On February 8, 2002 DK Factory racer and Olympic hopeful Kai Sakakibara was critically injured at the UCI BMX World Cup event in Bathurst, Australia. Kai was leading an Elite Men’s moto in extremely windy conditions. The front end of his bike was swept out from under him and he fell headfirst into the turn. Kai was flown to Canberra (150 miles away) where he arrived in critical, but stable condition, and was placed in the Intensive Care Unit. Doctors were not confident he would survive. Kai fought hard and now doctors are more optimistic about his recovery.
Months later Kai’s condition continues to improve. He’s off the respirator and has been moved out of ICU. Kai certainly faces a long recovery and it comes at a great and growing expense. The BMX community is tight knit and riders from around the world have come together to raise funds for Kai through auctions, challenges, donations, and more. The outpouring of love and support for Kai and his family has been overwhelming.
Kai and his sister Saya both began racing on DK Bicycles in 2017 and quickly earned spots on our US based Factory Team. Kai and Saya have visited DK headquarters each year. Their visits to Ohio were plenty of fun, but it was perfectly clear that they weren’t on vacation. Their dedication to training is next level. Kai also played an integral role in developing our DK Zenith Disc frame. Check out @sakakibarakai on Instagram for a look at Kai’s smile, hard work, and dedication.
Join the Fight. Purchase these limited edition #KaiFight77 goods direct from DK and all proceeds will be donated to Kai’s recovery. Check back for news, updates, and additional fundraising products too.
Special thanks to:
- The Sakakibara Family
- Cam Small, Illustrator of the Sakakibara toon t-shirt
- Christophe Boul, Illustrator of the #KaiFight77 poster — Boulplanet.com
- Craig Dutton, action photographer of Kai’s race images — CraigDutton.com