A south London man is hoping to take part in the first ever all-disabled team to compete in the Le Mans 24 Hour after recovering from a motorcycle crash that left him paralysed.

Tyrone Mathurin, 42, plans to join Team BRIT's efforts to enter a fully disabled team into the iconic motorsport event, and lend a hand in BRIT's support for people with physical and psychological challenges by accessing motorsport through its racing academy.

The Battersea man said he had turned his life around after previously serving time in prison.

In February 2005, he was riding his motorbike when he crashed over an obscured pothole. The accident caused four nerves to be torn from his spinal cord. During surgery to reattach the nerves, doctors were unaware of a hematoma putting pressure onto his spinal cord.

A week later, Tyrone awoke from an induced coma, totally paralysed from head to toe. He spent the next seven months in a hospital bed painstakingly gaining small movements back in his joints before being transferred to the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital in Stanmore for additional months of physio.

Today, he has weakness in his right leg and no movement in his right hip and has no feeling from his right hand to his right elbow.

"After my accident, everything changed. I knew I wanted to change my life and keep out of trouble. It wasn’t just me I was affecting by being involved in drugs, it was everyone around me.

"At the same time, I was coping with being told I’d never walk again, I could barely breathe for myself. I spent months being unable to communicate with anyone apart from looking at letters of the alphabet to spell out words. I blamed myself for everything that had happened and felt like a burden on people, so my mental health was very low," he said.

Tyrone would go on to compare leaving his frequently agonizing time spent in hospital to that he spent in prison, with a similar feeling of rebirth at the end:

"When I came out of hospital it was almost like coming out of prison. Both times I was in places where I was looked after and had everything done for me, so I was really anxious about living on my own. Eventually I met film producer Pikki Fearon who was also disabled and he encouraged me to do more. He showed me how to use the gym, get in and out of my car more easily and boosted my spirits. I then set myself goals, and the more I achieved, the more I pushed myself forward," he said.

Eventually, Tyrone, who is a lifelong motorsport fan, got involved with Team BRIT, who specialise in transitioning from kart racing to endurance motorsport like Le Mans.

The Battersea man was eventually invited to join Team BRIT's kart workshop in Dunsfold, Surrey, and is due to take his race test licence later this year.

"Now, I’m excited about what’s ahead, I’m ready to push my limits and see how far I can take this. If I can also inspire people with my story, by showing them that it’s never too late to turn your life around, I’ll feel very proud."

Tyrone said he now hopes to be racing with the team in the Britcar Championship in 2022.