A DORSET teenager who was paralysed in a horror crash stunned doctors when he walked out of hospital.
Sam Barfoot was the victim of a dramatic race accident last October at the Rogers Hill Raceway in Bere Regis.
The 15-year-old, who is from Corfe Mullen, broke his back in seven places and was told that he would never walk again.
The teenager has been racing since he was eight and is a member of Poole & Parkstone Motocross Club.
He underwent a five-hour operation and had two titanium rods, two bolts and 11 screws inserted into his spine.
To the complete shock of his family, friends and doctors, Sam walked out of hospital less than two weeks later.
His mum Dawn told the Echo how she witnessed her son ‘fly’ off his bike into the air after a jump at 40mph before hitting the ground and ‘bouncing more than once’.
She said: “He just ended up in a big hole at the side of the track.
“The bike landed on top of him.
“I just kept thinking ‘please get up’ over and over again but he didn’t so his dad and I started to run towards him.
“There was no movement and he was unconscious when his dad got to him.
“I wouldn’t wish any mother or parent to go through what we did.”
Emergency services flocked to the scene and Sam was taken to Dorset County Hospital.
He had already taken part in a race that day and was leading the way in the second before the crash.
Before the operation, Sam had regained some small movements in his lower legs but surgeons did not expect this to improve after the operation.
He was later taken to Southampton Children’s Hospital, which specialises in spinal injuries, for an MRI scan and the doctors believed he would be in hospital for months.
Sam stunned surgeons when he took his first steps and left hospital just 12 days later.
Sam, who attends school at Corfe Hills in Poole, and his family thanked staff at the hospital, especially Dr Evan Davies, a consultant orthopaedic surgeon.
He is now set to lead a normal, healthy life and is determined to race again one day.
His mum added: “As far as his dad Andy and I are concerned, he’s not racing again.”
With three races to go before the season’s end on that Sunday, he still won the championship as he had been so far ahead on points.