Murat, who continued to ski in spite of everything: «I turned fear into joy»

He is part of the Swiss Paralympic Ski Team and is an ambassador for The North Face team. Murat Pelit was present (even if not protagonist) at the Paralympics at the start. But you’ve already won his biggest challenge

An overwhelming energy. Of those that strike you here, in full chest and that leave you stunned in the middle between “I wish and then I can” and “… but how the hell does it?”. Answers without answering Murat Pelit, athlete of the Swiss Paralympic Ski Team and ambassador of The North Face team, protagonist of one of the Storytelling Night organized by the brand in its stores around the world. He does so simply by telling himself and laughing at a contagious laugh, at times.

Returning from his first Paralympics in Korea, this Ticinese boy brought home a much more significant victory than a medal.

The pain in his left hand during his races prevented him from running the blades as he dreamed, but not from fulfilling a dream: that of being there, after 15 years, starting from a hospital bed.

It was 2003, in his life a career started in the Swiss Army’s rescue troops in the mountains of the house and an innate love for the outdoor. One day, carrying a friend’s backpack, he feels his back hurt.

“A malignant tumor in the sacrum, this was the verdict,” he says. The reaction in these situations is clear: either pass, or do an all in. “I had a lot of time in that hospital room. If you come from a small village in Switzerland like Stabio in Canton Ticino, you are used to living with the mountains, you see them around you. I looked at them from the window and understood that time could become my friend instead of an enemy, that I now had all the possible hours to plan my return on the snow, in the woods ».

From 2003 to 2006 he enters and exits the hospitals and slowly, walking becomes increasingly difficult. Until the paralysis of the lower limbs. “That period was a long process of maturation for me. I grew up humanely and learned to slip a lot of things on me. I came out of that situation better than I had entered: I had been afraid and fear is nothing but a condensation of energy. Like joy. So I chose this one, I made it mine and I understood it would be my lifeblood. I am healed “.

Before Murat’s illness there was snowboarding. Today he has mastered all disciplines, from the special slalom, to the super-G, to the downhill. And it is on these two last ones that point everything and for everything. “When you are in front of the starting gate of a free descent, you feel the thrill that very few other things give you. I touch the 120 / 125km per hour and even on my monoski I feel all the speed. It makes me feel incredibly alive. ”

The monoshock chair with which it trains and competes has a tailored carbon shell and skis with sharp edges. The hardest thing is learning to drift, he says. “For the technique is a matter of head, in all senses, when you have a lesion that paralyzes your lower body, your center of gravity rises and shoulders, head and neck become your best allies to draw the trajectory”.

On the helmet the drawings of the four grandchildren cheering for him and who followed him in the five-circle adventure. “The Olympics are pure sport, without barriers and without diversity. We must get there with the right degree of madness. I gave what I could at that moment, but I know I can do a lot more. ”

And now? “Now that summer is approaching, I’ll go downhill with a three-wheeled bicycle looking for the strongest emotions in the mountains of Europe.”