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We met Sam for the first time at a small race somewhere in the eastern part of Germany - not exactly the kind of place where you’d expect to meet a young and talented South African Downhill racer who travels the world racing bikes. That was 2 years ago and since then his continued progression and passion for the sport led to us wanting to do a project together.

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In February 2015, during his pre season build up, Sam suffered a big set back when was hit by a car while out on a training ride. It was the type of accident that could easily have been a career- ending one, with Sam suffering several fractures including fractured vertebrae in his lower back. We were shocked when we read about his accident and saw pictures of him strapped to a hospital bed.

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If anything, getting hit by a car while training for your upcoming World Cup season proves that you can't really predict what life is going to throw at you next. What really matters though is how you cope with challenges: it’s all about your perspective.

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"Growing up in rural South Africa, and seeing the contrasts between people who have everything coexisting with people who have nothing, has definitely put things into perspective.“

Only a few weeks after the accident, and many hours of rehab later, Sam was on his bike, trying to get things back on track for the season ahead of him. As in all sports, seasons don’t always go according to plan. The same holds true for Sam's season. Qualifying for a World Cup final is no small feat, although often overlooked. Sometimes it worked out, others it didn’t.

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"It's not easy living out of a suitcase for 5-6 months, and it's a challenge at times, but I feel it's a small price to pay for getting to live out your dream.“

But whenever we caught up with Sam, he was in a good spirit and focussing on future positives, rather than the negatives of the past. Knowing that he's just getting started, we're convinced that there's a bright future ahead of Sam.

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"I am so grateful for the opportunities that I've been given already, and I feel I'm just getting started."

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"Racing can be tough and with the good comes the bad. For me, putting things into perspective is what drives me. At the end of the day, I do this because I love riding bikes, and the fact I have the opportunity to do so, is all the perspective I need.“
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