The Race and Walk “Lluis Companys”, organized every year as and exercise of historical memory by Fundació l'Alternativa, commemorate this year, the 80th anniversary farewell of the International Brigades in Barcelona.
This year we celebrated under a complex political context in Catalonia, so, faithful to the republican values of freedom, equality and fraternity, we demand freedom for the political prisoners; as well the Catalonian’s right to determinate freely their future.
As soon as the Race and Walk Event ends, the organization of the next one starts off, with a process of assessing those aspects that need to be improved, and also having an intense and strong period of work to accomplish the programmed tasks: Meetings with the Club Nova Fita (Sports event organizer), call the volunteers, meetings with the urban guard, with BSM (Barcelona Municipal Services), adquiring the proper licenses, etc.
When the day comes, the organizers arrive at dawn; then, the welcome, accredit, hand out the reflected vests to the volunteers, and deliver tasks: store clothes, distribute shirts, and the external circuit. There is work for everyone, even the urban police. At 8.00 am the sun is getting up to accompany us. People are arriving and collect their bibs with the runner number and T-shirts. It seems that when we improve one aspect, another complicates all, and unavoidable queues are generated through the first tasks process.
Shortly before 9, you hear someone by the microphone calling to the participants to the starting line. This year there are 90 people and many kids, which reflect that this walk is quite popular and accepted.
Isabel, a volunteer, goes ahead of the group and Ana ends it. When all they reach the entrance of the Montjuic castle, Cista González Sentís, on behalf of the Apical de les Brigades Internationals, gives a brief explanation about the importance of this fort from the XVII Century. Then, the return and entrance to the stadium to the last lap of honor among the applauses of runners and participants.
At 9:30 am starts off the race with 480 runners. On the start-finish line there is a metallic arch with a sticking sign that reminds President Luis Companys, who was murdered by fascism troups.
Surprisingly, as soon as we said goodbye to the last runner on the second lap, someone entered to the finish line and became the winner.
On www.cursacompanys.cat you will find all the information and images of this day. In the bulletin we only inform about the name of those who got first places in the finish line: Carlos Rodríguez Cordoned (26:57), Josep Díaz Carretero (27:24), Jodi Pujol Dominguez (27:48), Mireia Suñé Galán (32:52), Elisabet Martín Almansa (33:18), and Marina García (33:35).
In a race there are those who win by arriving first, but we must recognize the merit and will of all the people who ran under a sun of justice. Some in group, in pairs, or in solitary, with the Republican flag, with the T-shirt of the race or accompanied of who they felt more comfortable.
Everyone reached the stadium. Apples and water were hand out to runners. Every one sweats but full of proud. Fortunately, health services did not have to intervene at any moment. Many photos shut having as background the stadium or the poster with the figure of Lluis Companys.
We thank all the people who spent some of their time to deliver the prizes. Ed Eduard Amoreaux, President of Apical de las Brigades Internacionales; Carme Garcia, Director General of Democratic Memory, Department of Justice; Joan Josep Nuet, Deputy of the Parliament of Catalonia and General Coordinator of United and Alternative Left; Marta Carranza, Sports Commissioner of the City Hall of Barcelona; Elisenda Alamany, spokeswoman of the Parliamentary Group Catalunya en Comú-Podem; Nadia Canvas, Antoni Canvas’ daughter, who participated in the Popular Olympiad in 1936 and continued as collaborator on the next events until he died; Carles Vallejo, Head of the Catalan Association of Political ex-prisoners in Franco regime; Yann Lelann, Member of Transform Europe and Spaniard exile grandson; Adeline Escandell, President of Fundació l’Alternative; and Eva Balart, member of the Board of Trustees of Fundació l’Alternative.
UNTIL THE NEXT YEAR
The stadium will be empty and only remain that unseen job: disassemble, pick up, and load vans. Good atmosphere among everyone and the good feeling of being here next year, one more time.
For then, we’ll be waiting for you. The next event will be the 12th Race and Walk Lluís Companys.
The Race and Walk Lluís Companys has the collaboration of the City Council of Barcelona, the District of Sants-Montjuïc, and the Democratic Memorial of the Generalitat de Catalunya.