Best known for his successful racing career in the CART series in the 1990s, Alex Zanardi was involved in a serious racing accident in September 2001 in Germany, resulting in the amputation of both his legs. For many professional drivers, this would be time to hang up their suits and helmets. But not for Zanardi. He started a rigorous rehabilitation program, and ended up creating his own custom prosthetic legs after being unhappy with what was available. Just a few years later, he was back competing in racing full-time.
Zanardi returned to racing full-time in 2004, driving for BMW in what would become the World Touring Car Championship, and has since driven to many racing victories in the years since.
Reflecting on his life since the accident, Zanardi takes a very pragmatic view of life, and refuses to let it get in the way of getting the most out of his life. “What happened to me happens to a lot of people. It’s amazing how many people have to overcome adversity in their life. I don’t want to describe myself as a kind of Superman. I feel I’m a very lucky person because I’ve been in the position throughout my entire life to have golden dreams.”
Although his latest endeavor is appropriately enough in racing, it doesn’t involve motorsports. Zanardi will be competing in the 2012 London Paralympic Games in August and September as part of Italy’s national Paralympic cycling team. In the video, Zanardi shows his competitive side, saying, “I will be a real threat for my opponents. I’m a very curious person. Curiosity leads you into finding passional aspects in everything you do.”