Back To The Future
Back To The Future
Of the many feature stories that run through these pages each year, I have to say that the “Riders Who Inspire” story in the October 2019 issue was easily one of the most inspiring I’d read in a long time. The story put the spotlight on Shane Cahill, who, after having both of his arms amputated following an industrial accident, took up mountain biking with the help of some prosthetic arms that were designed by one of my biggest heroes—Mert Lawwill. Mert is a former AMA national champion and star of the greatest motorcycle movie ever made, Bruce Brown’s On Any Sunday.
Beyond his talents as a throttle twister, Mert is also an accomplished engineer and designer, who, in addition to designing one of the earliest versions of a mountain bike in the late ’70s, as well as a variety of race-winning rear-suspension designs for Yeti Cycles, also designed a unique prosthetic arm for a good friend who lost an arm in a motorcycle accident.
All that aside, seeing the photos of Shane reminded me once again of some photos I shot back in the day of other riders I’d met at the NORBA Nationals who were not letting the loss of a limb stop them from getting out and mixing it up in the dirt.
It’s riders like Shane and all the others who have overcome physical limitations to keep pedaling that should keep us aware of how fortunate we are to enjoy such a great sport. Oh, and Mert’s prosthetic is still available: www.mertlawwill.com/prosthetic-hand/
THERE ARE SO MANY WAYS TO GET MOUNTAIN BIKE ACTION
Mountain Bike Action is a monthly magazine devoted to all things mountain biking (yes, that’s 12 times a year because we never take a month off of mountain biking). It has been around since 1986 and we’re still having fun. Start a subscription by clicking here or calling (800) 767-0345.