Fearnley is one of the most colorful—and feared—wheelchair athletes in the world. He has captured 13 individual medals across five Paralympic Games, including a silver in the marathon and bronze in the 5000 meters at the Rio 2016 Games where he served as Australia’s co-captain. He has won five New York City Marathon titles, including four consecutive from 2006 to 2009; his 1:29:22 event record from 2006 still stands. Fearnley has won two Paralympic marathon gold medals, two IPC Athletics World Championship marathon golds, and marathon races in London, Chicago, Los Angeles, Seoul, Rome, Paris, Sydney, and Port Elizabeth. This year, he won the Tokyo Marathon in February, and placed second at the Rio Paralympic Marathon in September as well as the Bank of America Chicago Marathon in October.
At the 2016 TCS New York City Marathon, he was the runner-up in a photo finish, crossing the line just sixth hundredths of a second behind Switzerland's Marcel Hug.
Two days after his New York City victory in 2009, Fearnley proposed to his longtime girlfriend, Sheridan Rosconi on a carriage ride through Central Park; the pair wed in December of 2010. Later that month, Fearnley crawled the grueling Kokoda Trail in Papua New Guinea to raise money for charity; the 96-kilometer trek took him 11 days.
In 2014, Fearnley and his wife welcomed their first son, Harry, and the family was on hand to greet Fearnley at the finish line of his victorious TCS New York City Marathon that November. Born without the lower portion of his spine, Fearnley works as an ambassador for the Day of Difference Foundation, a charity for critically injured children. His autobiography, Pushing the Limits: Life, Marathons and Kokoda, was published in October 2014.