From a sunny hot noon in Nuremberg city Germany to a showering cold rainy morning in Narok County in Kenya, NTC is spreading its Wings across continents bringing together peoples of all works of life to take part in a world race, Wings For Life World Run 2021.
“A tree cannot make a forest”
-- an African adage that my father used to tell me as a young boy, brings a new meaning to what togetherness can archive when we all support one another! Together we can achieve a lot more. Together we are Faster! NTC motto!
WFLWR a race dedicated to raising funds around the world to support research institutions on spinal cord injuries.
As we all know, Covid-19 restrictions around the world didn’t’t allow usual event but still there is always a way if we all want things to happen. The organizers of WFLWR took it to another level making it an App-Run. Which means participants from all over the world can register and take part in the event, while running in their respective location of choice on the 9th of May, starting at 11:00UTC.
NTC have prepared for weeks on this event, led by our dedicated Captain Chris Sturm whom took it upon himself to make sure things goes perfectly smooth as planned. Caps off for this brother and staff. You guys rock like a Rockstar!! Part of the organization of NTC x WFLWR 2021 was a collaboration with ON Running brand and Red Bull Germany that supported the event in various ways, we say thanks!
NTC secured a location for the race for its members and everyone that was participating in the event at same location around Wöhrdersee/Wiese in Nuremberg with starting point at Norikus walk way. It was a beautiful sunny day, feels like the beginning of summer and everyone is tempted to go out and enjoy the sun while feeling a bit of freedom that we all have been deprived off by covid-19! Walkways were beginning to get crowded as passerby were pouring out from every angle towards Wöhrdersee.
We try to organize the runners in a scattered form to minimize crowding before race starts. Red Bull Germany crew an official partner with wings for life was present at the location, ready with music, catcher-bike and Red Bull distributing energy drinks to the participants. So much excitement in the atmosphere, it's been awhile since we had a real race event. The Sport Integrativ Nürnberg team and media crew was also present at the location. So, we had to spread out while waiting for race countdown to begin. This was our first event with the Sport Integrativ Nurnberg team.
In Mr. Potter's words:
"NTC prides itself on inclusivity and absolutely everyone is welcomed no matter what their background, race, ability or ambitions in running are. The club has supported a number of local charities in the Nuremberg area and hope to continue to support more charities in the future and integrate more people into Nuremberg running community. From a competitive point of view the club has already established itself as one of the fastest running crews in Germany after finishing 2nd in the On running 5k SquadRace series in 2019."
Meanwhile in Kenya!
While we were waiting to take off, our team member Mr. Samuel Lemurt in Narok County in Kenya - also an old friend of our Team member Mr. Jeffrey Noris - was already an hour ahead racing with his hand bike from Rotian to Narok stadium?
Samuel and Jeffrey met in 2015 in Germany at Social event. Since then they became friends and stayed in contact over social media. On one of their chats, Jeffrey mentioned WFLWR 2021 to Samuel and encouraged him to take part alongside Jeffrey, even with his less physical ability due to his upcoming hip surgery, he was determined to participate with Samuel. Jeffrey asked me (Fino) to check out the registrations process for him, which I did and thought it will be a lot easier to get Manuel Walter involved since he already registered and has a better insight. Manu happily helped out with registrations and they also won a goody bags from WFLWR…. What a lucky team!
Registration done. Race day checked now it's show time.
I (Fino) happened to be the middle man, getting things done with Jeffrey as we helped Samuel to prepare for his race day. This will be the first time that Wings for Life race will be held in Narok county in Kenya and a great start for Samuel to showcase what great abilities one still has no matter what their physical disabilities are. Samuel is a pioneer of Osiligi Active Disabled Network (C.B.O) a non-profit organization supporting disable people in his community.
Part of the goal was for Samuel to bring hope to his people and to raise awareness of his cause. Samuel's target was to race 15km on his hand bike. As soon as he was flagged off by distinguished team from Narok county government at 11am, it started to rain heavily but that did not stop him from racing, a warrior carrying a torch to shine light of hope through Narok county Kenya!
Thanks to Nuremberg Track Club (NTC) and Jeffrey whom made it possible to bring Wings for Life World Run to Narok county Kenya. Congratulations to Samuel for completing his race even under pouring heavy rain which was symbolically seen as "rain of blessing" signifying part of the project to prove fresh drinkable water to the local communities of Narok.
In Jeffrey`s words:
"The Wings For Life World Run 2021 was a very special happening for me and my Masai-brother, Samuel Lemurt. For me it was a symbolic flight with my new wing for life, my new hip joint. I wanted to be part of this event, which I had participated in 2019. After a painful 5 or 6 km, I had to drop out due to the hip problem I was coping with. But this year, even though I do still have problems with my hip, I was eager to participate and support Sammy. He was carrying the torch of faith through Narok town. Sammy, a true champ and ambassador for the good and positive flew through the streets of Narok. My run lasted about 10 minutes, maybe a bit less, or more – who cares? My new wing was airborne, if only for a few minutes, but we were flying and knowing that Sammy was racing with the lungs of a whale and the "Wind of Change" beneath his wings!
Sammy, my brother, I am proud and honored to be your friend – Thank you!"
In Samuel´s words:
"As a wheel chair runner for this case I was undoubtedly was steadfast to quench my thirst for doing so for others satisfactions. My target was to cover 15 kilometers. Up hills and down hills I cycled undeterred. Rain poured heavily but I soldiered on, on reaching Narok town the sirens aroused spectators’ curiosity. Thanks to everyone who rallied be hide this."
Estimated 70 participants took part in NTC x WFLWR 2021, covering a total distance of 733 km tracked on the app and some distance couldn’t’t be recoded due to app malfunctioning.
A total of 1,434 euros donations was collected by the NTC Team. And NTC is the 2nd largest running participated crew at WFLWR 2021 in Germany.
Something to be proud of. Thanks to everyone who made this possible, we look forward to 2022 Wings For Life race without Covid-19 restrictions. 😊
Around the world, a total of 184,236 participants from 195 nations ran for those who can’t and a total of 4,100,000 Euros were raised on entry fees and donations which will be channeled to spinal cord research.
Registration for 2022 is open, so put on your dancing shoes! Oh sorry, I meant your running shoes. 😊
Written by Fino