In June 2016 whilst training for Prudential RideLondon, the 100-mile charity cycle across London, Steven Dowd fell from his bike and sustained a devastating spinal cord injury at C3/C4. Immediately upon impact he lost all sensation and movement below his neck and was classified as tetraplegic – the total loss of use of all four limbs and torso.
“I was conscious throughout my accident. When I reached the hospital I remember being told my injury was ‘severe’ and it was terrifying to think I’d never move any of my limbs again.”
Steven was enrolled in an experimental trial funded by Wings For Life, a not-for-profit foundation that supports world-class spinal code research and clinical trials around the globe. Upon waking from surgery, Steven embarked on his first 200 Days Challenge; a promise to his wife Helen that he’d be ‘normal’ by Christmas Day and would walk the turkey to the table. Despite a bleak prognosis, and after months of gruelling rehabilitation, Steven fulfilled this promise against all the odds.
Although not back to ‘normal’ Steven can now walk again unaided and has a new epic 200 Days Challenge – “to break the race that broke me”.
On 30th July, the same day as RideLondon takes place, Steven will attempt to static-cycle the 100 miles he originally trained for a year ago, in an ambitious time of less than 6 hours, and a team from BRUIN Financial will be joining him!
Steven is aiming to raise the 10k that Wings For Life funded for his surgery, of which every penny goes directly into spinal cord injury research.
“I’d like to see an end to people needing wheelchairs and with the right research I believe this is possible in my lifetime. Through funding essential research and trials like mine Wings for Life provide hope for the 1200 people in the UK and Ireland who are paralysed every year as a result of a SCI, and even more globally.”
On 30th July a team from BRUIN will join Steven at the Red Bull Headquarters in London to static-cycle 100 miles, and if possible do it under his 6 hours target!
We are hoping to raise £2,000 for Wings for Life and any support towards this goal would be greatly appreciated, please visit our JustGiving page to donate and for more details.