In 2018 he had given up on the Olympics, he had to undertake the most difficult race against evil. Elena Fanchini didn’t make it: at 37, the former blue skier died at her home in Solato in the province of Brescia, she had to surrender to the tumor she had defeated but which recurred last summer. Born in Lovere on April 30, 1985, older sister of Nadia, top level athlete of the new pink avalanche and of Sabrina, Elena won a silver in the downhill in Bormio at the 2005 World Championships when, at not even 20 years old, she finished second in the shoulders of Janica Kostelic. You have taken part in six World Championships and three Olympic Games.
In the World Cup she won two downhill victories in Lake Louise in 2005 and ten years later in Cortina: a career in which there was no shortage of injuries, from which Elena had always recovered. “I want to go back to skiing” she had said not without emotion when she had announced that she had to suspend competitive activity before the Games in Korea. And she had succeeded, as a thoroughbred downhill racer as she was, but above all driven by a positivity and a smile that she never lacked.
Not even in the darkest moments. Because after his recovery at the end of 2018, the return to skiing didn’t last very long: a fall in training a Copper Mountain with fracture of the fibula had forced her through tears to have to give up again. And it felt like a final goodbye.
“It was nice to go skiing even for just five days, my goal was to defeat the disease and I succeeded” said the blue. After all, courage and tenacity were her trademark, because even from that stop she had recovered: surgery and skis on her feet during the Christmas holidays of 2019. “My most beautiful gift” wrote the champion . Very close to her sister Nadia, she had then announced the definitive stop of her career with the strongest blue: a farewell for two that of the Fanchini sisters, who arrived in April 2020, with Nadia having become Alessandro’s mother a few months earlier, and Elena determined to watch to the future without races, but not far from his beloved snow. Last summer though Intestinal pain is back and a new and terrible battle began for Elena: which the Lombard skier was unable to win. She passed away in her home, leaving just 37 years old the ski world in shock on the very day in which Marta Bassino’s world gold was celebrated in Meribel. His last race remains the cup superg in Val d’Isere in 2017: then the ordeal, between falls and hope. Until the end. On social networks, the smiling photos with the grandchild, the beloved family, the snow, the campaigns for cancer research. Last January Sofia Goggia had dedicated her victory in Cortina to her: “Eli is for you”. A message that the former blue had received with a smile: “That red bib gave me a smile”.
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