Watch: Legends of the Road Prep for the RAAM
Ocenside, Calif. – The Road 2 Recovery Legends of the Road—David Bailey, Doug Henry, Micky Dymond, and Jeff Ward—are in the final days of preparing for the competition of a lifetime: the 2017 Race Across America (RAAM), which will take them more than 3,000 miles from Oceanside, California, to Annapolis, Maryland, over the course of six to eight days starting June 17.
The team will cycle across the country in a race against time, traversing major climate changes as they pass three major mountain ranges (Sierra, Rocky, and Appalachian), cross four of America’s longest rivers (Colorado, Mississippi, Missouri, and Ohio) and pass through the Mojave Desert, Sonoran Deserts, Monument Valley, and the Great Plains, in a test of mental and physical stamina like no other.
Bailey (55), Henry (48), Dymond (52), and Ward (55) are not your typical competitors. Among them, they’ve earned multiple AMA Supercross/Motocross champion titles, world champion titles and Motorcycle Hall of Fame inductions. But their accolades as athletes are not what sets this team apart; it’s the fact that half the team will be competing in the RAAM on hand cycles.
Bailey and Henry both suffered spinal cord injuries while doing what they loved. Bailey was injured in January of 1987 while practicing for the upcoming supercross season, at a track in Lake Huron, California. There was significant spinal cord damage, and he became paralyzed from the chest down. Almost 20 years later in March of 2007, Henry broke his back while racing in a supermoto race. He now suffers partial paralysis from the waist down. While this might break the spirits of some, these two strong competitors and athletes have used their injuries to inspire others. In 1997, Bailey started training for the Hawaii Ironman triathlon. In his first two attempts, he finished in third place, then second; finally in 2000 he became Ironman World Champion in his division, 13 years after his accident. Seven years after Henry’s injury he competed and won third place at Winter X-Games 14, in the “Adaptive Snowmobile” class.
After watching Dymond and his team of four race RAAM back in 2014, Bailey became inspired to do the same. He wanted to put together a team of athletes, and his goal was much greater than winning: “My hope is both to inspire and raise additional money for athletes who need a boost to get going again,” Bailey said. “Road 2 Recovery helped me back in 2007 when I was in bad shape physically and financially. It's the least I can do to demonstrate how much it helps when you have that extra boost and motivation to be at your best”.
The team chooses to carry on the tradition of the name “The Legends of the Road” in tribute to Micky’s first RAAM team—comprised of Dymond, Dave Mirra, Ben Bostrom, and Dave Zabriskie—that raced in 2014, winning the four-person team category. The late Dave Mirra coined the team name and this new group of Legends hopes to do it justice this year and carry on the name for many years to come.
To learn more about the Legends of the Road, RAAM, and to support the team, please click here. You can also stay up to date on the team’s progress—from training to racing—by following their social pages @davidbaileymx @jeffward3x, @mickydymond and @doug19henry, by following @road2recovery or by visiting Road2Recovery.com.