Stew Baylor Breaks Neck, Rides Eight Miles to Finish Race in Top 10

Well, here’s a crazy story from over the weekend.

Sunday was the season opener for the Specialized Grand National Cross Country series in Union, S.C. Series favorite Stew Baylor was battling with Josh Strang for second place before having a big crash on the last lap. The big get off happened around the four-mile mark of the 12-mile course.

Baylor suffered a broken C7 vertebrae in his neck, a broken wrist and a concussion in the crash.

So his day is done and they’re going to have to cart him out of the woods, right? Nah, this fucking savage gets up, can’t feel his extremities and throws a leg back over his Am-Pro Yamaha YZ450FX. Then he proceeds to ride the remaining eight miles of the track to cross the finish line in ninth place in the XC1 Pro class and 11th place overall.

And in typical Stew fashion, he was cracking jokes on Instagram as he’s in the back of the squad on the way to the hospital. When people say ‘built different’, this is who they’re talking about. Member when Lebron James had his teammates carry him off the court because he had leg cramps? Yea, I member.

Unfortunately, Big Buck claimed two other top riders on Sunday. Fan favorite Thad Duvall and reigning XC2 Pro champion Johnny Girroir both went down with broken pelvises (pelvi?).

But that’s the nature of the beast. These guys are gladiators. Man in the arena.

Mikey Waynes said it best; “Those that get it, get it. Those that don’t, never will.”

On a side note, Ben Kelley was awesome. Injuries aside, I don’t think anybody was touching him in round one. There’s a reason he’s the defending champ and it looks like he may repeat in 2022.

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