Falci Adaptive Motorsports is one of the world’s premiere organizations dedicated to putting wheelchair-bound race enthusiasts back into a racing experience. Working with both paraplegic and quadriplegic race car drivers, Falci Adaptive Motorsports is setting new records on the track bringing innovative adaptive technology together with the very human side of racing.
Through its partnerships with racing fabricators and technology companies, Falci Adaptive Motorsports inspired and promoted the build of 2 groundbreaking Corvettes; a paraplegic-adapted-Corvette and a quadriplegic-adapted-Corvette.New projects are currently underway.
The ultimate mission of Falci Adaptive Motorsports is to add “motorsports” to the ever-growing list of athletic and recreational pursuits enjoyed by the spinal cord injured and disabled population while advancing the development of adaptive technologies (“enabling” the disabled),using our race cars as developmental platforms.
Falci Adaptive Motorsports partners with the U.S. Air Force Academy, FalconWorks, Air Force Research Laboratory, Furniture Row Warehouse NASCAR racing team, Craig Hospital and Princeton University to maximize the impact of bringing mobility to paraplegic, quadriplegic and disabled individuals.
This is the car that started it all. This 2001 Corvette C5 Stingray is the result of Dr Falci’s desire to put a paralyzed individual behind the wheel of a race car. The Para-Vette was rebuilt from the frame up with a paraplegic driver in mind.
With the fabrication and design team of RaceKraft and Design, the C5 was equipped with hand controls for acceleration, an infrared shifter, and a hand brake.
“If we can make it so a paraplegic individual can drive, why couldn’t we make it so a quadriplegic individual can drive?”
That’s the question Dr. Scott Falci asked as soon as the Para-Vette project became a success. Falci had the idea to put a quadripegic race car driver behind the wheel to drive. Falci heard about Indy driver and team owner, Sam Schmidt, who was left quadriplegic after a racing accident, and asked him to drive the car. Schmidt would only be able to use his head, eyes and his mouth to drive. The Quad-Vette (S.A.M. or semi autonomous motorcar) project was launched.
In order to control the new C7 Corvette’s steering, acceleration and braking systems, highly advanced electronic and control systems would have to be designed and built into the car. Falci partnered with Arrow Electronics, Ball Aerospace and the Air Force Research Laboratory to design and build this innovative car. This is the subject of a new documentary to be released soon.
The new Quad-Vette caught the attention of the Indianapolis 500. And at the 2014 race, Sam Schmidt sat behind the wheel on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in front of tens of thousands of fans racing the Quad-Vette around the track in a special pre-race event.
Sam Schmidt’s journey back to the driver’s seat in the Quad-Vette is the subject of a new film, “Re-engineering Sam.”