René De Silvestro, Davide Bendotti, Melania Corradini, Andrea Valenti, Alessandro Varotto. They are some of the FISIP athletes (Italian Federation of Paralympic Winter Sports) who are training in view of the Pyeongchang Winter Paralympics, scheduled on March 9th - 18th, 2018. DiaSorin wanted to meet them and learn about their stories as athletes and as unique individuals.
Each one of them, has a profound love for skiing.
For René it started at the age of 6. Before the accident, which took place right on the slopes, he competed with able-bodied skiers. The desire for redemption has brought him back on the snow and he’s now ready for the most important meeting of all: the one in South Korea. Because sport has taught him to "be positive in everything".
Davide as well, has been skiing since he was a child, but he has only started to compete professionally after the accident. To him, today, this sport is everything, as it has allowed him to "redeem himself, visit beautiful places, meet many people and above all grow as a person".
Melania shares the same determination: born with a disability, she skies with a single racket since she was a child. At the age of 16, she discovered the competitions for the disabled people and she hasn’t stopped since then. Thanks to her family and the sponsors who have supported her, she now lives for skiing: "It is my priority. I have always been determined to follow my dreams".
Sport, says Andrea, is "a reason for living, a safety valve when I feel down".
Alessandro, another professional competitor of 4 years, adds: "it is a motivation to move forward: it gives you the charge to reach new goals, even in everyday life".
We leave our athletes with a question: what would they bring to Pyeongchang? Everyone agrees: family, luck, determination, desire to win.
And some of them, like René, would also add Italian food. Who can blame him?