Published on Wednesday, 30 November -0001 00:00
Mike Schultz took home another gold medal from the X Games, this time in adaptive motocross from the summer games in Los Angeles.
This past winter, Mike took gold in adaptive snocross in the X Games.
It was just a year and a half ago that Mike's escalating career racing snowmobiles and dirtbikes could have been cut short with a horrible accident during a snowmobile race. As a result of the accident, Mike lost the lower part of his left leg. For a young man active in very physical sports, this could have been devastating. But not for Mike. Within weeks after surgery to amputate his mangled leg, above the knee, Mike was up walking with a prosthetic leg. Within months he was riding again.
Mike soon found that prosthetics on the market just couldn't stand up to the physical needs of racing. In recent years, high-tech prosthetics have been developed for running and other track-and-field sports. But they don't work stand up to the physical rigors of racing.
"I saw a need so I developed around that," said Mike.
Mike designed and built his own prosthetic knee and foot system, the one he now uses to race.
"After I got the first prototype done, I realized it would work for much more than just riding. It works really well for snowboarding, skiing, wakeboarding, and even horseback riding."
Now Mike has his own company, Biodapt Inc. The company will manufacture performance-based prosthetic and adaptive equipment. Mike's goal is to develop this business to provide the best performance adaptive equipment to those who need it.
"I know a lot of amputees would get into more action sports if there was the right equipment available," said Mike.
"As things progress, I would love to get involved with some of the returning [Iraq and Afghanistan] vets and help them get back on their feet, so to speak."
For now, though, Mike's primary focus is on racing, both motocross and snocross. At 28, though, the clock is ticking for Mike's racing career. He's at a pinacle right now, with a silver X Games medal and two gold medals. His plan is to continue racing for another two years or so.
Mike will compete in adaptive races, for amputees and paralyzed racers, for the X Games. He'll race in "regular" classes, too, although not at the pro level.
"I know what it takes to be at that level," said Mike, "and I know I couldn't quite get there."
Both Mike and his wife Sara (Becker) are KAHS graduates. They were home for Kimball Days and were in the parade with his bike and snowmobile. They currently live and work near Brainerd.
Triple R Grill and Bar plans to dedicate a wall to Monster Mike. Mike will be there at 7 p.m. Friday, Aug. 27, for photos and autographs. At 9 they'll show video of his gold medal-winning motocross performance. (Spoiler alert: there's an amazing part in the middle of the race where he literally flies over the head of one racer to take and keep the lead.)
You can also follow Mike in his various ventures at his website at www.monstermikeschultz.com.