medal at the 2004 Paralympic Games and becoming the first Paralympic athlete to compete in the able-bodied Track & Field Indoor National Championships. Again, that’s 7:30 a.m. Eastern Time!

For scheduling reasons, the story on U.S. Paralympian Jeff Skiba (Chula Vista, Calif./Issaquah, Wash.) that was supposed to air this morning on NBC’s Today Show was postponed. It has been rescheduled to air tomorrow, Thursday, May 17th in the first hour of the show – roughly 7:18 a.m.

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Wheelchair Tennis - Stephen Welch, Men's Former World #1 wins first title since 2005


International Paralympics - Canadian Athlete Kimberley Joines suspended for doping violation. IPC says "Joines tested positive for carboxylic acid metabolite of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (at a concentration greater than 15 ng/ml) at the 2007 IPC Alpine Skiing World Cup in Aspen, USA, on 17 January 2007. The substance is included in the 2007 Prohibited List and consequently prohibited under the IPC Anti-Doping Code, which has adopted the World Anti-Doping Code (WADC)."

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Rugby, Tennis, and more

Posted by bucky | 3:36 PM | , , ,

Denver Harlequins: Against the Odds


No one expected them to make it to D-I. No one expected them to make it to the finals. No one expected them to win. But the Harlequins didn't care what people expected! Read about their tough 47-45 win over the Lakeshore Demolition here.




NEW ITF Wheelchair Tour Event


Joining the likes of Roland Garros, the US Open, Wimbledon, and the Australian Open, the Rome WTA Tour event will be adding an exhibition wheelchair tennis tournament. The tournament will be on May 19 and will be between Peter Wikstrom(SWE), Stefan Olsson(SWE), Fabian Mazzei(ITA), and Martin Legner(AUT). It sounds like the sport of wheelchair tennis is really growing, being backed by the entire industry. Here's what President Binaghi had to say about the news, "Exactly as it happens in the four most important tournaments of the world, there is a wheelchair tennis exhibition event. In this way, Rome will play a great role not only for the Italian tennis movement but also for global wheelchair tennis."

Also on a more personal note, the Atlanta Open starts today. My friend and wheelchair tennis coach Greg Taylor, will be competing in the Quad events. I will be giving a full review of the tournament early next week so check back and see how Greg does.



The Ex starts this Friday

Starring Zach Braff, Amanda Peet, and Jason Bateman.

Tom just wants his wife Sophia to be happy. Chip however, just wants Tom's wife. Chip, a paraplegic, is hell bent on winning back his high school lady. I've only seen the trailer but the movie looks hilarious. Click here to watch some trailers.

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The 2000 Sydney, Australia paralympics were what I think should be the model for all future Paralympic Events. An unbelievable 1.4 million tickets were sold at $10.00 for an all day, all event pass. That amount more than doubled the Paralympic Events of Atlanta's sales.

Even more amazing was that the wheelchair tennis outsold the a/b's! There were many matches with attendance of 7 -10,000. That's cool...... predictably David Hall and Esther Vergeer won golds.

Here is the coolest part.."Bonn, Germany – The third Visa Paralympic World Cup will not only excite spectators at the competition venues. For the first time, sports fans around the world can watch top quality BBC footage of one of Paralympic Sports’ biggest annual events on the International Paralympic Committee’s (IPC) internet television channel.

The 2008 Paralympics will be televised on the internet. You can watch it on Paralympic Sport here.

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Amputee Dancing

Posted by Ralph | 3:36 PM | ,

Man this guy can samba! And the girl is hot too...

One Leg - Click here for this week’s top video clips

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I know the header is funny

Posted by Ralph | 12:02 PM

Working on getting it fixed........The headless chairman! It's Wheelabod Crane! AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH

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The story of Clay Dyer is almost too much to be able to put into words. He was born with no legs, no left arm, and only a partial right arm. Clay not only lives a normal life, he lives the life of a professional bass fisherman. He uses his mouth to tie his lures to his line. He uses his chin to cast out and reel in the big ones. He is the epitomy of determination and will. He is truly an inspiration to all of us, disabled or not. He is proof that no matter what your situation, you can stil chase down those dreams. So watch this video and go chase down YOUR dream!


Video of Clay Dyer from ESPN.com

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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – The United States Olympic Committee (USOC) presented its 2006 Coach of the Year honorees at a luncheon held today in collaboration with the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports at the Hilton Washington Embassy Row in Washington, D.C.
The USOC also presented awards to the 2006 SportsMan, SportsWoman, Paralympian, and Team of the Year honorees.

Swimming was in the spotlight for the two Paralympic awards, as Julie O'Neill (Colorado Springs, Colo.) was named USOC Paralympic Coach of the Year, while Jessica Long (Baltimore, Md.) received her USOC Paralympian of the Year award, which had previously been announced.

O’Neill, head coach of the 2006 U.S. Paralympics Swimming National Team, led the U.S. team that won the overall medal count at the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) Swimming World Championships in Durban, South Africa. It was the first time the U.S. had won the medal count at an IPC World Championships or Paralympic Games in the sport of swimming. Twenty of the 25 athletes on the roster finished with at least one medal, and three of the five who did not medal had at least one fourth-place finish.

The other finalists for Paralympic Coach of the Year were James Gumbert (wheelchair rugby/Austin, Texas) and Ron Lykins (wheelchair basketball/Stillwater, Minn.).

Long played a major role in helping O'Neill build that medal count in Durban, winning gold medals in all nine events (seven individual, two relay) she competed in and setting five world records (100m freestyle, 100m butterfly, 200m IM, 400m freestyle and freestyle relay). The World Championships capped off a year for Long that included 11 other world record-setting times, including three at the 2006 U.S. Paralympics Swimming National Championships in August. She is Swimming World’s 2006 Disabled Swimmer of the Year and was named a finalist for the Women’s Sports Foundation’s Sportswoman of the Year. She was recently awarded the AAU James Sullivan Award as the nation’s premier amateur athlete.

Other honorees announced today for 2006 Coach of the Year are National Coach of the Year Bud Keene (U.S. Ski and Snowboard/Stowe, Vt.), Developmental Coach of the Year Mark Mitchell and Peter Johansson (U.S. Figure Skating/Wellesley, Mass.), Volunteer Coach of the Year Booker Woods (USA Track & Field/Los Angeles, Calif.) and “Doc” Counsilman award winner Kat Arbour (U.S. Figure Skating/Philadelphia, Pa.).

Announced in January 2007, the other honorees for the 2006 USOC athlete awards are SportsMan of the Year Joey Cheek (long track speedskating/Greensboro, N.C), SportsWoman of the Year Hannah Teter (snowboarding/Belmont, Vt.) and Team of the Year the U.S. Men’s Curling Team. The curling team comprises members Pete Fenson (Bemidji, Minn.), Shawn Rojeski (Chisholm, Minn.), Joe Polo (Cass Lake, Minn.), John Shuster (Chisholm, Minn.) and Scott Baird (Bemidji, Minn.).


Taken for U.S. Paralympics

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Almost 350 of the world's top disabled athletes from 47 countries will be in Manchester for the Visa Paralympic World Cup in May.



This is the third year of the event which will run from 7-13 May at three venues in Manchester with wheelchair basketball, cycling, swimming and athletics all featuring on the schedule.
Among the highlights will be Dame Tanni Grey-Thompson's final race before she brings the curtain down on her illustrious career.


BBC Sport gives you the lowdown on what to expect from each event.
There will be live coverage from the Paralympic World Cup on Sunday 13 May on BBC Two from 1545-1745 BST

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When Pigs Fly

Posted by bucky | 11:30 AM | , , , ,


A film about a quadraplegic woman and her 20 acre pig sanctuary. Lory Yazurlo was injured in a truck accident and now uses a power wheelchair. It is a very realistic look on her life with the muddy swine and her struggle with her former employer over her worker's compensation case. There are highs and lows, ups and downs, and the film shows all of this. It's not meant to make you feel sorry for Lory, or to glorify her as a hero. It is simply a realistic perspective on one womans struggle to deal with her situation.

Lory was always an animal lover so she was happy to get a single little pig from her sister. As her love for swine grew, so did her herd. Starting with just one, it quickly grew to hundreds that live on the 20 acre Pig Tales Sanctuary.

However, the film seems to focus just as much on Lory's mom, Charlene, as it does Lory. Much like Lory does for her muddy little friends, Charlene is the primary caretaker for Lory. The film shows her struggles to keep Lory healthy while she rides around in the muck taking care of her babies. She is also highly involved in the ridiculous struggle with CSX Corp. over Lory's worker's compensation case.

Feeding and caring for hundreds of pigs isn't cheap. The film shows Lory sinking deeper and deeper in debt and depression as she awaits her final settlement from CSX Corp., which she plans to put right into the sanctuary.


The Hollywood Reporter says: "Bottom line: An unflinching portrait of how a woman chooses to live after a devastating injury and a damning testament to the gaping holes in the workers' compensation system."

Orlando Sentinel: "Lory has this big spider living in her room, huge. [says Charlene Yazurlo, her mother] And she won't kill it. She tells me the other day, she's all excited to see this spider, the size of her fist, coming out to see her." Charlene Yazurlo chuckles at the very notion of being this committed to life, even spider life. "I don't find that exciting at all."


There are still a couple screenings coming up for this film if you are interested in seeing it.


  • Jacksonville Film Festival (May 20, 2007 @ 4pm; Jacksonville, FL)

  • Film Arts Foundation: True Stories (June 20, 2007 @ 7:30pm; San Fransisco, CA)



Official Website

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Changing templates..... AGAIN

Posted by Ralph | 3:25 PM

We are going to look a bit jacked for the next bit! I'm changing back from Doug Bowman's beautiful, but not right for here template. Firdamatic has an awesome generator for this and other 3 column template Bloggers, no widgets for blogger beta, but I did this there. No offense Doug, I just like it better.

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Motorcycles for the disabled???

Posted by bucky | 11:22 PM | , ,



Believe it or not, there are a number of ways to get back out on the open road. One of the latest is the Can-Am Spyder. It is a three wheeled bike but it is not your average trike. The Spyder is a reverse trike. It has two wheels in the front and one in the back. If it reminds you of a jet-ski or a snowmobile, it's because the company that produces them, Bombardier, is also a leading manufacturer of snowmobiles, ATVs, and Sea Doo jet-skis.

It has all of the options that someone with mobility problems would need. You have the choice of foot shift or electric push-button shifting. It has reverse for those that can't get off of the bike and push it if you get into a tight spot. Many people have problems with trikes because they have a tendency to be unstable and seem easy to flip when turning at faster speeds. But the folks at Can-Am took care of that problem too. There is a traction control system, vehicle stability system, and stability control system. These systems work together with the anti-lock braking system to keep all three tires safely on the asphalt. It also has power steering to make turns a little easier since you don't lean this bike like you would your normal two-wheeler.

/Okay...so there is plenty of safety features, where's all the fun stuff? Well Can-Am has managed to keep the fun in the bike while making it safe at the same time. It has a 1000cc engine pushing plenty of speed and torque to the back tire. So much torque that it will even manage a pretty decent burnout despite the traction control system. The Spyder may not lean into corners or split lanes but it does allow the majority of the sensations of riding a motorcycle. The wind is still a factor, the unobstructed view of the environment you are riding through is still there, and, of course, direct contact with the outside elements like the sound of the road humming under the tires and smells of coffee shops, restaurants or the sweet ocean air still reach the senses. And that is what riding is all about isn't it? Being out there, exposed to the elements and soaking in all the Mother Nature can throw our way?

The Spyder will be in the United States in the Fall of 2007 at limited dealerships. The price tag is a little steep, but when you consider all of the technology that is found on this bike compared to your cheaper options, it's really a pretty sweet deal at around $15,000. Now we just have to find somewhere to haul our chairs!

Information and photos used were from http://www.motorcycle-usa.com

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Kortney Clemons and Rohan Murphy have a lot in common. They are both students at Penn State, they are both powerlifters, they are both amputees, and they both plan on being at the 2008 Paralympic Games in Beijing, China. But theird stories are very different.

Murphy lost both of his legs when he was 3 because they were underdeveloped. Despite being a double amputee, Murphy's 8th grade gym teacher suggested that he join the school's wrestling team. Little did they know that Murphy would go on to start for his high school wrestling team. And even more surprising, he went on to wrestle at the Division I college level!

Clemons lost his right leg from the knee down in an explosion while serving as a combat medic in Iraq. He was attempting to remove a fellow soldier from an overturned vehicle when the explosion happened. After leaving the Army, Clemons was looking for some kind of sport to get into. That's when he me the Teri Jordan. Jordan is the coach for Penn State's Ability Athletics program.

Now both guys are competitive powerlifters for Penn State and hope to go all the way to the paralympics. Murphy, weighing only 125 lbs, has a max bench of 303 lbs. And Clemons' record is 325 lbs. Clemons also hopes to be competing in the 100-meter race with a personal best of 14.5 secs.

For the full story and more pictures click here.

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Tennis News

Posted by bucky | 11:03 PM | ,

The Cajun Classic was held this past weekend in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. It was no surprise that Esther Vergeer(NED) and David Wagner(USA) remain unbeaten so far this year in Women's and Quad's singles. Michael Jeremiasz(FRA) beat Stephane Houdet(FRA) to take the big points in the Men's Singles and to win his first NEC Tour title of the year. Finalists Jeremiasz and Houdet teamed up to win the Men's Doubles and finalists Vergeer and Gravellier(FRA) teamed up to take the Women's Doubles. Quad finalists Wagner and Hunter(CAN) followed the same pattern and teamed up to win the Quad Doubles.

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2007 Wheelchair Bodybuilding Nationals Results



Overall Winner- Victor Konovalov



Heavyweight


1st- Victor Konovalov

2nd- Jeffery Snell

3rd- Nick Scott

4th- Josh Dillaberry

5th- Leon Bostick

6th- John McClay

Light Heavyweight

1st- John Quinn

2nd- Jack McCann

Middle Weight

1st- Colt Wynn

2nd- Ludovic Marchand

3rd- Reggie Bennett

Light Weight
1st- Greg Grose

2nd- Jesse McKinny

3rd- Patrick Laugerude

Novice

1st- Andre Hunt

2nd- Frank Trovato

3rd- Ken Rivera

Masters

1st- Jack McCann

2nd- Andre Hunt

3rd- Frank Travato

4th- Ken Rivera

5th- John McClay



For more information and photos click here.

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"Germany's Martin Braxenthaler was the toast of the 2006 Paralympic Winter Games in Turin after he took gold medals in three of the four Alpine skiing disciplines – Slalom, Giant Slalom and Super G. As well in 2006 he was the winner of the overall World Cup, the World Cup Slalom and was German champion in Slalom and Giant Slalom. In a glittering Olympic career he also won a clean sweep of four Alpine gold medals in the 2002 Paralympics in Salt Lake City and a bronze in Nagano in the Super G. His successes over the years, both in and out of Olympic competition, have made him the most successful mono-skier in the history of the Paralympic movement. His roll of honour includes overall World Cup titles in 2001, 2002, 2003, 2005, as well as 2006, and two gold medals and a silver medal in both the 2000 and 2004 World Championships. Braxenthaler, who became paraplegic after an accident at work, has become a great role model for young athletes who benefit from his knowledge and skill."

Photo and text copyright of Laureus Awards

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Paralympics Heading to the US?

Posted by bucky | 11:49 AM | ,

Chicago chosen as the United States' applicant city for the 2016 Olympic and Paralympic games. Let's keep our fingers crossed! (Read More)

US Quad Rugby Association is holding it's annual Post Season Auction. The auction ends this Sunday, the 22nd. Some of the items up for auction include 3 rugby chairs, wheels, and more! Get some new gear and support Quad Rugby while you're at it!(Check it out!)

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Self Defense

Posted by bucky | 11:15 PM | , , , ,

With all of the violence that has happened on the Virgina Tech campus this week, it got me to thinking about what I would do in a situation like that. Is there anything that I could do to keep from being a "sitting target?"

I found that there is an entire self defense program created and taught by a guy in a chair. Master Jurgen Schmidt founded the International Disabled Self-Defense Association in 1996. He developed the "Defense-Ability" system of self defense which is a modified version of the martial art Combat Hapkido. ( Read More )

I also found the story of Clay Johnson, a martial artist with cerebral palsy. He was picked on for his disability as a child. He finally found someone to teach him American Freestyle Karate and his life changed from that day on. Now he is a member of the American Freestyle Karate Association's Hall of Fame. ( Read More )

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Wheelchair Sports Updates 4/12/07

Posted by Ralph | 1:54 PM

I have a great batch of links today. Amputee Mountain Climbers, Paraplegic Skydiving and more. Enjoy


> Double amputee summits Mt. Everest

> Russell is a paraplegic base jumper! Check out his site with pix and a couple of killer videos. (link)

> Wheelchair Tennis - Vergeer, Kunieda and Wagner clinch titles at the Florida Open open.

>Kunieda def. Saida 6-2, 6-3

>Vergeer def. Griffioen 6-1, 6-1

>Wagner def. Norfolk 4-6,6-3, 6-2\

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Man this is cool! "Talk about extreme sports! Amputee ice climber Warren Macdonald, and mono-skier Felix Snow slug it out sitting down! " - Wheelchair Boxing

Check out this standing/driving frame for golf - Paragolfer . Link to their site

Mr. Mahesh. "I can dance...... without legs!" (video)

That's it for today. I have some interviews in the works. Come back tomorrow for a new bunch of links

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Copy of ST PETE
SLIDESHOW!

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This ultra dominant juggernaut Dutch wheelchair tennis player has been nominated (again) for the prestigious Laureus Award. She is on what I truly consider one of the longest undefeated streaks in all of professional sports and is a previous Laureus recipient in 2002.

Here is a short list of Esther Vergeer's tennis statistics, if any of them are wrong or if you care to add to this list just send me a message.

504 and 25 in singles

350 and 26 in doubles.

Amazingly she is unbeaten over the last 4+ years (Jan '03)

7 time Whelchair Tennis World Champion

4 time consecutive Paralympic Gold Medalist, singles and doubles, never done by an a/b

At the end of 2006 she won her 9th consecutive Wheelchair Tennis Masters title

139 singles titles. compared to 107 for Steffi Graf and 167 for Martina Navratilova

20 major titles in singles, more than Evert, Moody, Navratilova, or Billie Jean King

31 major doubles titles.

Since '03 Esther had 150 sets out of 500 at 6-0, thats more than 30 percent of all her matches.

Since '03 Esther had 42 matches at 6-0, and opposing players have only gotten 5 three set matches.

6 consecutive British Opens

259 consecutive singles match wins (Jan '03)

32 consecutive doubles match wins

66 consecutive titles

Lets keep in my that she is only 26 years old......

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Sperry Top Sider NOOD Regatta

Posted by Ralph | 7:21 AM


Courtesy of US Sailing

"St. Petersburg, FL - While most of the country is preparing for a winter storm this week, over 1,500 sailors are headed to Florida for the Sperry Top-Sider National Offshore One Design (NOOD) Regatta, in St. Petersburg, FL, sanctioned by US SAILING. Scheduled for February 16-18 at host St. Petersburg Yacht Club, the regatta’s organizers are preparing for 200 teams spread across 19 one design classes. Daily racing will take place on Tampa Bay under the guidance of Principal Race Officer (PRO) Peter “Luigi” Reggio, who also is known as the PRO for the America’s Cup. The 2006 defending overall champion, John Storck (Huntington, NY), will return to J/80 class competition with his Rumor. The largest class is the Melges 24 with 40 boats set to compete. The J/109 class will be an interesting fleet to keep track of with five of the seven boats coming straight from Key West Race Week. Five of the six entries in the Tripp 26 class are returning from 2006, including class champion McMillan/Melville (Pensacola, FL) on Joe Cool.

It's 7:30 in the morning and I'm getting ready to head over to the Sailing Center to get my spot situated. This is the first major sailing event that I have attended as a quad and I'm really looking to it. Stay tuned for a whole boatload of pix!

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Wheelchair Tennis at Wimbledon in '07

Posted by Ralph | 7:16 AM


Courtesy of the ITF

"This year, for the first time, a wheelchair tennis tournament is to take place at Roland Garros. Following 3 years of exhibitions, the event will host wheelchair tennis in the Masters Series format with the top 8 Women and 8 Men. After having tournaments at the Australian Open, Wimbledon and the US Open, Roland Garros is the last of the Grand Slams to include a wheelchair tennis tournament alongside the able bodied event.

Roland Garros Masters Series will take place from 6th until 8th June and will be followed by the Invacare World Team Cup in Sweden the week after.

For more information on Roland Garros Grand Slam click: here."

It's sad to say that Europe, and for that matter, the rest of world, is so much more inclusive of wheelchair sports. That said, it's awesome that w/c tennis will roll out on the hollowed grass of the all England Club.

In other Wheelchair Tennis News:

"Robin Ammerlaan (NED), Esther Vergeer (NED) and Harry Boniface Prabhu (IND) won Sunday's Main Draw Singles finals at the NRMA Insurance Sydney International Open, part of the NEC Wheelchair Tennis Tour.

Top seed Ammerlaan was only a semi-finalist in last week's Australian Wheelchair Tennis Open in Melbourne, losing his World No 1 ranking in the process to Shingo Kunieda (JPN), and the Japanese second seed looked to be getting the better of Ammerlaan in their first meeting of the year when he comfortably took the first set of Sunday's final in Sydney.

However, Ammerlaan regrouped and came back to dominate the latter stages of the match to seal a 26 63 61 victory.

In the Women's Singles final Vergeer came up against fifth seed Korie Homan (NED), the last player to take a set of tennis off Vergeer. However, there was never any danger of Vergeer dropping a set on Sunday as she successfully defended her Sydney Open title with a 62 62 win.

The closest Main Draw final of the day came in the Quad Singles as Prabhu took on Adrian Dieleman (CAN). The two players had finished in the top two positions in their five-way round robin competition earlier in the week, with Prabhu having finished the pool stage undefeated after a straight sets win over Dieleman. However, Sunday's final was a much closer contest, the Indian player eventually prevailing 62 67(8) 76(5)."

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2007 Wheelchair Basketball All-Star Game

Posted by Ralph | 11:10 AM

Photo - Getty Images

NEW YORK – Twenty-two of the top wheelchair basketball players from across the country will participate in the 2007 NBA/National Wheelchair Basketball Association (NWBA) All-Star Wheelchair Classic on Thursday, Feb. 15 at 5 p.m. PST at the Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino South Convention Center during NBA All-Star Jam Session presented by Adidas.

“The NWBA would like to thank the NBA for the opportunity to showcase our game at its highest level," said Todd Hatfield, NWBA Executive Director. “Fans will be surprised and amazed by the skill and athleticism displayed by these athletes.” In addition, the NWBA All-Stars will host their annual basketball clinic on Wednesday Feb. 14 at 5 p.m. PT, for over 20 junior wheelchair athletes at Doolittle Community Center in Las Vegas as part of the NBA Cares All-Star Caravan. The 2007 NBA/NWBA All-Star Wheelchair Classic will feature the top wheelchair athletes selected from wheelchair teams that are members of the NWBA. The players, selected by the NWBA, are divided into East and West All-Stars. For more information on the NWBA go to http://www.nwba.org/.

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Back again

Posted by Ralph | 7:42 AM |

After a glorious week off I'm back to work. Didn't do anything, just relaxed.I didn't even have internet! I took my mom to the Casino, and lost, but that's about it. While I was away I got a cool e-mail from another quadriplegic photographer in Mexico. He mentioned to me that he reads my blog, and that he had just bought a new Nikon D80.

Nikon's aren't really my bag. The technology is great, the simple fact is that I am stronger in my right arm/hand and the Nikon's mode dial is on the cameras left side. I prefer Canon, the design, and being able to use the complete line of EOS lenses made my decision easy. Nikon makes a good product, it's just not good for me.

Sadly he told me what I have known, and said for a couple years, "I’ve struggled to find adaptive camera equipment." Isn't that the truth! It has taken me two years of research, and lots of trial and error to use my camera rig well, and I still need help with the set-up. I guess that even the best photographers need assistants, and every body needs help with something. Check out his site @
Rollingfstop.


That's it for now, but I will get a chair sports update going now and put it online later this afternoon.

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United Spinal Association information

Posted by Ralph | 6:53 PM

In the never ending quest to work smarter not harder.......... I sent an e-mail to the United Spinal Association and asked them if they would use any of the content or interviews off this site of mine.

I got a response today and I quote. "What a great blog! I am definitely interested in using some of your material. We have a Recreation-themed issue coming up in August where any of these would be interesting to include. I will spend some time when I have a chance looking them over and I'll let you know which ones I'm interested in. In the meantime, please feel free to contact me directly and I will be happy to consider any query you want to send my way. I'd also like to add you to our blogroll."

Good news eh? I can think of all kinds of cliches, paddling up you know what creek, etc. etc. I just don't care to struggle, or feel like I'm struggling professionally, any more.

Did you know that every 41 minutes another person sustains a spinal cord injury? You can join United Spinal Association for free by clicking this
link.

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The first major paralympic sailing qualifier of this year...... and I missed it. Oh well. Jen French placed 11th overall. Here is the full results.

She gave me an interview last year, you can check it out here.

The next Regatta will be in her home waters of St. Petersburg, Florida, Feb.15th-18th. It's only an hour and a half from my house so hopefully I can be there!

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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=il3GsvOLpuw

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Photo by Doug Pensinger (Getty Images)

From US Paralympics:

// U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association // January 27, 2007

"Paralympian Tyler Walker (left) held on to this lead to win the first Mono Skier X competition at the Winter X Games Saturday.ASPEN, Colo. - U.S. Disabled Alpine Ski Team athlete Tyler Walker (Franconia, N.H.) piloted his 40-pound mono-ski to Winter X Games gold Saturday as mono skier X made its official debut.
"Right out of the gate, I just tried to stay focused on everything in front of me," said Walker, a student at the University of New Hampshire. "But the big thing is how important this event is for the sport. The crowd was huge and going crazy, the media is everywhere - it's awesome. This brings our sport into the mainstream and lets everyone know that we're all outstanding athletes, we just use different equipment." (
more)

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Wheechair Sports Updates 1/31/2007

Posted by Ralph | 10:51 AM

Wheelchair Tennis - Australian Open - Shingo Kunieda won over the defending champ Michael Jeremiasz in three sets and regained the #1 spot in the world rankings. On the women's side, Esther Vergeer continues her amazing unbeaten streak, bowling over world #2 Florence Gravellier in straight sets.

Wheelchair Tennis - Sydney Open - First round matches at the first ITF Series 1 event of the year saw some predictable results, and a first round exit of a top seed on the womens side. For the full story go here

Quad Rugby - 15th Annual Coloplast Quad Rugby Tournament - Justin Stark is one cool quad. Not only is he the Director of FSCIRC, he plays quad rugby on the Tampa Generals and is the coordinator of this tournament. Too damn bad they didn't do better, full results here

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'07 W/C Australian Open Final

Posted by Ralph | 7:09 PM

Taken from the ITF Wheelchair Tennis website:

"Defending champion Michael Jeremiasz (FRA) beat World No 1 Robin Ammerlaan (NED) for the first time in their last four meetings on Friday as he secured his place against Shingo Kunieda (JPN) in Saturday's Men's Singles final at the Australian Wheelchair Tennis Open at Melbourne Park."
For the full article - (read more)

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Carol Hollfelder's Interview!

Posted by Ralph | 11:04 PM

As many of you know I have been waiting for this interview for months! The wait was well worth it. For everyone else... Carol is as far as I know, the only professional para female race car driver in the world, competiting against a/b's, and is a great example of the human spirit.


In this interview you'll see some amazing pix and learn about just what makes her tick, who she is and what she wants out of her career and life. I really hope you like reading it as much as I liked waiting for it. ^_^



Ralph: Hi Carol - Thanks for taking the time for this interview. Racing cars is a huge undertaking and I think what you and your team do is amazing.

Carol: Thank you and thank you for asking me. I do need to apologize (again) for the delay in getting back to you. You've been very patient.

Ralph: There are alot of sports available for people like us in chairs. What is it about racing that you love, and how did you get started? Do you participate recreationally in any other chair sports or activities?

Carol: The only sports I've ever really been remotely interested in involved horses and horsepower. I was a competitive equestrian before my accident. I rode hunters and jumpers. That was what I was going to do with my life, but it wasn't the same after I got hurt so, with my father's encouragement, my focus shifted to racing cars. The two things I love most about motorsport are power and control. Learning to direct these machines and make them go where you want them to is an incredible rush. I've always loved cars; the way they look, the way they sound… They're functional works of art and racing them is putting them to good use.

Ralph: Your car is a technological wonder. The hand control system is obviously one of a kind. How long did it take to develop and who all assisted you?

Carol: My father is an engineer. He has a background in both electrical and mechanical engineering and spent a number of years looking for hand controls for a manual transmission that he thought would allow me to be competitive. He didn't want me to be handicapped by the equipment and thought that racing in an automatic wouldn't be as much fun. In 1998, when Ferrari introduced their F1 paddle shifter system on their 355, my dad asked me if I wanted to race one. Like I might say no! Anyway, the semi-automatic transmission in the 355F1 incorporates paddles behind the wheel that you use to shift the gears. Up on the right side and down on the left. We moved the paddles from behind the wheel to thumb switches in front of the steering wheel. Just by clicking the switch with my thumb the car will actuate the clutch, choose the gear and blip the throttle to match the revs on a downshift. With all of that taken care of, all my dad had to figure out was brake and throttle.


The actual mechanics of it are a bit more complicated than they sound, but using the system is incredibly simple. There is a ring mounted behind the steering wheel that you pull forward with your fingertips for throttle and for braking, you push the steering wheel away from you. The steering column telescopes down towards the floor, where the original brake pedal was mounted. So all of the controls are directly on the steering wheel. I never have to take a hand off the wheel while I'm driving. It's a very intuitive system that is pretty easily learned. My husband says it's like playing a video game, only better.


Carol Hollfelder hand control saystem.

Ralph: There is one other para racer I know of named Ray Paprota. Are you familiar with him? He has a NASCAR Touring Series license. What racing circuit do you compete on and how difficult was it to prove you could do it?

Carol: I know of Ray, but we haven't met face to face. I also know quite a few other people with disabilities that race in a number of different series. Everything from rally cars to dragsters. It's becoming fairly common for there to be another driver who uses a wheelchair at most of the club races I go to. I started out in Ferrari Challenge, which was a lot more competitive than we expected and not the easiest place to start. I did a season of club racing after that and then made another huge leap up to SCCA Pro Racing's World Challenge Series. That's an amazing series that doesn't get nearly enough coverage. Some of the best road racers in the world, driving some of the coolest cars you'll ever see. Ferraris, Porsches, Mustangs, Vipers and BMWs going flat out, wheel-to-wheel for 50 minutes around some of the best circuits in the country. Very exciting. I hope to return to that series eventually, but the current level of competition and car preparation has outpaced what our small team could keep up with in the past couple of years. So we've been running in NASA's Super Unlimited class. We plan on competing for the Regional Championship here in California and then heading to Mid-Ohio in September for the National Champsionship race.

There are some great guys running in this series as well. Overall, though, one of the things I've loved about racing is the community. Motorsport is a small world and there are some really good people involved. I've made a lot of good friends. I'm happy to say it's been like this from the beginning for me. I've never had any trouble with people discouraging me or putting up road blocks to my getting a racing license in any of the series I've wanted to race in. I've even qualified for and received an FIA license which would allow me to race at the highest level of GT racing, from the 24 Hrs of Daytona to Le Mans.

Ralph: I read that you like F1, it's one of my favorite passions as well. Who's your favorite driver, and have you ever driven on a track used by F1? What do you think about Juan Pablo joining NASCAR with Toyota?

Carol: I'm tifosa. I've loved Ferraris since I first learned what a car was. I watch Formula 1 to see Ferrari win and whoever can make that happen is who I'm cheering for. I have no idea what to expect for next season, but I'm very sorry that I never had the chance to see Michael Schumacher race in person. I also don't think I've ever had the opportunity to race on a track that is currently used by Formula 1. I've raced at some of the greatest tracks in North America though. Laguna Seca, Road America, Sears Pt., Road Atlanta… I even took a couple of driving schools at Riverside before it closed. As for Montoya and NASCAR… I can't say much. I have absolutely no interest in stock car racing. The technology and style of cars do nothing for me and the racing in circles is only exciting for the first and last 5 minutes of the races. I'm not knocking the guys who do it or saying it's easy, I just don't enjoy watching.


Carol Hollfelder on track pass.

I do want to add that I recently lost a friend, one of the great drivers from Formula 1, Clay Regazzoni. He was killed in a street car accident in December. He was a wonderful, charming man and a great racer. I was honoured to have known him and it's a tragic loss to the world of motorsport.

Ralph: What have been the highest and lowest points in your racing career? Have you ever been in an accident. and what safety measures are in place if you are?

Carol: I don't know that I've had any real low points. I had a couple of seasons in World Challenge where it seemed that every other time we took the car out we were beset by gremlins, but even so, I enjoyed being at the track and around the racing. As for high points, well, being able to say that I've raced a Ferrari is pretty cool. Most people will never have the opportunity to drive one, let alone race one. And competing in World Challenge has been a blast overall. The level of competition is outstanding and I've learned a lot racing against some of the best road racers in the world. I look forward to getting back to it eventually.

As for accidents, everybody has them. I've had a couple of fairly hard crashes and my car caught fire once. (Well, twice, but only once seriously.) Safety is our highest priority. If you know that my father and my husband are the two guys that have done most of the work on my race car, then you know that nobody else is going to worry more about my health and nobody is going to do more to ensure that if things go wrong, I've got the best safety equipment available. The cage in my car is stronger than most, I always wear a head and neck restraint and 3-layer Nomex suit and there are two fire systems in the car. Risk is a part of racing. You do everything you can to minimize that risk and then you accept it if you want to be involved in this sport.

Ralph: Have you faced any criticism from your fellow racers or the racing bodies. Do you have any message for people in chairs or for that matter people who think 'dis' abled people shouldn't do what you do.



Carol: All of the sanctioning bodies that we have approached have been wonderful. Their only concern is that my hand controls and race car are safely designed and constructed and that I have the same level of training as any other racer. I have faced no obstacles to my racing based on other people's perceptions of my disability. Even at the professional level the guys I've raced against have been incredibly welcoming and supportive. I even met my husband at my first pro race. He and his team were some of the nicest guys I'd ever met and we became friends, started working together on my car and eventually fell in love.

My message to people with disabilities is the same as it is for those without, figure out what you want to do in life and then just do it. There are ways for people with all manner of disabilities to be involved in motorsport whether it be driving, wrenching or managing. I'm not the most optimistic person in the world, but if there is something I want to do, I just assume that I'll be able to and work from there. Obstacles may arise, but I don't go looking for them.

There will always be naysayers and they can be a pain, but most people are happy to give you a hand if they can. I've found that to be true in general and even more so in motorsport. It's not a huge industry, but there are a lot of really great people involved.

Ralph: What do you have planned for '07? If Sebring is on your schedule let me know please, it's only 45 minutes from my house, I'll come and take some photos for you.

Carol: I wish I could say that we'll be back at Sebring this season, but right now it doesn't look like that will be happening. We do plan on running a full season in NASA's Super Unlimited class here in the Southern California region and then returning to Mid-Ohio for the National race. I won 2nd in class last year and I hope to have another podium finish next September. We've also started working with an organization called United Spinal. They are a disability awareness and advocacy group. Our involvement is focused on motorsport and motor safety.

We're working to encourage more people with disabilities to get involved in racing and also educating young people about being safe on the street and in competition, whether it's in cars, on motorcycles, boats or snow mobiles. Oh! And we just finished work on a public service announcement regarding handicapped parking. They used our '05 Mustang show car in a PSA that will start appearing on mainstream channels, including MTV. It's pretty funny, but it gets the message across.

Ralph: If you could choose between having stem cell therapy or being modified with robotics which would you pick? I wrote an article about it and I ask all the SCI'S I know. Personally I would choose the robotics.

Carol: As they both currently stand? I wouldn't risk either option. In the future I would probably choose a course of stem cell therapy just because I think there is less chance of something going seriously wrong with an organic cure than with implanted electronics. I wouldn't be racing today if it weren't for all the hi tech gizmos in my car, but there are just too many things that can go wrong with them and I'd hate to have something like that turn against me within my own body.

Ralph: Thanks again for your time and for everything you do. Stereotypes stink and I think you shatter them for everyone that has been exposed to you.


For more info on paraplegic car racer Carol and her career racing, or their specialty line of Mustang bodywork check out their awesome site @ Tigerracing.

Surety Bonds

Providers of prosthetics must have an CMS surety bond. These insure that everyone gets the best product possible. To stay safe and healthy and enjoy life!

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