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A few months ago we flew to Spain for the Valencia Marathon and on this occasion, we had the pleasure to host on board one of our charter planes Christian Giagnoni a handbike champion and a winner of numerous national and international competitions.

Christian is a champion in all aspects, not only from a sportive point of view, but also as a person – he is full of determination, strength and fellowship. And I can assure you that this is not only because of his fascinating Tuscany accent!

So, dear readers, with great pleasure we would like to share with you his words.

Good morning Christian, first of all I would like to thank you for your availability. For me this interview is very special. After meeting you on board one of our flights to Valencia and getting to know you better during the time we spent together, I would like our readers to have a sense on your strength, your determination and your great capability to transmit positivity.
Therefore, before talking about many of your achievements, I would like you to tell us something about yourself and how your great passion for sport was born.

Hello and first of all thank you!
For me sport is more than just a passion, it is something that has always made me feel good and think positively and I will never stop being thankful for it, because it taught me to never surrender. Then, of course it requires character and determination, but those who are sportive will understand what I am talking about…

Your outset in sport began with hockey. Why it was hockey and not football or cycling?

I will explain right away why it was roller hockey.
Where I used to live, this sport was a legend. On the floor above lived one of the world’s greatest players and one day he took me with him and from there on my adventure began.
I started to play at the age of 4 in my town team and I successively became Capitan of the Hockey Prato 54.

Now you are a champion of handbike, the winner of many awards: three times Pink Shirt at the Giro d’Italia Handbike, Italian and European Championships, National Paralympic… How do you prepare yourself?

My preparation is very intense. In winter I train at the gym and in the swimming pool and then as soon as the weather permits, I go cycling…
Usually, in February we move to places where the temperatures are more suitable in order to train outside.

How do you manage your transfers for the competitions? I mean it is certainly not easy to transport a handbike by road nor by plane, regardless of whether it is a commercial flight or a charter flight. How does it work?

The transfers in Italy are not a big problem: I have a van and I move autonomously.
Therefore, I take everything I need and go wherever I want to.
The problem is the airplane, because the bike is rather large, you’ve seen it, and the costs for its transportation is high. Then I must always hope that it arrives intact…
And especially, once landed, I have to hope that a taxi driver – some good Cristian guy – will take all my things in; that mostly whenever they see a wheelchair, they run away…

Besides your official commitments, I know that you also have a passion for the marathon. You have recently participated at the Valencia Marathon, flying with us from Milan. What can you say about this experience? About both competition and the flight but be sure to tell me only about the positive experience!

Yes, Valencia was a great satisfaction! Besides the top-level flight and accommodation! And without, as I have said before, having to think of the charter plane and moving around problems (the things that always makes me worry…).
It was the top-level flight! And it was easier with the luggage (ed. Handbike transportation)! I even forgot I had it with me, therefore it was perfect.
The marathon was wonderful: I would do it again 10.000 times! But not with a handbike, because its organization does not allow you to run it the way you would like to. But in a way it is only fair, because the handbike speed is so different from that of the runners, and having along the rout the athletes of the “short” (ed. 10 km instead of 42km, which is an alternative solution for those who would like to participate at the event without having to run the entire Marathon), it was normal that something strange could have happened (ed. the handbikes and the runners of the 10km shared parts of the rout and the security had to stop for a certain time the handbikers).
But the location, the pleasure to run 42 km among other athletes and to live four days of sport… it is healthy and always priceless. Wonderful!

For the location and the transfer, we have to thank our Partner Agencies, who were, as always great in selecting the service providers.
You have many supporters and since not so long ago you were nominated the “Prato citizen of the year”. How do you feel in this role? I mean, it is an exceptional qualification, but it is also of a great responsibility…

The Prato citizen of the year!
Yes, it is a role that makes me feel comfortable and I am proud to be one. Prato has always been by my side and as the Captain of the team I am proud to take it high with me around the world.
As for the responsibility, when there is something you really like, you don’t even think about it…

Christian, you are really one of a kind! What are your projects for the near future?

On 15th/16th starts the European race at Lanzarote and from there, there will be many competitions: starting from the Giro d’Italia until the World Cup in August.

What a busy agenda! Is there any suggestion you would like to give us to be able to face everything with that kind of enthusiasm you have and with a smile?

I will give you one short and intense suggestion: KEEP YOUR HEAD UP AND LOVE LIFE!


That Aviation Italia: the air charter broker with love for sport.

For any further information and flight price quotation, please contact us.

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