SoloRider Cart helps disabled golfers get back onto fairways

By KELLY ESSER Staff Writer newsatniagara.com, Nov. 24, 2006

Frank Peter demonstrates the SoloRider
golf cart at the Grand Niagara Resort
in Niagara Falls on Sept. 8.
Photo by Kelly Esser

The seat elevates, then swivels 360 degrees, making the cart safer for the greens than the average human.

The SoloRider golf cart has opened many doors for the disabled and mobility-impaired golfer.

"It's important to give everyone an opportunity to play," says Frank Peter, 39, of Niagara Falls.

"It'll do wonders for other golfers now," he says, "anyone can use it."

Peter is a supporter and endorser of the SoloRider cart. He goes out to golf courses and events to make the public aware of the singleperson golf cart.

On Sept. 8, the SoloRider cart was demonstrated at the Grand Niagara Resort in Niagara Falls.

"It will prevent people from leaving the game [of golf]. Seniors who couldn’t play because of mobility impairments can now play again," says Peter.

The SoloRider has fewer pounds per square inch than the average human. This allows it to go onto the greens and cause less damage than a human walking on it. It has seven inches of clearance on the bottom, giving it the versatility to venture into the bunkers. The seat elevates to a 45-degree position, allowing the golfer to be almost standing while taking a shot, and with the 360-degree swiveling seat, both left- and right-handed golfers can use the cart.

"It's a great idea, if it lets anyone, handicapped or not, enjoy the game of golf," says Ken Dowswell, 23, manager of Golf Etc., in Niagara Falls.

Pete's cart cost about US$8,600 new with the stand-up seat option and delivered from the Denver, Colo., assembly plant.

Peter broke his back in a car accident on Dec. 31, 1985. He is paralyzed from the chest down, but this injury hasn't stopped him from doing what he wants.

Peter was ranked number 1 in Canada for Wheelchair Tennis in 2004. He is taking a year away from tennis because of a damaged rotator cuff. He has no plans to return to competition.

Roger Pretekin founded the SoloRider company in 1994. It wasn’t until 2004 that the company introduced the SoloRider 3400 series, which is the newest generation of carts. In 2004, Monroe Berkman purchased the company. It is in Centennial, Colo.

For more information about the SoloRider cart, go to www.solorider.com.