This past Sunday, people across the world were united by running simultaneously for those who aren't able to do so! Thousands of runners gathered in 2836 teams across the globe in 35 locations on six continents and hit the track at 1PM Croatian time for the Wings For Life World Run in order to raise awareness for spinal cord injuries and collect money for spinal cord injury research that could change peoples’ lives in the future. Since the race was held once again in Croatia’s Zadar, KHL Medvescak Zagreb ‘spread its wings’ again this year and happily supported the Wings For Life Run thanks to their loyal fans who ran for Team Medvescak.
''The whole story and positive aspect of the race really touched me, and the feeling is even stronger now after the race. It was lovely to see people in wheelchairs taking part, I think they particularly motivated other runners and myself. During the race I felt like a part of a wider group, like a member of a big family, and I’m glad that despite the operation I managed to be a part of it'', said Team Medvescak runner Marko Primozic in one breath, adding:
''When I signed up, I said I would run 15km, but in the end I surprised myself by running 20km. It was toughest around the 10km mark, but after it I got a second wind and strength. I’m sure that the adrenaline of being part of such a big and positive crowd running for the same goal, and being a part of Team Medvescak helped keep me going.''
This was 18km runner Valentina Valjak's second time in the race, but her first time as a part of Team Medvescak.
''Medvescak is a true symbol of Zagreb and I'm happily proud to have been a part of their team and to have represented Zagreb that way in Zadar. It was a pleasure to run amongst such a huge crowd of positive people.''
Medvescak's runner Denis Pavlovic ran 17km for those who aren't able to do so.
''It was an incredible experience. I'm amazed by how many people can run 20km. There were at least 1000 people ahead of me who ran that far, and then so many that ran all the way to the end.''
Of course, Medvescak's loyal fan volunteer Morana Dulic didn't miss out on the race and proudly wore the Team Medvescak sign in Ljubljana.
''Knowing that you're running for those who aren't able to do so (like I did for my friend Mark) pushes you to last longer than you had ever anticipated you could. The great atmosphere is standard at races, but the concept of this one is so special that we truly all came out winners. Zig Zag!''
Team Medvescak came in a high 23rd place by number of runners in the Wings For Life World Run, and amongst those who wore the blue Medvescak t-shirt were world rowing champions and Croatian silver Olympic medalists Martin and Valent Sinkovic.
''We're thrilled by the atmosphere. I didn't take part last year so this was an incredible experience. I was particularly moved by people in wheelchairs who took part in the race. It's nice to be part of such a huge positive story, and a part of one of the biggest teams in the race, Team Medvescak'', said Martin Sinkovic.
Valent Sinkovic has already taken part in the race, but that didn't make him any less thrilled.
''I'm pleasantly surprised by how much the race has grown since last year, there are a lot more runners this time. I'm impressed by everyone's enthusiasm regardless of the fact that this isn't about winning, about the best time, or furthest distance. I'm touched by the will of our team's Mark Primozic, whom we read about before the race'', said Valent Sinkovic.
Medvescak's team didn't only have runners from Croatia, but also from abroad. Seven runners in Munich ran for Team Medvescak, and covered a total of 62km, while two people ran in Olten, Switzerland.
''It was a dark and rainy morning in Munich, but everywhere around us you could see smiling faces and anticipation for the race to begin because we knew we were doing a good thing and each of us was ready to give it their all. There were 4000 participants at the start line in Munich, and amongst them were seven runners on Team Medvescak who showed their love for the club, the blue colour, and everything that the club has done and continues to do for good. Being a part of that is priceless, especially representing your club, your city, and your country in a foreign place. We gave it our best as a team, and the smiles after the race speak thousands of words. We're all happy because we made an effort and covered 62 km as a team for those who aren't able to do so'', said Pavo Sukan.
In Croatia, the Wings For Life World Run began in Zadar, and an unbelievable 4000 runners took part in it.