You shouldn’t give up on traditions, especially if they’re excellent. Like the one seen at the start of the Tor des Géants®: the Maratonabili and LND Famiglie italiane, with their smiles and their dreams. Two non-profit organisations that, despite having different missions and objectives, are united by the slogan “Let’s run the dreams” and are committed to give joy and hope to those less fortunate. Families and kids who for their own reasons share with the athletes of the Tor the same ingredients of the challenge: a difficult path, tenacity to keep going, new horizons to conquer…
Being at the starting line of the Tor along with phenomenal athletes is already a victory, especially for children in wheelchairs sick with Lesch-Nyhan, a rare and "bastard" genetic syndrome that affects children so that they cannot walk or speak.
It is also a victory for Maratonabili, kids in wheelchairs or “pushers” who for many years now have used their presence at major competitions to demonstrate that disability is not a world apart, but a part of the world. On the subject of pushers, past finishers of the Tor such as Federico Mazzucchi, Maurizio Monti and Franco Zomer, will be present this year as volunteers and will start pushing some wheelchairs along the first part of the path to the exit from Courmayeur. Runners in a wheelchair: Raphael (Raffa Rock), Michele (the Magnificent) Mark (The Doctor 46), Catherine (The Princess) Fabio (The Whitey).
Finally, it’s also a victory for the families of children with LND, arriving in the Valley D’Aosta from Liguria, Lombardy, Piedmont to represent not only the Italian families affected by the illness, scattered and isolated across the country, but to unite in solidarity and affection with the LND European Federation.
An unconditional round of applause to the people of the Tor.
credit: Enrico Romanzi