2012 Staff Picks : Donn Maeda

Favorite Video

Ricky James: Perseverance
June 21, 2012
Oceanside, California

“The video that stands out to me the most this year is one I made with my friend, Ricky James. Paralyzed several years ago at the peak of his amateur racing career, Ricky has gained fame in motocross as that crazy paraplegic who built a special motocross bike with hand controls and cages to protect his legs.”

“Through the years, RJ and I have become good friends and have spent many days at the track motoing together. He’s crazy! Many times, he’d ask me to check out a jump for him and I’d see if it was possible to hit and land, while seated. More often than not, Ricky would still huck jumps even if I told him I thought it was too sketchy for him to do. Ultimately, he ended up breaking his back again when he cartwheeled the huge midfield double at Pala Raceway. Since then, he’s decided to park his dirt bike for good, and concentrate on some other competitive events; namely Ironman endurance events.”

“The video we made together this summer has minimal riding footage in it, as it documents his preparation for an Ironman qualifier event that he was set to do. I spent multiple days with RJ filming: in his race chair, on his hand bike, and even at the gym and swimming pool. If you know Ricky James, you already know what a great person he is, and that’s what made creating the video so memorable for me. Any time I get to spend with Ricky is memorable and I appreciate every opportunity to do so. If you don’t know Ricky, please watch the video and see what I’m talking about.”