13-Year-Old Daredevil Becomes One of the First Women To Perform Backflip in Wheelchair
Wheelchair motocross (WCMX) athlete Lily Rice, 13, of Pembrokeshire, Wales became the first European female to perform a backflip in a wheelchair.
This 13-year-old may be in a wheelchair but don’t think for a second there’s anything she can’t do.
Wheelchair motocross (WCMX) athlete Lily Rice, 13, of Pembrokeshire, Wales, became the first European female to perform a backflip in a wheelchair.
“1 weekend, 6 hours and I nailed a backflip on the resi at Rampworld Cardiff! Super stoked!” the teenage daredevil wrote on Facebook. “Now I need a neck brace and back padding before I try it out on concrete!”
Lily was born with hereditary spastic paraplegia, a degenerative condition that causes weakness or stiffness in the leg muscles. As a result, she wears leg splints but spends most of her time in a wheelchair.
Ever since she was given her first WCMX chair earlier this year, she’s been practicing tricks that would normally be performed by BMX riders or skateboarders on adapted ramps.
"I was a bit scared [at first] but I was more excited,” she said in an interview with the BBC. “I was fine with going down banks but I got a bit scared doing the quarters. But after I'd done it once, I was fine.”
When she saw the top athletes in the sport perform backflips, Lily decided she wanted to try them too.
"I'd seen lots of people do it and it didn't look too hard, so I wanted to try it out," she said. "So we found a foam pit and I just practiced it and practiced it and eventually got it in the foam pit.”
She is now believed to be the first female to perform the stunt in Europe and the second worldwide.
Lily is now trying to raise money for a new WCMX wheelchair and so that she can travel to California for the WCMX World Championships in March 2018.
The athlete is also a talented swimmer and has qualified for the Welsh Paralympic youth squad.
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