Alejandro Albor takes first in Handcycling Championship despite recent injury
Alejandro Albor,a double-leg amputee and world champion handcyclist, participated inDenver's 8 th Annual Rocky Mountain Cycling Omnium on June 6, and tookfirst place in the Bear Creek Time Trial. This race, which ispart of the U.S. Handcycling Road National Championships and also theParalympic Selection Event, officially secured his spot on the 2008U.S. Paralympic Team.
The 14 kilometer Bear Creek Time Trial was particularly challenging for Albor because of a dislocated collar bone.Recently, a van struck him while training in California, dislocatinghis collar bone and destroying his new handcycle. Although Albor isstill recuperating and under medical care, he still competed in therace, using his training bike, which is three pounds heavier than hisracing bike.
Albormade his Paralympic debut in Athens, Greece in 2004, when handcyclingwas first introduced as an official Paralympic sport. Albor tooksilver, despite a last-minute rule that didn't allow him to use his ownracing bike. In that race he had to use the same training bike he usedat the Bear Creek Time Trial.
Denver-based Disaboom, the largest onlinecommunity for people touched by disability, has sponsored Alborthroughout his quest to the 2008 Paralympics in Beijing, China. For Albor, disaboom.com is a long-awaited resource.
"UntilDisaboom was established, I had yet to find a place where I could gofor information, talk with others in similar situations, share ideas,and gain a sense of community," said Albor. "I am thankful forDisaboom's vision and their belief in me as an athlete and a person."
Inaddition to racing for gold, Albor wears many hats. He is a husband andfather, a public speaker, and a builder of custom handcycles for peopleof all abilities. Though his free time is nearly nonexistent, he stilltakes time to build at least one handcycle per year for donation.
Alborstarted building handcycles for people when he noticed how expensivethey can be ($6,000+) and realized that he could build them for less.When asked why he would take the time to do such time-consuming anddemanding work, he replied, "I like helping people and giving them thechance to experience handcycling."
"Weare honored to sponsor Alejandro on his amazing journey and areecstatic he has secured his spot on the 2008 U.S. Paralympic Team,"said Dr. Glen House, f ounder of Disaboom. "He is an amazing person and an incredible source of inspiration for so many people."
Inaddition to sponsoring Albor's quest for gold, Disaboom is helpingfinance a documentary film of his life by filmmaker Steven Barber ofVanilla Fire Productions (http://www.vanillafire.com/vanilla.html).