Paraplegic Wyoming Motorcycle Rider Inspires at X-Games

David Trujillo says he has loved dirt bikes for as long as he can remember. As a teenager, he would spend every spare hour riding on tracks and in the open spaces around his native Rawlins in Wyoming.

Then one day in 2009, the 19-year-old Trujillo overshot a jump and landed flat on his back a couple of seconds later. He survived, but the impact left him permanently paralyzed from the waist down.

Trujillo’s body may be broken, but his spirit isn’t. More than a decade after the accident, the Wyoming motorcycle rider continues to inspire other motorcyclists and his local community.

A Long Recovery Follows Motorcycle Crash

After a grueling five weeks in a Colorado hospital followed by a complicated surgery, Trujillo was back on a bike just three weeks after he was discharged. Trujillo couldn’t ride by himself at the time. He called a friend and asked him to take him riding.

As much as he enjoyed his first post-accident ride, the young Wyoming biker was determined not to remain a backseat passenger for the rest of his life. So he ended up spending the next decade adapting bikes for his condition and re-learning how to ride.

At first, he would secure himself to the bike using primitive tie-down straps, which were at a constant risk of getting tangled in the chain.

Because Trujillo couldn’t use his leg to operate the shifter, he could only ride in second or third gear — or have a fellow rider approach dangerously close and shift for him while the bike was moving.

As you might expect, the initial attempts at creating a makeshift dirt bike resulted in a few near-wrecks.

But over time and after a lot of trial and error, Trujillo perfected his technique and was able to build a customized bike that actually works — and he started riding and competing again.

Today, the Wyoming motorcycle rider inspires fellow riders and people with disabilities by showing them that if you put in the work, anything is possible.

Trujillo Competes in Para Snow Bikecross Race

In 2019, nearly 10 years after the accident, the organizers of the Winter X-Games invited Trujillo to compete in the para snow bikecross race.

The competition took place at the world’s biggest action sports venue in Aspen, Colorado, and featured riders on motocross bikes modified with skis and tracks for snow racing.

Trujillo had to act quickly. He bought a 2014 Yamaha dirt bike and adapted it for snow and his needs.

Crucially, the modified bike features a battery-operated handlebar shifter that allows Trujillo to shift gears manually and tap into the engine’s full potential.

He also fitted the bike with custom foot pegs, which keep his boots in place while allowing full range of motion, and a protective frame to surround and safeguard his lower body. The frame secures him firmly onto the bike but allows enough leeway for him to throw his weight around.

To adapt the 2014 Yamaha for the snow, Trujillo replaced the front wheel with a white ski. In the back, he installed a track similar to those on snowmobiles.

“It’s a dream come true,” Trujillo said of his bike and participation in the Winter X-Games.

Ride Safe With Law Tigers

When you’re out on two wheels, safety and preparedness should always come first.

If you have an accident, call the team at Law Tigers as soon as possible. You will be referred to an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer in Wyoming who can explain your options and how to protect your rights.

Call Law Tigers, attorneys who ride, at 1 (888) 863-7216 today to speak to a motorcycle attorney near you.