Tricounty News

Monster Mike is back in X-Games, snowmobiling

Go west young man … to Aspen, Colo. … and you will find gold! Kimball’s own “Monster” Mike Schultz, an above-knee amputee, inventor of the Moto Knee, and Professional Adaptive Athlete, is back on his snowmobile. Owner of multiple ESPN X-Games Gold Medals, Schultz will compete in the Snowmobile Adaptive SnoCross Competition this weekend at the 2013 Winter X-Games in Aspen.

ESPN’s live telecast of the finals will be 2 p.m. – 6 p.m. EST, Sunday, Jan. 27.  “Monster” Mike will vie for the gold, as he strives for the three in a row. “I’m pretty excited about going for the 3-peat. It’s kind of a big stepping stone in the world of X-Games,” said an enthusiastic Schultz. An 8-man competition, the Adaptive SnoCross event is designed with a schematic that places the competitors in two practice sessions earlier in the week. The individual with the fastest time in the practices gets first choice at the finals line pick. A resolute and determined Schultz has been looking forward to this occasion for some time. “I’m real excited to be back racing snowmobiles this year. Last year I was on the snowboards, and I can’t believe how uncomfortable that really is, compared to my snowmobile.”

Mike became the first in history to win Winter X gold and X-Games gold in different sports in the same year: he captured MTX Super X Adaptive and SMB SnoCross Adaptive in 2010. Prior to losing his left leg because of injuries received in a SnoCross racing accident on Dec. 13, 2008, he had competed in 5 WX SnoCross events (best place of 9th in ‘07).  A long-time tinkerer, Mike built his own special knee (the Moto Knee) and prosthetic leg to accommodate his sled and dirt-bike riding. The Moto Knee has been very efficient and no major adjustments have been made to it in a couple of years. “I have to thank the guys at Fox Racing Shox for getting my equipment working so well for my knee and foot, they keep all my nuts and bolts together!” said Schultz.

This weekend’s X-Games competition is the only snowmobile event scheduled for Mike this year. His calendar includes an entrance in Motocross competition, this spring at the Extremity Games in Millington, Mich. The Extremity Games is an adaptive sports competition, similar to the X-Games, for athletes with amputations and limb differences. The Extremity Games was started by College Park Industries, a manufacturer of prosthetic feet, in the summer of 2006 in Orlando, Fla. Competitors perform in many different sports, categories and styles, trying to win bronze, silver and gold medals, as well as prizes and money.

Mike Schultz was dealt a real physical challenge a few years ago. Through hard work and determination, he has overcome that test and now stands tall in the world of sporting competition. Perhaps he’ll stand tallest on the winner’s podium this weekend in Aspen.