2013 Canadian Champion
Zach Bell is the bomb
Zach represented Canada at the 2008 and 2012 Summer Olympic Games.
Zach is a two time World Championship Silver Medalist on the track.
Zach is a 16 time Canadian Championship medalist on the road and track. He is the current Canadian Champion on the Road.
This one is for the sponsors. Not Just the ordinary sponsors. The ones who have your back as an athlete and understand you are a person. The ones like SpiderTech and Champion System that took a look at me when I was at my worst and said “here is a guy we can still help find his best!” Not because it would be a good story, but because they believe in the power of the sport to help build a human back up if he is given the time.
I have been training again. Training a lot. Training in the cold wet winter of Vancouver.*(read the foot note before you comment) I am training again to get back to competing and that journey to find a new level. But through the course of this I have been trying to really sort out why. Why am I out here in the rain pounding out the hours? Why don’t I just walk away? It certainly would be easier. The sport is mired in a shadow of lies that has covered all of us participating to a point where we are starting to become unrecognizable. Yet I carry on and continue to explain that there are clean riders. There are riders who love to race.
This will be the first piece of writing I have done since the passing of Paxton. There will be two parts to this piece. First I want to address a question I have been getting a lot regarding what our plans are as a family regarding memorials for our son. Many people out there have expressed an interest in being involved in some way in a memorial. My wife and I have spoken about it and we want to make things as accessible as possible. Paxton reminded us both of how wonderfully blessed we are to have the types of people we have in our families. Our support has been amazing and we want to remember Paxton in a way that honors this.
I am writing today with a whole new out look on life. On the things that can be considered hard.
On October 13th, 2012 at around noon my wife gave birth to our first born son, Paxton Michael Bell. He was a beautiful perfect little boy. But when he was born he was not breathing. He was taken away from us as quickly as he had arrived. My family was moved to BC Children’s Hospital and Paxton and Rebecca began receiving the most amazing care I have ever had the privilege to witness.
Over the next 2 days the doctors and specialists cared for Paxton and worked around the clock to try and determine what had happened. In the end they came to us with the most terrifying news I have ever received in my life. During the labor there was some sort of problem that prevented the umbilical chord from delivering the things it needed too him, specifically gases like Oxygen. They think it occurred somewhere in the 2nd half of the labor process and was prolonged enough that Paxton suffered an acute, sever brain event. There was no part of him that was not impacted. Our perfect boy, a perfect pregnancy for my wife, had grown just the way he should have and had everything robbed of him.
The Doctors then told us he was unlikely to survive and that they did not feel there was anything more medicine could do for him. Late Tuesday we had to take the life shattering choice to take Paxton off of vital supports to see if he had enough function to even support his vital operations. After a fight that seemed to last an eternity it was obvious he did not and he passed quietly cradled in his mothers arms. The perfect picture of an infant that never had the chance to show his true colours.
Rebecca and I love him with all our hearts after only a short time. Even though he never had a chance with us here we got to know him and his personality over the last 9 months. He has forever changed things for us. Cycling and its challenges seem small compared to what he fought against. We will miss him.
My main focus has been on qualifying for and competing in track cycling at the Olympic Games – Beijing and London. In this time I was able to to win World Championship and Commonwealth games medals, along with an overall win in the 2011 World Cup season series.
This year I shifted focus strictly to the racing the road. I captured UCI wins at the .2 and .1 level and win the National Road Title in Canada. Outside of racing I write a regular article for ROAD magazine that has been well-received and great coverage for my sponsors.
I developed and lead 2 charitable initiatives. “Paxton’s Lights for Hope” which benefits BC Women’s Hospital NICU and the “Zach Bell Rural Youth Sport Initiative” which will provide a platform to help fund access to sport for young rural athletes in the Yukon, Canada.
Zach is currently living and training in North Vancouver, BC Canada. He’s available for speaking engagements, sponsorship inquiries and charitable events – Contact him,
Phone: (778) 928-8399