Darryl Tait pumps up WCMX in Dallas

Whitehorse's Darryl Tait is helping the sport of wheelchair motocross evolve as an athlete and grow as a role model.

Whitehorse’s Darryl Tait is helping the sport of wheelchair motocross evolve as an athlete and grow as a role model.

The 24-year-old took part in RISE Adaptive Sports’ third annual Wheelchair Motocross event over the weekend in Dallas, Texas.

About 40 young wheelchair athletes got a taste of the sport as Tait and a handful of other experienced WCMXers put on a demo, a clinic and a competition at the RISE (Recover, Inspire, Succeed and Empower) event.

“The highlight for me was getting all the kids into it and hanging out with friends I never get to hang out with,” said Tait. “We all learn from each other and keep progressing the sport.

“We’ve met at a few other events, like Life Rolls On, but this weekend we were all staying in the same hotel and got to hang out and got to know each other in a personal level.”

WCMX is basically skateboard and BMX style tricks performed in a wheelchair on ramps, bowls and rails in a skatepark.

Joining Tait at the event was 22-year-old pioneer Aaron Fotheringham, who was the first person ever to perform both a backflip and a double backflip in a wheelchair.

“It’s new, but it’s growing very rapidly,” said Tait of WCMX. “Soon there should be more and more events happening throughout the world.”

The RISE event, which also included demos of adaptive waterskiing and wheelchair rugby, wrapped up with a small competition. Tait did not make the podium, but he was taking it a little easy after the day he had on Saturday.

“I had a bit of complications,” explained Tait. “The day before in the demo I under-rotated a back flip and bent up my chair, so my chair wasn’t riding straight.

“And I stubbed my foot really hard, enough to break one of the bones in my foot. So I wanted to take it fairly easy, not hit it hard, and just enjoy it for what it is.”

Tait competed at two WCMX events in 2012. He placed second at Canada’s first-ever WCMX event, the 9Lives No Limits Adaptive Skate Comp in Burnaby, B.C., and then snagged seventh at the Shoe City Open hosted by Life Rolls On at Venice Beach in Los Angeles.

Tait became a paraplegic in a snowmobile accident during a qualification event for the X Games in October 2009. He went on to fulfill his X Games dream, competing in adaptive snocross at the Games last year in Aspen, Colo.

Contact Tom Patrick at

tomp@yukon-news.com

Just Posted

Whether the dust jacket of this historical novel is the Canadian version (left) or the American (right), the readable content within is the same. (Michael Gates)
History Hunter: New novel a gripping account of the gold rush

Stampede: Gold Fever and Disaster in the Klondike is an ‘enjoyable and readable’ account of history

Yukonomist Keith Halliday
Yukonomist: Your furnace and your truck need to go

Perhaps the biggest commitment in the NDP deal with the Liberals was boosting the Yukon’s climate target

Awaken Festival organizers Meredith Pritchard, Colin Wolf, Martin Nishikawa inside the Old Firehall in Whitehorse on May 11. (Haley Ritchie/Yukon News)
Performing arts fest plans to awaken artistic talent in Whitehorse and the rural North

‘A value of ours is to make theatre as accessible as possible.’

April Mikkelsen tosses a disc during a ladies only disc golf tournament at Solstice DiscGolfPark on May 8. John Tonin/Yukon News
Yukon sees its first-ever women’s disc golf tournament

The Professional Disc Golf Assocation had a global women’s event last weekend. In the Yukon, a women’s only tournament was held for the first time ever.

Dave Blottner, executive director at the Whitehorse Food Bank, said the food bank upped its services because of the pandemic. (John Tonin/Yukon News)
Food Bank sees Yukoners’ generosity firsthand

“Businesses didn’t know if they could stay open but they were calling us to make sure we were able to stay open.”

A prescribed burn is seen from the lookout at Range Road and Whistle Bend Way in Whitehorse May 12. (Stephanie Waddell/Yukon News)
Editorial: Are you ready for a forest fire?

Citizens for a Firesmart Whitehorse have listed some steps for Yukoners to boost safety and awareness

Caribou pass through the Dempster Highway area in their annual migration. A recent decision by the privacy commissioner has recommended the release of some caribou collar re-location data. (Justin Kennedy/Yukon News)
Privacy commissioner recommends release of caribou location data

Department of Environment says consultation with its partners needed before it will consider release

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Brendan Hanley. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)
Family pleased youth will be able to get Pfizer vaccine

Angela Drainville, mother of two, is anxious for a rollout plan to come forward

Safe at home office in Whitehorse on May 10, 2021. (John Tonin/Yukon News)
Federal government provides $1.6 million for Yukon anti-homelessness work

Projects including five mobile homes for small communities received funding.

Drilling at Northern Tiger’s 3Ace gold project in 2011. Randi Newton argues that mining in the territory can be reshaped. (Yukon government/file)
Editorial: There’s momentum for mining reform

CPAWS’ Randi Newton argues that the territory’s mining legislations need a substantial overhaul

At its May 10 meeting, Whitehorse city council approved the subdivision for the Kwanlin Dün First Nation’s business park planned in Marwell. (Submitted)
KDFN business park subdivision approved

Will mean more commercial industrial land available in Whitehorse

Main Street in Whitehorse on May 4. Whitehorse city council has passed the first two readings of a bylaw to allow pop-up patios in city parking spaces. Third reading will come forward later in May. (Stephanie Waddell/Yukon News)
Whitehorse council pursuing restaurant patio possibilities

Council passes first two readings for new patio bylaw

Most Read