David Lee

David Lee

paralyzed from the waist down  .  hand cyclist

David Lee didn’t start out as a cyclist. 

After a 1990 motorcycle accident left him paralyzed from the waist down, Lee’s first foray into Paralympic sport was in wheelchair racing.  He completed more than 40 marathons, winning eight of them, and eventually decided to take on the challenge of triathlon.  He completed four Ironman distance races, but was eventually forced to move on from the sport due to medical issues.

After a long rehabilitation, Lee felt he needed a new challenge and to get back to his active lifestyle, so in 2006, he entered a grueling handcycle race in Alaska. In Challenge Alaska, he placed a respectable second. He then entered another handcycle race in Redlands, Calif., where he crushed his competition. The rest was history, as Lee is now a well-known figure on the international handcycling stage and he made his Paralympic Games debut in 2008 in Beijing.

In 2006 and 2007, Lee rode from San Francisco, Calif., to La Jolla, Calif., in six days with the Qualcomm Million Dollar Challenge to help raise money for the Challenged Athletes Foundation.

For the last 12 years, while not training, Lee has worked as a self-employed personal trainer.

His latest achievement has been the Silver State 508, a 508 mile bike race in Reno, Nevada.