153 riders arrived at this year’s Vuelta a Espana with the goal in Madrid. For three weeks they defied the physical effort. Many of them kissed during this time, at least once the Asphalt – the South African Willem Smit. After being on the 7. Stage crashed, he was on the 14. Leg in a bad fall involved. He sustained a deep flesh wound below the knee. With 16 stitches, the wound had to be stitched. The tour seemed to be for the South Africans to be over.

The next Morning, Smit was already at the starting line again. His professional colleagues were amazed, as they beheld him with cover agiertem knee. Smits ordeal was not over with the fall yet. On the contrary, He has only just begun. But why he wanted to do to these hardships continue? A question, which is also the Swiss Steve Morabito for the 26-Year-old before the beginning of the 15. Stage introduced. Smits answer lies in his Childhood.

dysfunctional family relationships

Smit grew up in South Africa in Lydenburg, the “city of suffering”. During his Childhood his mother, who was an alcoholic was, again and again, of men miss. “I was seven years old when I witnessed for the first Time, like my mother, a man was beaten up,” writes Smit on Twitter. An experience that shaped him.

much more impressed with him, but the strength of character of his mother. “Although she was beaten, she never cried or screamed. Silently, she left everything to himself and not ran away like a coward,” said Smit.

Although his parents were separated, used Smit is also a very close relationship to his father. This was much in war zones such as Iraq, Afghanistan and Syria on the road. There, he defused land mines and helped to build new roads. During a mission in Afghanistan his father, however, died – a hard blow of fate for the then Teenager. With his father, he lost also his Idol. “I said night to my wife in our wedding, that I can never be as it was my father.”

“You must not be a coward”

From all of the suffering that drove Smit in his early years, he took power, however. His parents had taught him an important lesson: “you have shown me that you can be in life, not a coward.”

This lesson Smit took after his overthrow, to the heart, and he wanted to finish his first Grand Tour necessarily. Six stages, he had to take with the injured knee. Although he came up with every turn of the pedal to the finish in Madrid in a little closer, however, got worse this also constantly of his pain.

Smit gritted his teeth and dragged himself up in the capital of Spain. A performance that triggered in the driver’s field a lot of recognition. For Smit to yourself the termination of the Vuelta is a big milestone in his own personal suffering history. (jk)