Sam McIntosh’s life changed dramatically in 2007 when he fell off a BMX bike while holidaying with his family in Coffs Harbour, breaking his neck to become a quadriplegic.

While recovering in hospital, the thrill-seeker from Geelong was inspired by stuntmen he saw performing back flips in wheelchairs and turned his attention to wheelchair rugby. However, a chance encounter with Kaye Colman, the mother of Paralympic gold medallist Richard Colman, directed Sam down the path of wheelchair racing.

In a 12-month period, and guided by Richard’s coach Mandi Cole, Sam managed to improve his times in the 100m, 200m and 400m by just over one, four-and-a-half and nearly five seconds, respectively, and though unable to snatch gold from Swiss champion Beat Boesch at the 2010 Swiss Nationals, finishing second to him in the 100m, 200m and 400m events, these results only further motivated Sam to strive for Paralympic gold.

Achieving …

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Date of birth
13 July 1990
Past Paralympic Games

London 2012, Rio 2016

Physical Impairment – Quadriplegia
How acquired
BMX riding accident
Drysdale, VIC
Started competing
First competed for Australia
Sport career highlights

Competing at the 2011 IPC Athletics World Championships in Christchurch, New Zealand

Greatest sporting moments

When Carey Hart became the first person to do a backflip on a motorcycle


  • Sport: Para-athletics Discipline: 100m Classification: T52
  • Sport: Para-athletics Discipline: 400m Classification: T52

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