Sam Schmidt is a former Indy Racing League driver. On January 6, 2000, he crashed during a practice lap at the Walt Disney World Speedway, severely injuring his spinal cord. More than 13 years later, engineers and medical researchers joined forces to modify a car to be safely driven at speed by head movements for a quadriplegic race driver.
On May 18, 2014, Schmidt got behind the wheel of the semi-autonomous motorcar (SAM) and drove for the first time in 14 years at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. He completed a lap, reaching a top speed of 97 mph.
In the video below, Schmidt talks to EDN about what it means to be able to drive again via a specially modified Corvette that responds to his head movements using infrared sensors.
This story originally appeared on EBN's sister site EDN.