It is a very special edition but this year – as never before – Fair play’s values are in line with what is happening worldwide.
Just a few days to go and the Fair Play Menarini International Award will raise the curtain for its XXIV^ edition.
This event – that was presented on Tuesday 1st September 2020 during a press conference in Rome – celebrates important values such as ethics and fair play by awarding athletes and the best influential people of the international sport area.
Athletes’ challenges, human interests, victories and defeats represent models of life and the new generations can only take inspiration from such virtuous examples.
This year edition is, in particular, a tribute to whom fought during the lockdown. The athlets awarded in the past editions demonstrated to embody the ability to react at their best and today, as never before, these qualities mean hope for everyone. Rising again from difficulties, setting new targets, working side by side: these are the teachings offered by sport to collectivity.
This is the reason why the Menarini Group has been Title Sponsor of this award for 8 years, as it shares the mission and it is in action at the forefront, promoting the universal principles of playing according to the rules, of tolerance and of solidarity.
Despite the events lived by the sport’s world because of the Covid-19 emergency, the Fair Play Menarini Award remains an appointment not to be missed. Even though many offcial competitions have been cancelled, this situation didn’t affect the positive messages of unity and sharing that the sport activiy brings with it. We should begin from these feelings, so essentials for civil society, to encourage a revival post-Covid era.
“This edition is taking place during a very particular year, probably the most difficult one from the second world war onwards” – stated Ennio Troiano, Human Resources Corporate Director of the Menarini Group – “This year we had to fight and we are still fighting against a terrible pandemic, but we are doing it using the weapons typical of fair play”.
Altruism and commitment are the values used by the healthcare’s professionals that can represent a good example for all citizens, according to Ennio Troiano: “Let’s think about the great capacity we showed in respecting the rules, like wearing a mask or staying at home when it was necessary: these are the typical values of fair play.”
During this hard period Menarini Group realized some crucial projects, like converting the establishment in Florence to the production of sanitizing gel, reaching the amount of 100 tons of gel per month. It was all donated to the civil protection which decided to share it all over the national territory. Ennio Troiano also added: “It wasn’t the only important thing we did. In this period we also managed to guarantee the medicines’ supply that were necessary to our patients all over the world. These initiatives make us proud and happy to be part of this incredible fair play world”.
An important novelty of 2020 Edition is linked to the “Telling emotions” Award that – beginning from this year – it is named after the memory of Franco Lauro: journalist, presenter and historical voice of italian sport, who passed away this 14 of April. The award went to the young journalist Dario Ronzulli that, as his collegue Franco, deals with basketball.
Among the award winnings of this year, stand out some names that made the history of sport like the Cuban ex volleyball player Joel Despaigne, the football legends José Altafini and Zibgniew Boniek, the coaches Arrigo Sacchi, Louis Van Gaal and the “settebello” water polo coach Alessandro Campagna. Next to them, there are the athlets of the present involved in different disciplines, like the motorcyclist Manuel Poggiali, the stars of alpine skiing the Fanchini sisters, the golf player Federica Dassù; young sports talent as the swimmer Benedetta Pilato or the gymnast Gaia Di Trapani, winner of the Fiamme Gialle’s Award “Study and sport”; stories of courage and determination like the one of the yachtsman Andrea Stella.
The “Sustenium Energy and Heart” Award will go to the skier Dominik Paris, while the “Social and civil commitment” special Award – in a historical moment marked by the medical emergency of Covid-19 – will go to FNMOCeO (National Federation of Surgeons and Orthodontist Association) and to FNOPI (National Federation of Paramedical Professions Association). During the press conference was awarded in the category “Fair Play and solidarity”, the famous driver Giancarlo Fisichella.
The International Fair Play Menarini Award was born in 1997 with the purpose of making the new generations reflect on the sport’s values that are highlighted by the group: fair competition, fight against doping, courage and tenacity, with the aim of facing with deep responsibility the future challenges.
Nowadays the Fair Play Menarini Award, organized and promoted in collaboration with CONI (Italian Olympic National Committee), is the most important international recognition on the fair play theme.
Even this year the CONI’s President Giovanni Malagò spoke during the opening of the press conference, in order to greet the XXIV edition of the Fair Play Menarini Award and to praise the spirit of this initiative: “In this context I’d like to congratulate the organization of the Fair Play Menarini Award, as the values of the event are in full communion with what is happening in the world. The sporting and human qualities of the winnings give to the award an exceptional character, making it a desired and appreciated recognition internationally”.
The award is evaluated and assigned by a specific jury. In fact the President Angelo Morelli can count on a group of collaborators, sports professionals on different levels, representing Europe, Africa, Asia and the Americas, to confirm the global nature of the event.