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Ocampo receives instructions from RISE Adaptive Sports program manager, Beth Foster. Photo by: Christopher DiVirgilio

WCMX World Championships: Kimberly Ocampo

Online Exclusive posted Wednesday, April 27, 2016 - 1:19pm

In her first WCMX competition, Kim Ocampo conquers fear and competes nine months after injury.

One week ago, Kimberly Ocampo would not have believed she’d be competing in the qualifying rounds at the RISE Adaptive Sports 2016 WCMX World Championships.

Traveling to Dallas, the Florida resident hadn’t originally planned on competing in the wheelchair motocross event. She simply wanted to meet some new people in the wheelchair community, learn some tricks and support some friends who were competing.


Ocampo working on tricks during the RISE Adaptive Sports 2016 WCMX World Championships. Photo by: Christopher DiVirgilio

“I figured if someone was nice enough and had some time to show me something, I would gladly learn,” she says. “Then I met the people there. They were so friendly and willing to teach me everything, they actually suggested that I was good enough to compete. So I did.”

Ocampo, 22, admits she had some trouble at first learning how to do several tricks in her wheelchair.

“Once I learned to look at the tricks as choreography, like when I danced, it changed everything,” she says. “I’m excited to get better, do more tricks and compete again next year.”

Less than a year ago, Ocampo was an aspiring model and dancer. She was on her way to work riding her bicycle when she was hit by a car, resulting in a spinal-cord injury that left her unable to walk. While the hardest obstacle was accepting her injury, she didn’t let it devastate her. Instead she started a habit of conquering one fear a day, as she learned to do the basics like tying her shoes and getting dressed by herself again.

While on the road to recovery, she found social media to be a big part of her life in a wheelchair. A Facebook friend request from an international woman in the wheelchair community introduced her to wheelchair motocross and her second chance outlook on life and positive posts have inspired people, both able-bodied and in a wheelchair, to reach out for advice and to show support.

Ocampo has a busy couple of months ahead. She will be an event ambassador for the Wings for Life World Run in Sunrise, Fla., on May 8. She is also planning a Florida WCMX practice group and hopes to make her dreams of traveling the world a reality. 

Ocampo sat with our field reporter during the event. 

Meeting Kimberly Ocampo from SPORTS N SPOKES on Vimeo.

 

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WCMX World Championships: Kimberly Ocampo

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